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Kristine Swenson

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  • Fahrenheit 451

  • By: Ray Bradbury
  • Narrated by: Tim Robbins
  • Length: 5 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,270
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,085
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,073

Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television "family."

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I'm Burnin', I'm Burnin' for You

  • By W Perry Hall on 10-22-14

Classic dystopian science fiction

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-06-18

I'd almost completely forgotten this text, having not read it since high school (or maybe jr high). Anyone into the current spate of dystopian fiction should know this 1953 text, which contains many of the elements one finds in later science fiction (e.g., _Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep_ [aka, Bladerunner], _Hunger Games_, the _Divergent_ series). It's slower and more philosophical than these, but that's a good thing in that this pace helps to uncover the philosophical underpinnings of more plot-driven narratives.

  • 4 3 2 1

  • A Novel
  • By: Paul Auster
  • Narrated by: Paul Auster
  • Length: 37 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 497
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 456
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 459

Nearly two weeks early, on March 3, 1947, in the maternity ward of Beth Israel Hospital in Newark, New Jersey, Archibald Isaac Ferguson, the one and only child of Rose and Stanley Ferguson, is born. From that single beginning, Ferguson's life will take four simultaneous and independent fictional paths. Four identical Fergusons made of the same DNA, four boys who are the same boy, go on to lead four parallel and entirely different lives. Family fortunes diverge. Athletic skills and sex lives and friendships and intellectual passions contrast.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Too much detail.

  • By Jax on 03-03-17

Really long and really worth it.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-13-18

If you could sum up 4 3 2 1 in three words, what would they be?

non-linear
sweeping
immersive

What did you like best about this story?

The most interesting aspect of this novel was how Auster went back and forth among the four possible life paths that his protagonist might have taken. Eventually, one of the four is prioritized, but only at the end. This points to the contingency of our lives and the ways in which random events can shape them in fundamental ways.

Which scene was your favorite?

One scene that sticks out--and seems to keep coming back--is when a pre-teen Archie runs out in the middle of a thunderstorm at summer camp to stand under a tree. He does it on impulse but the consequences are enormous.

If you could rename 4 3 2 1, what would you call it?

Archies

Any additional comments?

Takes place over the second half of the 20th century in New Jersey and New York and Paris primarily, so it's also a period piece of the baby boomer generation, the Civil Rights Movement and race riots, Viet Nam......All four story lines were believable and despite all logic, the form was not confusing. I came away with the sense that all four Archies somehow contributed to a whole person.

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