The Illustrated Man is classic Bradbury - a collection of tales that breathe and move, animated by sharp, intaken breath and flexing muscle. Here are eighteen startling visions as keen as the tattooist's needle and as colorful as the inks that indelibly stain the body. The images, ideas, sounds, and scents that abound in this phantasmagoric sideshow are provocative and powerful: the mournful cries of celestial travelers cast out cruelly into a vast, empty space of stars and blackness; the sight of grey dust settling over a forgotten outpost on a road that leads nowhere; the pungent odor of Jupiter on a returning father's clothing. Here living cities take their vengeance, technology awakens the most primal natural instincts, Martian invasions are foiled by the good life and the glad hand, and dreams are carried aloft in junkyard rockets. Bradbury's The Illustrated Man is a kaleidoscopic blending of magic, imagination, and truth, widely believed to be one of the grandmaster's premier accomplishments: as exhilarating as interplanetary travel, as maddening as a walk in a million-year rain, and as comforting as simple, familiar rituals on the last night of the world.
©1979 Ray Bradbury (P)2010 Tantor
That Ray Bradbury will ultimately be remembered as one of the finest writers of fiction of the 20th century is a virtual certainty, and the stories contained in this collection are some of the best examples of his remarkable body of work. The bujilding suspense and ultimate horror of "The Veldt." The unrelenting despair of "The Long Rain." The gentle wistfulness of "The Rocket Man." These stories are Bradbury at the peak of his powers and are treasures, each unto itself. Tied together in this volume they represent a literary feast.
I could go on and on about Bradbury, but the other real treasure of this edition is Scott Brick's absolutely remarkable narration. Brick captures every emotion that Bradbury wrote into these stories, delivering them with mastery, feeling and style that often transform passages from prose to pure poetry. I found myself often backing up a disk (I burn to CDs) just to hear Brick's delivery of a passage once again. Whenever I acquire an audiobook read by Scott Brick I expect a wonderful listening experience, but this reading was off the charts. Immediately prior to this edition I hear Brick's reading of Bradbury's "The Martian Chronicles," which was also wonderful. However, in the case of "The Illustrated Man," something about his reading was different, deeper, more engaged and immersed in the tone and meaning of the stories. This is one of the best audiobook experiences I have ever enjoyed.
Loved this collection and the performance of it. Really drives into a lot of the pressure points in the genre.
Any one notice though, the narrator's character voices all sound like they are just on the verge of weeping, no matter who they are or what they're doing? It's really effective, but gets sorta old after a bunch of these stories in a row.
Love the stories but the reader irritates me, not his voice but the constant inflection in the downward direction. He should reserve those tones for endings. I'm going to avoid this reader in the future.
My sincere apologies for my original review maligning the performance, the speed was wrong on my device. I corrected that and the rest of my listening experience was good.
I remember these stories from when I was a kid,The Vekt always being my favorite, but now that I'm all grown up and listened to these, I found several more that I'd either forgotten or just never understood when I was a kid so didn't remember. Made me buy the movie so I can watch that again too. It was fun "reading" this book again after so many years.
This book had just about everything I wanted from a novel. Space travel, time travel, deception and wacky stories altogether. The narraration was great, but to keep up, I had to read it on at least 1.25x or else the narration was a bit slow.
The Illustrated Man is a telling of the stories of each illustration tattooed on his body. Each story is told like an episode of Rod Serling's Night Gallery. Most of the stories have a deeper message within it. I would be interested to hear how the last two generations view these stories since some of the features of technology are no longer fiction but actuality. I also wonder how they would view some of the social issues that are no longer present today. Makes one wonder if Bradbury saw the future or if the readers of the past were so enamored by his ideas they sought to bring them to fruition.
It took me the first short story to get really into the idea but they are all truly amazing! I would say maybe two of them I didn't care for, but that is a pretty good amount! Highly recommend if you want a thought provoking collection.
"As relevant today as when written"
It is amazing to think these stories were written in the 1940s to early 50s. The sociopolitical comment in stories like The Other Foot are as relevant today as then. Be aware there us little or no gap between the stories on the recording, shame, as the narrator does a good job
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