The world lost one of its greatest voices in science fiction when Ray Bradbury passed away at age 91. He was a true pioneer in speculative fiction, writing about colonizing Mars, strange towns with odd inhabitants, and nefarious circuses that come to town. His story “I Sing the Body Electric” is one of the more memorable episodes of The Twilight Zone, and to one-up Rod Serling, Bradbury wrote six seasons of his own anthology series, The Ray Bradbury Theater. His most famous novel, Fahrenheit 451 is still relevant today in a world where censorship is rampant, governments try to control freedom of speech, and American citizens willingly participate in book burnings; it’s odd that there has only been one film version of that book, Francois Truffaut‘s first English-language movie. Bradbury’s stories were not about violence or technology like so much of science fiction, but about humanity and how people deal with the strange situations that befall them. His prose was a bit strange and tended to be playful and quirky, which is what made his writing so unique. He was an inspiration to countless writers, filmmakers, and fans. If you have never read anything by Ray Bradbury, do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of The Martian Chronicles or Dandelion Wine or Something Wicked This Way Comes or any of his other marvelous imaginative works. You could probably even find Farenheit 451 on Kindle. Perhaps it’s fitting that he died on the day that Venus was in transit.
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