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Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray…

Something Wicked This Way Comes (original 1963; edition 1999)

by Ray Bradbury

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7,450196468 (3.97)4 / 433
Title:Something Wicked This Way Comes
Authors:Ray Bradbury
Info:Harper Voyager (1999), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:Your library

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Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury (1963)


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Showing 1-5 of 194 (next | show all)
We really went outside our square this month with our first ever fantasy title! Grant it, Ray Bradbury is considered one of the masters, but it was still a stretch for some of us, and not all together an enjoyable experience.
As often happens with our group, we were divided in our praise and criticisms. Some found it disturbing, too negative, distasteful and simply unnerving. Although, interestingly enough, these same voices were quick to add that the writing was very good! Maybe a little too good one might think ... is this why they were so uncomfortable with the story?

The remaining views were of a more positive nature. The theme was intriguing, the writing style wonderfully imaginative, and a first line grabber that had even Anne reading on. Viti found the circus theme drew her in and brought back memories of the travelling shows of her youth. She also found much symbolism throughout the story which is to her liking (and ours, we can always depend on Viti for these references!).

Similarities to Stephen King's style was mentioned and many of us agreed that the popular fantasy author no doubt read Bradbury as a young, promising writer.

Some were inspired to read more Bradbury, in particular Fahrenheit 451 and to also do a little research on the author. It was remarked that his wonderfully imaginative works may be attributed to his lack of higher education and not having his creativity educated out of him.
Certainly food for thought. Maybe we need more writers with a freer style. Then again, maybe someone as unique as Bradbury would then fail to stand out.
  jody12 | Feb 13, 2017 |
This was my Halloween book for 2016, and it did not disappoint in its appropriateness. I loved certain passages so much I wanted to highlight them, but the actual story somehow had something missing. When I figure out what it is, I will update my review. I must say, though, that it is very similar in some ways to Dandelion Wine, but much darker (obviously) and not as good. I felt like Bradbury actually set up a bigger plot than he was able to handle, leaving what seemed to me to be loose ends all over the place. I would have given 3.5 stars if I could. ( )
  aurelas | Dec 23, 2016 |
A Dark Carnival comes to town, promising to give people what they want, but turning their own dark desires against them and making them slaves of the Carnival. One middle aged man and two teens fight and win, with laughter. I don't like Bradbury's writings. I shall not be reading anymore. His style annoys me. Patricia McKillip writes of shadows and so does Bradbury; however, McKillip's shadows come from the Light, Bradbury's shadows come from the Dark. I don't want to fill myself with shadows from the Dark. ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Dec 10, 2016 |
Some argue that this is Bradbury's masterpiece, although I think the Martian Chronicles just shades it, but that's just personal preference. Bradbury's writing here has a poetic quality to it that some may find hard to fathom, but stick with it, because this book has lots to say. The tale of two boys, Jim Nightshade and Will Halloway, on the cusp of their 14th birthdays, and the carnival that shows up outside their small town that changes them forever, Something Wicked This Way Comes takes us on a journey into the heart of darkness. Bradbury touches on what it means to be a friend, the hopes and fears of the two boys, the seductive power of the dark forces marshalled against them by the freaks of the Pandemonium Shadow Show, and the power of good to triumph over evil. For me, the stand out character is Will's father, Charles Halloway, the town library's janitor and a distant, remote figure to Will, seemingly incapable of communicating with his son. But the events of the few days and nights covered by the book change all that, with Halloway discovering a power within himself he never knew he had, and discovering that the way to defeat evil is to deny them the weapons they would use against us. The way Will begins to see his father in a new light by the end of the story is quite moving. Recommended. ( )
  David.Manns | Nov 28, 2016 |
What can you say, It’s Ray Bradbury. The lyrical words in a scary tale that haunts two boys’ lives. A fantastic read. ( )
  caanderson | Nov 13, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ray Bradburyprimary authorall editionscalculated
康雄, 大久保Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Brien, TimCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pennington, BruceCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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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
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
First of all, it was October, a rare month for boys.
The seller of lightning rods arrived just ahead of the storm.
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!
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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)

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Ray Bradbury's classic tale of a mysterious carnival arriving in a small town.

(summary from another edition)

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