9 best books by Ray Bradbury

Review of the best according to the editorial board. On the selection criteria. This material is subjective and does not constitute advertising and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.

Everyone knows Ray Bradbury, even those who have not read the author's works. The name of this man has long gone beyond the genre of fantasy. Today he is a recognized legend in foreign literature. Once, due to poor eyesight, Ray could not get into military service, it was hard to endure the ongoing Cold War, but still he was able to overcome difficulties and build a brilliant career that lasted more than seventy years. A large number of stories, plays, and also novels came out from the pen of the writer, some of which were included in the lists of books that must be read.

Bradbury saw how modern society is increasingly addicted to various gadgets and technologies, so he was sincerely afraid that at some point this would lead to disastrous consequences. The author devoted his dystopias to this topic and was against the electronic format of publishing his works.

Our experts have prepared a rating that includes 9 books by Ray Bradbury, which every person should read.

Rating of the best books by Ray Bradbury

Nomination a place title of the work rating
Rating of the best books by Ray Bradbury 1 '451 degrees Fahrenheit' 5.0
2 'Dandelion Wine' 4.9
3 'The Martian Chronicles' 4.8
4 'Summer morning, summer night' 4.7
5 'A Sound of Thunder' 4.6
6 'Man in Pictures' 4.5
7 'All summer in one day' 4.4
8 'Trouble is Coming' 4.3
9 'Death is a lonely business' 4.2

'451 degrees Fahrenheit'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 5.0


The futuristic novel is in the lead, one of the most famous of the writer. The work is included in the secondary school curriculum. The book was written in just nine days, in the early fifties, but the relevance over time is not lost, but increases. Ray was an advocate of libraries and paper-based books. I was afraid that people would stop reading literature altogether. Bradbury outlined his fears and vision of the future on the pages of the work.

The reader is presented with a world filled with thoughtless entertainment, where everyone's eyes are fixed on the TV. People do not communicate with each other, do not reflect and do not need literature. Now firefighters are needed not to put out flames, but to burn books that have become anachronistic. In an interview with The Associated Press in the early 2000s, the writer will say that the novel is based on real facts and on the hatred he has for those who burn books. The name has a special meaning, since 451 degrees Fahrenheit is the temperature at which paper is burned.

Dystopia tells of a government that forbids the people not only to read, but also to keep any works, and this is done supposedly for the good. The main character, Guy Montag, once meets a young woman who rediscovered the world and made her look at familiar things from a different angle. Working for a totalitarian state as a firefighter leads Montag to one of the houses where books were found, but instead of burning everything, the hero takes part of the works home, as he experiences an inexplicable urge and interest. Guy hides literature behind a ventilation grill. When on one of the shifts he sees a woman burning herself, he decides to quit his job, but first he takes only one sick leave, who wants to spend on understanding what is happening and studying the books stored in the house. For help, the hero turns to the old man Faber, who accidentally met in the park. After discussion, they conclude an agreement to save the books. So Guy goes to the resistance camp. Having got involved in this dangerous game, he becomes a renegade, and now his house, after the report of the neighbors, must be set on fire. How will the hero get out of this situation? Will he surrender under pressure from the authorities or will he continue to fight?

'Dandelion Wine'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.9


The second line goes to a partly autobiographical story, which takes place in the late twenties, in a fictional place called Green Town. The site has a prototype – the author's hometown, Waukegan, Illinois. The reader will be able to live one summer with a twelve-year-old boy, Douglas, and his ten-year-old friend. From the pages, everyone learns what events can happen in three solar months.

The story begins with descriptions of the routine of the American province. Of the simple joys, the only thing that can be done is to make wine from dandelion petals. This process becomes the central action of the story. Wine becomes not just a vessel for liquid, but also a metaphorical bottle for storing the joys of summer. Even despite the absence of the fantasy theme familiar to many readers of Bradbury's books, the magic of ordinary life situations that revolve around the boy and his friend is mesmerizing. It is impossible to re-experience such feelings and emotions at a different age, so the guys hope that now positive emotions, along with dandelion wine, are hidden in ninety bottles.

The story consists of several small mini-stories linked by characters. Numerous reviews and reviews say that readers are amazed at how accurately the author conveyed the summer atmosphere. For example, the scene with the hanging of a swing, near which the whole family gathers in the pre-sunset time, watching the setting sun and listening to crickets with cicadas. There is no need to try to read the work excitedly, because, trying page after page like a sip after sip, everyone will remember their own childhood, filled with inexplicable magic. Suitable for a wide readership.

'The Martian Chronicles'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.8


The third position is given to the novel, which made its debut in the fiftieth year. It is this book that brings Bradbury worldwide fame. The story is about people militantly colonizing the utopian Martian nation. The work consists of a chain of interconnected stories, and each ridicules social problems that were relevant at that time and remain so to this day – over-struggle for power over the planet, capitalism, racism, etc.

