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Something Wicked This Way Comes: A Novel by…
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Something Wicked This Way Comes: A Novel (original 1963; edition 2017)

by Ray Bradbury (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
8,045215619 (3.98)4 / 466
Member:brendajanefrank
Title:Something Wicked This Way Comes: A Novel
Authors:Ray Bradbury (Author)
Info:Simon & Schuster (2017), 352 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:sci fi, audio book, horror

Work details

Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury (1963)

1960s (84)
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English (212)  German (1)  Finnish (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (215)
Showing 1-5 of 212 (next | show all)
I don't usually rate or review a book I haven't finished, and I only got through roughly 40% of this one, but I'm definitely DONE with it, and the process up till now was such a tortuous and deeply unpleasant one that I think the best way to get it out of my system is to bitch about it a little (or a lot). It's a good thing I've read and enjoyed several things by Ray Bradbury before, because had this been my only experience of him I'd have sworn him off forever and ever based on this single experience, because yes, it was THAT dreadful.

To be clear, in the month of October, I like to read some horror fiction, so the spookiness factor had nothing to do with my unpleasant impression of this book. What I was spooked with was how convoluted every single SENTENCE was. How not a single paragraph was straightforward. Like advancing through a deep fog of nightmare. If that was what Bradbury set out to do, to create this incredibly gross impression, as opposed to just telling a story, then he succeeded. So much so that I lost all interest in finding out what the story was all about because who gives a fuck at this point? The experience was akin to biting down on a fork repeatedly, or constant screechings on a chalkboard (remember those?), or flyaway hairs persistently getting on your face, or any number of deeply annoying things you just want to END because they will infuriate you to no end. Everything had to be a simile of a simile of a simile like that labyrinth of mirrors in the carnival he mentions again and again. And for what Mr. Bradbury? What was the fucking point? And why do so many of my friends LOVE this book??? Whatever the reason, I have only so much patience, and you've taken up too much of it with this insufferable dredge. I was put off right from the beginning with the style he employed and I thought I'd try to stick with it because "this is Ray Bradbury after all", but really I should have stuck with my first instinct and dropped it right away because my latest effort at trying to get into the spirit of the thing has put me in a terrible mood indeed and I am livid, because one thing I've come expect from my reading life more than ever is a safe escape from the insufferably annoying nightmare which is living in 2018. /rant over. ( )
1 vote Smiler69 | Oct 11, 2018 |
This book will creep you out. ( )
  Katie80 | Oct 8, 2018 |
Bradbury's language is mesmerizing in this audiobook.. I think of this as a lyrical parable or allegory (not up on my definitions) of good and evil and the choices we make in life and the value of living your life without rushing forward, or longing to go back. It's also a very effective view of small town life in the middle of America. Glad I read it. ( )
  ffortsa | Oct 7, 2018 |
Purple prose got in the way of what I thought was going to be great book. I could not get through two chapters. I will never say don't read a book, so I won't. Instead I'll say read the sample and see if it's for you. If so, buy it. If not, then don't. I will say though, this is twice now I've been recommended a book and was given a stinker (my opinion). I'll stick to my own eyeball test from now on. To let you know, I pay for every book I read so that's why my opinions sound strong. But they're not angry, really. I giggled while writing this. I'm not a cheapskate either, but this is the first book that I wished I had not bought. ( )
  anthonypuyo | Aug 12, 2018 |
Wow! This book has received so much praise since it was released that I finally decided to read it. I definitely never read it as a kid.
So some books can stand the test of time and even though life, and language and technology change the story if well told survives. That was most definitely not the case for me, regarding this story.
I have no idea when this story was supposed to take place but the way the dialogue drags, it could have been the late 1800’s or early 1900’s , or heck I don’t know the 1940’s or 1950’s. But this was one terribly uninteresting story.
And while you can definitely see how this book influenced Stephen King, Mr King’s books are far more readable, and better. ( )
  zmagic69 | Jul 9, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 212 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ray Bradburyprimary authorall editionscalculated
康雄, 大久保Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gorey, EdwardCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Brien, TimCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pennington, BruceCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wölfl, NorbertÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Man is in love, and loves what vanishes.
W.B. Yeats

They sleep not, except they have done mischief;
And their sleep is taken away,
  unless they cause some to fall.
For they eat the bread of wickedness,
And they drink the wine of violence.
Proverbs 4:16-17

I know not all that may be coming, but be it what it will, I'll go to it laughing.
Stubb in Moby Dick
Dedication
With gratitude to
Jennet Johnson
who taught me how to write the short story
and to
Snow Longley Housh
who taught me poetry at Los Angeles High School a long time ago
and to
Jack Guss
who helped with this novel not so long ago
With love to the memory of GENE KELLY, whose performances influenced and changed my life
First words
Prologue
First of all, it was October, a rare month for boys.
The seller of lightning rods arrived just ahead of the storm.
Quotations
Why love the woman who is your wife? Her nose breathes in the air of a world that I know; therefore I love that nose. Her ears hear music I might sing half the night through; therefore I love her ears. Her eyes delight in seasons of the land; and so I love those eyes. Her tongue knows quince, peach, chokeberry, mint and lime; I love to hear it speaking. Because her flesh knows heat, cold, affliction, I know fire, snow, and pain. Shared and once again shared experience. Billions of prickling textures. Cut one sense away, cut part of life away. Cut two senses; life halves itself on the instant. We love what we know, we love what we are. Common cause, common cause, of mouth, eye, ear, tongue, hand, nose, flesh, heart, and soul.
"Sometimes the man who looks happiest in town, with the biggest smile, is the one carrying the biggest load of sin. There are smiles and smiles; learn to tell the dark variety from the light. The seal-barker, laugh-shouter, half the time he's covering up. He's had his fun and he's guilty. And men do love sin. Will, oh how they love it, never doubt, in all shapes, sizes, colors, and smells. Times come when troughs, not tables, suit our appetites. Hear a man too loudly praising others and look to wonder if he didn't just get up from the sty. On the other hand, that unhappy, pale, put-upon man walking by, who looks all guilt and sin, why, often that's your good man with a capitol G, Will. For being good is a fearful occupation; men strain at it and sometimes break in two. I've known a few. You work twice as hard to be a farmer as his to be his hog. I suppose it's thinking about being good that makes the crack run up the wall one night. A man with high standards, too, the least hair falls on him sometimes wilts his spine. He can't let himself alone, won't lift himself off the hook if he falls just a breath from grace."
And, Will thought, here comes the carnival, Death like a rattle in one hand, Life like candy in the other; shake one to scare you, offer one to make your mouth water. Here comes the side show, both hands full!
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0380729407, Mass Market Paperback)

A masterpiece of modern Gothic literature, Something Wicked This Way Comes is the memorable story of two boys, James Nightshade and William Halloway, and the evil that grips their small Midwestern town with the arrival of a "dark carnival" one Autumn midnight. How these two innocents, both age 13, save the souls of the town (as well as their own), makes for compelling reading on timeless themes. What would you do if your secret wishes could be granted by the mysterious ringmaster Mr. Dark? Bradbury excels in revealing the dark side that exists in us all, teaching us ultimately to celebrate the shadows rather than fear them. In many ways, this is a companion piece to his joyful, nostalgia-drenched Dandelion Wine, in which Bradbury presented us with one perfect summer as seen through the eyes of a 12-year-old. In Something Wicked This Way Comes, he deftly explores the fearsome delights of one perfectly terrifying, unforgettable autumn. --Stanley Wiater

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:18 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

A strange carnival brings terror to the population of a small midwestern town.

(summary from another edition)

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