Ray Bradbury Message Board

Nick UMD posts on 8/15/2008 6:31:47 PM This was also the first Bradbury book I have read. A very unique read. Some chapters were 20 pages and others were not even 2, yet each one is a pivotal piece to the novel. The various short stories are very evident and its easy to see how Bradbury started as a comic book writer. The story itself carries some powerful themes. Invasion of another culture, and the greed of the earth men, racism, as well as censorship. I enjoyed the section where Bradbury essentially calls out censorship by having William Stendahl kill the members of the Moral climate. I later found out that "The Martian Chronicles" as well as another Bradbury book "Fahrenheit 451" had been censored in some schools. Obviously Bradbury has no problem attacking his critics, suggesting he is controversial, which is usually a good thing in my opinion. Overall I enjoyed this read.
rybax003 posts on 8/12/2008 11:38:12 AM This was the first Ray Bradbury book I have read. I thought the way it was written was very interesting. The many short stories that make up this book kept me reading. Each story had something different from other stories in the book. For example, each expedition had something different that happened to the crew members once they arrived on Mars. This made me want to keep on reading. Another thing I found very interesting was that the reader never gets a detailed description of what is happening on Earth over the course of the book. We have an idea that Earth is being destroyed by the inhabitant's desire for innovation and power, but we never get an explanation of what is happening throughout the book. I think this adds a mysterious feeling to the writing. It made me want to read on to find out what was happening to Earth. After reading this book, I did some research on Ray Bradbury to find out more about his life and writing styles. I found that he uses his basement as his place to write. The basement is filled with books and other items that he has collected over the years. I think that this may have given him the inspiration to write The Martian Chronicles with a bunch of short stories. Throughout the writing process he may have used different inspirations found in his basement to inspire certain chapters of the book. Does anyone else think his writing environment may have contributed to him creating this great book? Do you think other writers surround themselves with things that inspire them?
thor0506 posts on 8/3/2008 9:41:38 PM As with Giovanni Gioia's post, The Martian Chronicles is the second Bradbury novel I have read. The first novel of his I have read was Fahrenheit 451. I did not enjoy that novel, probably due to the fact I had to read it in my sophmore year of high school and at that time I did not care for reading books. Despite my lack of interest with Fahrenheit 451, I enjoyed The Martian Chronicles very much. This story left me wanting to read more and not put the book down. I think this was because I could relate to the destruction of the Martian race with looking at our own history of colonization and destroying the Native American's land during the American frontier days. Back then, many Native Americans were killed by diseases brought by colonizers just like how the Martians died off my humans bring chicken pox to Mars.

Joy Hepokoski posts on 7/16/2008 2:53:13 PM I loved, loved, loved this book! The format was great- the short stories made it quite a page-turner. My favorite stories were The Third Expedition and Usher II. In The Third Expedition, I loved the depth of the deception used by the martians- impersonating the families of the crew to such detail. It was interesting how effective that was in making the guards lower their defenses, even though the whole idea that there would be a town with all their families there was totally impractical. What I liked about Usher II had a lot to do with detail too. I found it amusing what lengths Mr. Stendahl went to to create such an eerie environment. He had machines to blot out the sun and copper bats with rubber flesh. The detail was so meticulous- a rat, when kicked, "from its nylon fur streamed an incredible horde of metal fleas." I liked this story, too, because I've read a lot of Poe stories and it was fun to see the unsuspecting guests fall victim the way they did in the stories.
nabe0016 posts on 7/1/2008 9:31:18 PM I thought The Martian Chronicles was an intriguing book, though due to the choppy nature and slow pace it took a while for me to get interested in it. But as I got used to the writing style, I started to enjoy the little vignettes within the novel. When remembering the book as a whole, the things that stand out are the setting, overall plot, and themes more so than all the individual characters and stories. Like Cody Cunningham and Luke82 alluded to earlier, the book made a point of how humans have a tendency to destroy things, or fix things that don't need to be fixed. I agree with this to a point, but I think Bradbury went above and beyond talking about humanity's faults. The Martians were arguably no better than the humans, if taking the view that humans are destructive - in one of the first chapters, Mr. K went out and shot the visiting Earth-men. The Martians were portrayed as kind later in the book, when in the chapter Night Meeting the Martian talked about a beautiful city full of life. For both humans and Martians, Bradbury wrote about the good and the bad in each race, suggesting that human nature is in fact a universal concept.
okonumd posts on 6/29/2008 2:38:44 PM Mrs. K relationship with Nathaniel York was purely "telepathic" but in a sense romantic also. It seemed that they only interacted with each other in dreams, or at least Mrs. K dreamed about him. She felt that it was extremely real. Mr. K is scared and upset, the book leads us to believe that York is actually real but Mr. K went out to the forest where he landed and shot him.
Sarah posts on 6/24/2008 8:40:14 PM I thought that the book The Martian Chronicles was a very interesting book. At first I didn't like it because it was pretty slow, but when you received more information about the Earth people mixing in with the martians, it was harder to put the book down. What intrigued me was that the martians thought that the earth men were just martians that were hallucinating. When one of the crews landed on mars, they were trying to get attention from the martians. No one seemed to care that they were there, and it wasn't a big deal. The books goes into the story of how the martian race was destroyed from the humans.
Luke82 posts on 6/19/2008 6:48:02 PM I thought the best part of The Martian Chronicles was the way Bradbury humanized them. For the most part they just went about their daily lives, and like human beings they fear outsiders (at least at the beginning). The book also poses the question of whether human beings are truly a productive species, or do we just rape and pillage whatever we come into contact with?
Cody Cunningham UMD posts on 6/11/2008 6:50:10 PM I really enjoyed The Martian Chronicles. I really love the way Bradbury writes and describes this new and almost unimaginable world, but while reading the book I couldn't but trying to imagine Mars as he describes. Every time I think of Mars now I envision how Bradbury has described it... blue mountains and all. I was really thrown for a loop at the beginning of the book though, when the second expedition lands and gets thrown in the Looney-bin. It wasn't until the captain actually fully explains what is happening to them that I could fully understand what was happening to him and his crew. I like how the book is pieced together with seemingly random stories yet they all build on each other and help you better understand the final chronicles of the book. Even after I was done reading the book I was still left wondering whether the other family shows up in their rocket with their four little girls and if the Human race continues and starts again on Mars or if it is the end of man-kind. Though a majority of the book is fiction, earth being destroyed by nuclear war seems all too real and definitely a possible end to the human race. I almost wish the book described this Great War in more detail. In all I thought this was a great book about humanity and it's need to try and fix things that don't need to be fixed, and how blind humanity can be in realizing certain things and destroying others.
Giovanni Gioia posts on 6/4/2008 5:07:19 PM The Martian Chronicles is the second Bradbury novel I have read. The first was Fahrenheit 451. When I started the Martian Chronicles, I was excited to see how Bradbury would develop e the plot line. I was very pleased with the outcome. Bradbury's thoughts and imagination was well before his time. Even though man has not been to Mars personally, or has entered into a nuclear war, it seems that may be the path that we are on. I think my favorite part of the book is when the character Stendahl builds a house inspired by Edgar Allen Poe to lure the “moral climate movement” to his house to kill them, to get revenge for all the literature and academic material they destroyed in Fahrenheit 451. It was really creative of Bradbury to tie two books together which made the book even more enjoyable for me.
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