From the first pages it is clear that we are not talking about Mars, but about the Earth, which is being destroyed by people themselves. The action begins in the late nineties, when a huge rocket is being built, capable of traveling sixty million light years to reach the red planet. In winter, they organize an expedition consisting of daredevils who risked the first to go on a dangerous journey. In parallel, the author acquaints the reader with one Martian inhabitant – Mrs. K. She has been having strange dreams about aliens for several nights. Sharing her fears with her husband, the woman mentions the name of a stranger, Nathaniel York, who is among the invaders. Mr. K laughs at the quirks of the second half, because people with pale skin and light blue eyes cannot exist, and there is no life on Earth due to the inconsistency of the atmosphere. Meanwhile, on Earth, wars do not stop and destroy more and more cities. America is being bombed every now and then, and Australia almost went under water from constant explosions. People run to Mars for salvation, but find destruction. Expedition after expedition are defeated in strange circumstances. The reader will have to find out whether people will be able to colonize the red planet and what difficulties they will face.

The book is written in an interesting, accessible language and therefore easy to read. It will be of interest to all space travel lovers, as well as people who want to look at the modern world through the metaphors of Ray Bradbury.

'Summer morning, summer night'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.7


In fourth place in the rating is an amazing work, about which one critic said that he was as drunk as 'Dandelion Wine', refreshing like an apple and an apricot, like water, which you swallow with thirst, waking up in the middle of the night, from a cool tin ladle. Readers will have to plunge into the unique atmosphere of Greentown, where summer does not end. The book is a collection of stories, twenty-seven of them in total, bearing deep meaning and the mood of warm days.

Each story is filled with simplicity and lightness, however, there is a downside, otherwise it would not be so interesting. The stories are united by the author's writing style. Plunging into the book, one learns the fate of the heroes, intertwined with the greenery of nature, love and death. The reviews note that the most significant were the stories' A Scream from Under the Ground ',' All Summer in One Night ',' Fireflies', 'Anything Can Happen', 'Miss Bidwell', 'Seven-Arms',' Autumn Day ',' In June, in the dark hour of night ',' There and back ',' Summer walk 'and' At the end of summer '. All the stories of the collection taken together look like a single whole, although they tell about different people and events. In one – wonderful allegories of the fire and love of a young girl; in another – a heartfelt love story, for which the age difference is not an obstacle, but quite the opposite; in another – emotional indifference; in the next – the sharpness of sensations and experiences. Everywhere there are different endings, destinies, important life segments. Some of the heroes are spinning in a frantic dance, while others quietly and measuredly listen to the echoes of the past.

There are genuine feelings and emotions that the reader will experience, experiencing either sympathy and solidarity, or fear and excitement. Familiar characters from Dandelion Wine will be found on the pages of the collection. The book is perfect for those who love this novel. We advise you to read in cloudy cool weather to cheer up and feel the summer breeze filled with the aromas of herbs and flowers.

'A Sound of Thunder'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.6


The fifth is a story that tells about a passionate hunter who is fed up with the usual safari, so he goes back in time with a desire to hunt a dinosaur. The rules are strict, only one animal is allowed to be killed. At the heart of history is a theory called the butterfly effect, which says that even small changes in the past can have catastrophic consequences for the future. At the time of writing the story, this term did not exist, so the work was previously attributed to chaos theory. At the beginning of the two thousandth, a film adaptation of the same name took place.

The amateur hunter Eckels was informed by the head Travis about the rules – you cannot leave a special anti-gravity path, because even stepping on a blade of grass, you can start a chain of irreparable changes in the future; they are allowed to kill that tyrannosaur, who will soon die for natural reasons; at the end, it is necessary to remove traces of your stay in the past, including taking the bullets. At first everything went according to plan until the dinosaur met. Eckels did not expect to see such a huge beast. Strongly frightened, the main character leaves the path and runs wherever they look. While the rest of the group is fighting the dinosaur, he climbs into the time machine. Returning from a journey, the hunters discover global changes. Not the president, the language, even the person and the atmosphere of the Earth. Eckels notices that one of the boots has a crushed butterfly, which he accidentally crushed when he left the trail. Realizing all the horror, Eckels decides to go back and fix everything, but Travis takes the gun.

'And the thunder struck' is a harsh work, inexorable, like a stream of time, showing that some actions and mistakes cannot be made, because later it will be impossible to turn back in order to live the moment again. The story is instructive and makes you think about the human thirst for empty, and sometimes stupid and dangerous entertainment.

'Man in Pictures'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.5


The sixth position is received by a collection of eighteen stories on popular science topics written in the early fifties. The author tries to look into the human essence in order to understand and describe the reasons for certain actions. The struggle between psychology and technology is only growing, and in parallel, the reader is getting acquainted with the life of a tattooed tramp, in other words, a person in pictures. Bradbury took this character from a previous collection called Dark Carnival.

Critics unanimously declare that 'Man in Pictures' is a collection of the heyday of the writer's creative powers. The topics raised on the pages will later form the basis of Ray's fantastic philosophy. The stories are united by one storyline about a decorated man, whose pictures on his body come to life at night, revealing to the reader now amazing, now terrible and frightening predictions of the future. All stories are sketches from the body of a vagrant. Before your eyes will appear: the frightening Veld; a city inhabiting people; chilling puppets who dream of taking the place of the originals; there will be a coming of Jesus to Mars; the eternal rain of Venus will pour; writers will move to the red planet along with the heroes of their works. A lot of everything fantastic, beautiful and at the same time terrible will happen.

