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Farenheit 451 Paperback – April 1, 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Del Rey (April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 8445074873
  • ISBN-13: 978-8445074879
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,520 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

If you're still reading then you know this book begins and ends in flames.
Steve Reina
It says that we've been struggling over the loss of books in our society for much longer than we normally think.
Among other reasons the book was a symbol of one mans superiority over another in a world of equals.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Hilarie on July 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
Farenheit 451 was first published in 1953, so as I started on my first reading of the book I wondered if it would feel dated. After finishing it, I've decided that this book is even more relevant today than when it was first written.

Farenheit 451 is set sometime in the future (Bradbury wisely chose not to set a specific date for his story), and is the story of Guy Montag, a professional book burner, or "fireman." In Montag's time, American society now focuses primarily on constant pleasure seeking without inhibitions of any kind. Intellectual pursuits such as reading or writing are strongly discouraged, and those found owning any banned piece of literature (which by this time includes almost any piece of literature) are punished by imprisonment, while their homes are burned with the offending books inside. It is a time of apathy and lawlessness, and most of the population spends almost their entire lives focused on vacuous entertainment which massages the minds of the masses into an intellectual sleep. Montag's contentment with this existence is disrupted one day when he meets a young girl, Clarrise, who engages him in a conversation that begins to awaken in him the desire for a more meaningful life. Ultimately, Montag rebels and finds himself a fugitive from the very society that has created him.

To be upfront, I will admit that I hate modern television, specifically the drivel of reality tv that consists of watching the antics of dysfunctional individuals in all their horrific glory. I will be the first to admit that I enjoy television shows like Lost and Battlestar Galactica which actually seem to have a story driven plot, and are delightfully complex.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Bojan Tunguz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
Fahrenheit 451 is one of the most famous works of science fiction, and with "Brave New World" and "1984" represents one of the most memorable and haunting dystopias. In a future world, books are banned and firemen actually set fires instead of extinguishing them. The state exercises a form of social control through controlling what sort of information people have access to. It turns out that not all books are banned, only those that we would today consider "great works" - Plato, Shakespeare, The Bible, Darwin, etc. For me one of the biggest surprises about Fahrenheit 451 was the rationale that was offered for the burning of those books. In a nutshell, they offended politically correct sensibilities and the authorities felt that they would undermine the social cohesion. This expunging of the classics from the culture has an uncanny resonance with the attempts over past few decades to expunge them from the undergraduate liberal arts curriculum. And rationale is also similar: these books are not "diverse" enough and may offend the sensibilities of an ever-increasing list of "minorities." It is hard not to wonder if a milder, softer version of dystopian future that Bradbury was worried about in the early 1950s has not in fact arrived.

Bradbury's writing and ideas are somewhere between those of George Orwell and Philip K. Dick. His style is very engaging, and even poetic. His writing is at its best when one of his characters engages in a prolonged monolog. However, the plot development could use some improvement. There is very little in terms of transition from one scene to the next, and most scenes are overly compressed. It is very hard to follow the plot developments at times.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By StrangePegs on October 23, 2013
Format: Paperback
This is not the first time I've read Fahrenheit 451, but it has been, oh, about 30 years, and you can forget a lot in 30 years. I had. In fact, I had forgotten what a wonderful book it is and, actually, how relevant it remains, now, 60 years later. It's also amazing to see all of the foresight Bradbury had into the world that would be, which is now the world that is. [It was not amazing to see how much of Fahrenheit made it into Snow Crash and not in a good way. Not in an homage way. In a "I really like this and am going to take it and use it in my book" way. Like the mechanical dog. I didn't think it was possible for my view of Snow Crash to fall any farther than it already was, but Stephenson surprised me yet again. Not in a good way.]

The thing that stood out to me most is the true nature of the dystopian world of the Firemen. I'm not a fan of dystopians, but that's because I'm not a fan of current dystopians, which are not dystopians at all. Almost across the board, they are post-apocalyptic. The Hunger Games is not a dystopian story; I don't care how it's marketed or what publishers say or whatever. [And the distinction and where it went wrong is a post unto itself, so I'm not going to go into that now.] But Fahrenheit is in no way post-apocalyptic (although you could say it's pre-apocalyptic, I suppose). It's not even a government imposed dystopian. No, the Firemen and the book burning is something that came from the people, and that's what makes the book so scary.

And, possibly, real.

There are so many things in our current society that Bradbury was only glimpsing when he wrote the book, but they are so much worse, now, than then. I'll focus on two things:

1. We don't like to make people feel bad. About anything.
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