Thursday, June 7, 2012

Rest in Peace: Ray Bradbury

I've never met Ray Bradbury. I don't know if that's a good thing or a loss, but now I will never have the chance to meet him. You see, Ray Bradbury died on Tuesday, June 5. When I found out today, it really threw me for a loops. And while Neil Gaiman has posted/re-posted this really fantastic piece about him, I really wanted to write about how his books has impacted me.

You see, I studied Fahrenheit 451 for my O levels, roughly four years ago. While I've always liked literature and enjoyed reading this book, I think it's safe to say that this was the book we loved as a cohort. I believe even the girls who didn't study literature knew the story and could quote it's famous first line:

"It was a pleasure to burn."

Even now, just mentioning Fahrenheit 451 will be enough to get two MG girls who studied it into a discussion on the book and how marvellous it was. It's a book about censorship, and even though it was written so long ago, it's as relevant today as it was. Plus, I like to say that he predicted the ATM (the automated tellers that were "open all night every night.").

In fact, I think it's way better than 1984. I read that book a bit later (during my IB years) and it didn't have the same impact as Fahreheit 451 did for me. I simply wasn't as captivated with it as I was with Fahrenheit 451.

One of the saddest news I got after graduating was when I found out that MG was changing the syllabus. I think my sister/friends and I all complained for some time. Sad times. Well, the book has changed several cohorts of MG girls so while I'm happy for that, I wish the other girls get a chance to study it too.

Stella is here now and she wants me to add about Beatty's death. To her, that was the most memorable thing in the book. So you see, we all have our own particular memories of the book.

Rest in Peace Ray Bradbury, you will be missed by many MG girls. And all your readers.

And if you're looking for things to read about/by Ray Bradbury, I found this Remembering Ray Bradbury Collection on Byliner :D

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