Celebrated author Ray Bradbury passed away today at the age of 91. I have several of Bradbury’s books, well worn from the hours I spent reading and re-reading them.
With his death comes a renewed interest in his work. Younger folk who have never read his stories are asking where they should start. To them, I say this:
Bradbury is very different than most authors, and when you first read his unusual style you will either love him or hate him. That said, this is the order that I recommend you ease into reading his work:
- Fahrenheit 451 (this was poorly made into a movie but it is a must-read classic, along the lines of 1984)
- Something Wicked This Way Comes (probably my favorite of all)
- The Martian Chronicles (probably his most notable, after Fahrenheit 451, deservedly so)
- Illustrated Man (short stories, very strange, very different, very riveting)
- Dandelion Wine (if you liked Something Wicked, you’ll like this one)
- I Sing the Body Electric (especially if you want more short stories – he was a master of short stories)
I am jealous of anyone discovering Bradbury for the first time and loving him as much as I do. It is a rare and wonderful experience.
Rest in peace, Mr. Bradbury. And thank you for the many, many hours of entertainment.