The collection is filled with the magic of space and human vices. In the reviews, readers especially note six stories: 'Other times', 'Veld', 'Lesson hour', 'Concrete mixer', 'Cat and mouse', 'Cosmonaut'. The book will appeal even to those who are not interested in science fiction or are rather calm about this genre.

'All summer in one day'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.4


The seventh line goes to the story of child cruelty. The story is about a situation that occurs not only among children, because the feeling of black envy and the desire to make another meanness is present in people of all ages.

A simple plot revolves around a girl who has become an outcast in the class. The described school is located on Venus, where there are endless rains and the sky is covered with blue dark and heavy clouds hanging low over the passing ones. The sun appears here once every seven years and then for several hours. Of all the students, only Margot saw the sun. The girl had a bad life on the rainy planet, especially with the memories of the warmth radiated from the large yellow disk; about snow-white weightless clouds floating in the pale blue sky; about gentle warming rays touching the skin; about playing tag in the fresh air, not in damp underground corridors. Envy and hatred settle in the hearts of children who were offended that it was not they who saw the cherished star in the firmament. Such feelings are pushed to a cruel act towards Margot. This may cause condemnation in the reader, but Bradbury shows that not everything is so simple and, perhaps, in other circumstances, the students did not do this. But the truth remains unshakable – the situation has happened. Repentance overtakes only when the dark wet streets are illuminated by the first Sun in the life of children, but nothing can be fixed.

Despite the fact that the story is short, after a long time it will not be possible to let go of the experience. Reviews and reviews say that every line here is filled with meaning, over which you can think for hours. Suitable for a wide readership.

'Trouble is Coming'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.3

'Trouble is Coming'

The eighth is another small parable story. Unlike the previous one, it will focus on ominous events that are terrifying. The spooky carousel will spin as the first visitors enter the Mirror Maze. The festive carnival will turn into a tragedy, and the small city, the venue, will be at the mercy of evil forces. Only residents with a pure heart and soul will be able to save themselves and help others protect themselves from becoming a terrible zombie.

The reader will meet on the pages of a man in pictures and an old witch with sewn eyelids, as well as many other freaks living in a mobile amusement park. Seemingly ordinary tarpaulin – the black wings of an ancient bird; there is the smell of wild bloodthirsty animals in the cages, the carousel rotates in the opposite direction, and the mirror maze lures and does not let go. Promises of free tickets and fun daze the city dwellers in anticipation of the upcoming event. If not two boys, friends, everywhere and always following each other, everything could have ended very badly. Comrades, one with hair as white as down, and the other with black as a thistle, reveal the terrible secret of the carnival and the evil that he brings with him. The author gradually builds up fear from the first pages, preparing the reader for something that is about to happen.

This story is about the eternal battle of good in the face of light against evil in the face of darkness. Bradbury filled the story with symbolism, for example, the boys Willie Halloway and Jim Nightshall – light and shadow, which means a difficult choice in the life of every person. The main negative character, Mr. Dark, is a concentration of troubles and misfortunes, which can only be defeated by knowledge, kindness, mercy and smiles, because: 'do not try to let grief grab hold of your tears, it will sew smiles out of them.' Recommended for reading by everyone, especially teenagers.

'Death is a lonely business'

Book Author: Ray Bradbury

Rating: 4.2


Closes the rating of a detective novel, which takes place in California in the late forties, in a city called Venice. A series of brutal murders, unambiguously linked to each other. They catch the attention of a young aspiring writer (Bradbury prototype). Together with detective Elmo Crumley, the writer is trying to find out the circumstances of the incident. The book is based on real-life murders committed in Los Angeles from forty-two to fiftieth years. Bradbury then lived there and followed history with undisguised interest.

Events begin to unfold from a rainy evening, when the writer rides on a tram and hears the cry: “Death is a young thing!” After that, in the channel, he discovers a male corpse. Upon arrival at the scene of the policeman, he tries to prove that the death was not accidental. But the investigator is initially skeptical, and only when the bodies appear one after another, he undertakes to investigate the series. The main character, as a creative person, is a little out of this world, his perception of the environment is completely different, occurs on some other level. Crumley is also an unusual detective, so these two managed to work together from the first minutes. The characters have a strong resemblance, they need each other to bring the matter to a successful end. True, this does not exclude disputes and disagreements. The dialogues of the heroes are filled with sparkling jokes and sharp remarks, so they are especially interesting to read.

The book is full of subtle humor, and even against the background of the tragedy of what is happening, there is something to smile or laugh at. As many readers say, the author wrote a noir piece. And the highlight of the text was the atmosphere and interesting comparisons. The detective story, although it unfolds slowly, sharpens the intrigue with each turn, keeping attention. We recommend to all fans of the detective genre.

Attention! This rating is subjective and does not constitute an advertisement and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.

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