- Hardcover: 269 pages
- Publisher: Doubleday; Book Club (BCE/BOMC) edition (2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 096501746X
- ISBN-13: 978-0965017466
- Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 1.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (800 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #921,314 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Ray Bradbury The Martian Chronicles Hardcover – 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
Ray Bradbury wrote these short stories in the late 1940s at a time when we knew almost nothing about Mars. Some scientists even thought there were probably canals and the remnants of a dead or dying Martian civilization on Mars. Written as science fiction originally by Mr. Bradbury, our growing knowledge of Mars makes these assumptions science fantasy today. But don't let that shift rob these stories of their power over you.
But Mars was just the setting for a more serious set of questions. Mr. Bradbury was concerned that the world was too full of hate, war, short-sightedness, and greed to amount to much. He despaired as to whether humans would survive the discovery of the atomic bomb. From this raw material of human excess, he stitched together a powerful vision of our choices -- to operate at our best . . . or our worst. He appeals to our better selves in a vivid way that will be unforgettable to you, if you are like me.
The development of the book has an interesting history. Mr. Bradbury was in his late twenties, and had written quite a few short stories. While visiting New York, he showed his short stories to publishers who liked them. The publishers advised him that there was a market for novels, but not much of one for books of short stories. Then one night it hit him, he had the raw material for a novel about Mars if he simply wrote a few transition stories to fit with ones he had already written. He sat up late that night writing the book proposal, and sold it the next day. That concept became The Martian Chronicles.
Mr.Read more ›
Mr. Bradbury wrote a story where all of the black people get fed up with the south, and the way they are treated, load up the rocket and leave all of the bigots behind. Incredibly some paper pushing editor must have thought this story would offend our sensitivities, and took it upon him or herself to remove it from the chronicles.
Strange that the work of Mr. Bradbury, a champion of free speech, is being edited.
Do not get this version! (I got hosed, but vowed to save my fellow readers from the same fate)!
The Martian Chronicles is one such book. Famously referred to by author Ray Bradbury as "a book of stories pretending to be a novel", the disparate parts somehow come together to form something more than a novel. Like Tolkien's war of the ring, this story of the settlement of Mars and its aftermath transcends genre-fiction and somehow becomes more like fictional history -- or, in this case, a cautionary fable.
Throughout these stories, the reader encounters themes of xenophobia, imperialism, censorship, war, and racism (though the story dealing with this most directly, "Way in the Middle of the Air", where, back on Earth, all black people decide to emigrate to Mars, is stupidly cut from many of the later editions). Although Bradbury tends to stick to these broad strokes throughout, rather than focusing on individual characters, there are also stories that chronicle the more personal struggles of violence, fear, loneliness, and isolation. Yet somehow it never manages to get mired down in its own bleak moralizing. Bradbury knows when to apply a light touch, and it never feels as if he is lecturing or proselytizing.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting take from the 1940's era on space travel and planet colonization. If you consider the time when this was written, it is remarkable and hopeful of how humans might... Read morePublished 17 days ago by Spkeasy
The whispy voice of the narrator removed any body and substance from the stories by the end of the book. Good content, terrible reading,Published 19 days ago by Robert Slingsby
This book has aged very well. I could easily see this being any planet, not even necessarily Mars, especially as probes and other exploration continues to unlock its mystery.Published 1 month ago by Anty
This has always been one of my favorite books.
Stories linked together but still wonderful tales in their own right.
Ray Bradbury is my new favorite author after reading this book.Published 2 months ago by sara gilles