The Halloween Tree pairs history lessons with suburb writing

Although many of Ray Bradbury’s works draw on memories of his childhood in the small midwestern town of Waukegan, Illinois, The Halloween Tree was written specifically for a younger audience. This holiday classic shines with all the polish and lyricism of Bradbury’s best prose. The story follows a group of trick-or-treaters who must place themselves in the hands of a ghoulish guide and learn the history of Halloween before they can save their ill friend, Pipkin, from death.

In an insightful article for the horror website, Bloody Disgusting, Brian Keiper explores Bradbury’s artistry with language and his ability to weave information into an evocative and emotional tale that excites the senses and touches the heart. For Keiper, Bradbury’s abilityto make what is essentially a history lesson so riveting, so enchanting, and so artistic is a feat that borders on miraculous.”

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Dark Worlds Quarterly celebrates Bradbury’s pulp stories in Weird Tales

Many of the stories Ray Bradbury would later collect into books or rework into novels like From the Dust Returned saw their start in the pulp magazines that served as the entry into publishing for many science fiction writers in the 1940s and 50s. G.W. Thomas, author and editor at Rage Machine Books, revisits the stories Bradbury published in Weird Tales with this article from Dark Worlds Quarterly. With twenty-five full page illustrations from artists like Fred Humiston, A. R. Tilburne, or Boris Dolgov, and links to replicas of the original editions of Weird Tales, Thomas’ piece also acts as an anthology that allows readers to enjoy early gems like “The Black Ferris,” the germ of Dark Carnival, or “The Ducker” and “The Poems,” pieces that may be new even to Bradbury fans.
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National Review looks at the world Ray Bradbury foresaw

Ray Bradbury never lost the joy in life he developed as a boy exploring the sights, sounds, and people of the small midwestern town of Waukegan, Illinois. He spent a lifetime of words convincing readers to stay in touch with the curious, open child within who knows how to discover something extraordinary in the mundane of the everyday.

Arts and culture critic Peter Tonguette believes that Ray Bradbury’s writings are just as instructive now as the day they were written and can help us deal with the challenges of modern life. Will we take the opportunity to recreate the world of Dandelion Wine by rediscovering breadmaking, reading to our children, gardening, and thinking for ourselves? Or will we, like the characters of Fahrenheit 451, allow our fascination with a parade of flickering images to supplant genuine connections to the people and places beyond our couch? Bradbury often said that he wrote about the future to prevent it. Tonguette suggests that although Bradbury did not prevent the dangers he foresaw, his stories about the pleasures of human connection continue to show us how to navigate them.

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Marlon James, winner of the Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, to be interviewed by Tananarive Due for the LA Times Book Festival

On October 26, from 6pm to 7pm PDT, the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, Stories & Ideas will feature Marlon James, whose Black Leopard Red Wolf received the inaugural Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, in conversation with Tananarive Due, award winning author, screenwriter, and prominent voice on Black horror and speculative fiction. Expect a lively discussion between two authors whose works range between the historical and the fantastic.

The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, a mainstay of the West Coast literary calendar for a quarter of a century, has been reimagined as an expanded 4 week virtual event  for readers around the world. Beginning Sunday, October 18 and continuing through November 13, the LA Times Festival, in partnership with the University of California, will offer free readings, panel discussions, and other events highlighting stories and ideas from the best authors, filmmakers, musicians, and artists of our times.
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Festival Schedule

Anthology explores Bradbury’s Elliot family stories and the supernatural

Fans of Ray Bradbury’s “Autumn People” can read more about the fantastical family of ghosts, mummies, vampires, witches–and one human boy–that the author visited and revisited for almost sixty years in a series of short stories. Those tales of the weird and wonderful, published in periodicals, included in The October Country, and eventually knit together as the 2001 novel From the Dust Returned, are the focus of Exploring the Horror of Supernatural Fiction in Ray Bradbury’s Elliott Family.

Authors and editors Miranda Corcoran and Steve Gronert Ellerhoff have selected twelve critical essays that explore the power of Bradbury’s gothic tales to capture the bittersweet adolescent experience of being different, the difficulty of balancing the desire for individuality with a longing for family and community, and the emotional and ecological costs of unchecked technology.

Hear an interview with Miranda Corcoran on Phil Nichol’s Bradbury 100 Podcast: Listen now

Discover Bradbury’s enduring contributions to the traditions of gothic and horror literature.


Celebrating Banned Books Week

Founded in 1982,  Banned Books Week promotes an author’s right to express a variety of  viewpoints and the public’s right to access them.  As part of its celebration of Banned Books Week, Simon & Schuster is highlighting Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. Bradbury’s first novel is one of the nation’s most ironically censored books since it is, itself, a warning about losing the freedom to read.

To learn about Banned Books week or discover resources for schools, libraries, and organizations, visit the Banned Books Week website or The American Library Association’s site for Banned and Challenged Books