Archive for the ‘NOT SCIENCE FICTION’ Category

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NSF: “The Pumpernickel” by Ray Bradbury

February 20, 2012

The Book: “The Pumpernickel” by Ray Bradbury.   Originally published in Collier’s in May, 1951, the story was read in Long after Midnight published by Bantam in 1978.

The Setting: Small town Earth.

The Story: Bread reminds an old man of a happy time in his life.

The Science: Old people get a bit carried away by memory. This is not science fiction.

The Reaction: Another Bradbury vignette. Ho hum.

The Cover: Still not thrilled by it.

Next Up: Sands of Mars by Arthur C. Clarke.

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NSF: “The Great Fire” by Ray Bradbury

February 3, 2011

The Book: “The Great Fire” by Ray Bradbury. Originally published in 1949 by Triangle Publications. Story was read in The Golden Apples of the Sun by Ray Bradbury published by Bantum Books in 1961.

The Setting: Middle America.

The Story: A young lady enjoys going on dates.

The Science: Meh.

The Reaction: Meh.

The Cover: Same as usual.

Next Up: “The Blue Bottle” by Ray Bradbury

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NSF: “The October Game” by Ray Bradbury

November 3, 2010

The Book: “The October Game” by Ray Bradbury.  Originally published in the March 1948 edition of Weird Tales, the story was read in Long after Midnight published by Bantam in 1978.

The Setting: Halloween, middle America.

The Story: A man hates his wife and wants revenge on her. At a Halloween party, partygoers and the family sit around and play a game ala “This is the witch’s cold dead heart” which goes somewhat differently than the wife expected.

The Science: N/A

The Reaction: I liked reading it. It’s a short couple of scenes and has that implied horribleness that Bradbury specializes in.

The Cover: Same as before.

Next Up: “The Human Angle” by William Tenn

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NSF Double Header: “The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl” and “Powerhouse” by Ray Bradbury

October 18, 2010

The Book: “The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl” and “Powerhouse” by Ray Bradbury. “Fruit” was first published by Detective Book Magazine in November 1948. “Powerhouse” was also published in 1948, copyright Street and Smith Publications. Both were read in The Golden Apples of the Sun by Ray Bradbury published by Bantum Books in 1961.

The Setting: Earth.

The Story: “Fruit” – A murderer grows increasingly frantic that he has left fingerprints in his victim’s home. This is his downfall.

“Powerhouse” – A not religious woman has a religious experience at a remote desert power station.

The Science: Not science fiction, not relevant.

The Reaction: These are both lovely little stories. Bradbury has a way of establishing a story and a character very quickly. “Fruit” starts slow and whips itself into a frenzy, “Powerhouse” is slow and reverent throughout except for the climactic experience. Both very nice.

The Cover: Same as last time.

Next Up: Against the Fall of Night by Arthur C. Clarke

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NSF “I See You Never” by Ray Bradbury

October 12, 2010

The Book: “I See You Never” by Ray Bradbury.  Originally published in 1947 in The New Yorker magazine. Edition read in The Golden Apples of the Sun by Ray Bradbury published by Bantum Books in 1961.

The Setting: Los Angeles, CA. Earth.

The Story: A Mexican worker in Los Angeles who overstays his visa is deported and bids farewell to his landlady.

The Science: N/A

The Reaction: A nice enough story – one of those snapshot stories Bradbury loves.  Given the current fury of the immigration debate in this country, it was interesting to read this story from 1947.

The Cover: Same as last time.

Next Up: “Morning Star” by Robert Spencer Carr.

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NSF: “El Dia de Muerte” by Ray Bradbury

October 11, 2010

The Book: “El Dia de Muerte” by Ray Bradbury.  I can’t find any publishing data, but several sources indicate the story is from 1947.  Story was read in The Machineries of Joy, published by Bantum Books in 1965.

The Setting: Mexico City. Earth.

The Story: A child is killed and other things happen on the Day of the Dead in Mexico City.

The Science: N/A

The Reaction: I think it’s supposed to play as a snapshot of the day – many things happen, centered around a child, but I was mostly annoyed with it. I didn’t care.

The Cover: Awesome. A rocket, a psychedelic dinosaur/skull/cobweb mushroom, and a dimetron. Doesn’t make sense, but I’m loving it.

Next Up: NSF “I See You Never” by Ray Bradbury

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NSF Double Header.2 “The Miracles of Jamie” and “One Timeless Spring” by Ray Bradbury

September 3, 2010

The Book: “The Miracles of Jamie” and “One Timeless Spring” by Ray Bradbury.  Both originally published in magazines in 1946, they were read in Long after Midnight published by Bantam in 1978.

The Setting: Earth, middle America

The Story: “Jamie” is about a boy who thinks he can do miracles, but he can’t.  “Spring” is about a boy who thinks he is being poisoned out of childhood.

The Science: Not Applicable.  Well, maybe child psychology stuff, but, meh.

The Reaction: Both stories start with the thought that there could be sci-fi or fantasy in the stories, but bring you to the eventual conclusion that these are just kids who don’t understand the world yet.  Or who refuse to see it with adult eyes. Which is fine.  But not what this project is about.

The Cover: The subtitle of the book reads “22 Hauntings and Celebrations.”  The cover art has clearly decided to focus on the hauntings side.  Not one of those creepy faces is wearing a party hat.

Next Up: “Frost and Fire” by Ray Bradbury.