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The Martian Chronicles Mass Market Paperback – April 17, 2012
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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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“A modern classic” —The Washington Post
“A giant…One of the country’s most popular and prolific authors.” —Los Angeles Times
“One of the greats of twentieth century American fantasy.” —Newsday
“There is no simpler, yet deeper, stylist than Bradbury. Out of the plainest of words he creates images and moods that readers seem to carry with them forever.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“A wonderful storyteller….Nearly everything he has written is sheer poetry.” —St. Louis Post-Dispatch
From the Back Cover
Bradbury's Mars is a place of hope, dreams and metaphor - of crystal pillars and fossil seas - where a fine dust settles on the great, empty cities of a silently destroyed civilization. It is here the invaders have come to despoil and commercialize, to grow and to learn - first a trickle, then a torrent, rushing from a world with no future toward a promise of tomorrow. The Earthman conquers Mars...and then is conquered by it, lulled by dangerous lies of comfort and familiarity, and enchanted by the lingering glamour of an ancient, mysterious native race.
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UPDATE: January, 2017
I have let this warning stand for 4 years, but it is no longer accurate. There are (apart from used books) three versions of The Martian Chronicles on this Amazon page: the Kindle, the hardcover and the trade paperback. I have looked at the table of contents of each.
The Kindle version is a censored version with altered dates, Way in the Middle of the Air missing and The Fire Balloons added. Apparently this kindle version is no longer available, I cannot verify that, but I hope it is true.
The hardcover version also is a censored version with altered dates, Way in the Middle of the Air missing and The Fire Balloons added.
The mass-market paperback, however, I am delighted to say is a better edition, with the original dates restored, and the original chapters that the 1958 version, and all subsequent versions up to 1998, had. Thank you, Simon and Shuster, for responding to reader outrage and restoring what never should have been altered. And thanks to the book-buying and reading public for demanding that a book widely touted by its sellers as "a classic" be, in fact, a classic.
By the way, there is nothing wrong with Bradbury's story "The Fire Balloons", it's just not part of The Martian Chronicles, it's part of The Illustrated Man, look for it there.
Yes, but in different ways. Yes, there were technological anachronisms, such as typewriters. What was timeless were the people. There are explorations of what it means to be "them." First humans are the "them" to be feared and dealt with by the Martians. Then there is the "them" of the Martians. Even the humans divide into "us" and "them" at points. And there is the final story where the concept of "us" and "them" sees blurring.
Bradbury also explores the links between science, religion, and art. He looks at censorship and the killing of dreams. There are so many timeless themes in this book.
I believe if you consider yourself culturally literate, you should read this classic book. If you enjoy thoughtful fiction with philosophical implications, then you'll enjoy this book. If you read science fiction and haven't read this book, then you should pick it up next to see the roots of the stories today.
This is a simple collection of seemingly unrelated short stories. As you reach the end of each story you are unwittingly compelled to the next one. Eventually you realize that they all fit together. When you make this realization you also realize that you can't stop. Bradbury has cleverly drawn you in and you are trapped until the finish. You realize that he has done this and you don't care because you like it.
In my humble opinion this book is one of the best from one of the best. I cannot praise it or Bradbury enough. If you are familiar with some of his other works like "The Illustrated Man" or "Something Wicked This Way Comes" then you already know what I am talking about. Pick it up. Give it a try. However, be forewarned. When you find that you have come to the end and there is no more you will be disappointed.