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The Martian Chronicles (Voyager Classics) [Paperback]

Ray Bradbury
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
Price: 10.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

2 July 2010 Voyager Classics

The strange and wonderful tale of man’s experiences on Mars, filled with intense images and astonishing visions. Now part of the Voyager Classics collection.

The Martian Chronicles tells the story of humanity’s repeated attempts to colonize the red planet. The first men were few. Most succumbed to a disease they called the Great Loneliness when they saw their home planet dwindle to the size of a fist. They felt they had never been born. Those few that survived found no welcome on Mars. The shape-changing Martians thought they were native lunatics and duly locked them up.

But more rockets arrived from Earth, and more, piercing the hallucinations projected by the Martians. People brought their old prejudices with them – and their desires and fantasies, tainted dreams. These were soon inhabited by the strange native beings, with their caged flowers and birds of flame.


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The Martian Chronicles (Voyager Classics) + The Illustrated Man (Flamingo Modern Classics) + Something Wicked This Way Comes
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager; New Ed edition (2 July 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007119623
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007119622
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 12.4 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 851,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

One of the greatest writers of science fiction and fantasy, Ray Bradbury was born in Waukegan, Illinois in 1920.

He published some 500 short stories, novels, plays and poems since his first story appeared in Weird Tales when he was just twenty years old. Among his many famous works are Fahrenheit 451, The Illustrated Man and The Martian Chronicles.

Product Description

Review

‘The bitter irony of The Martian Chronicles is both stark and shocking’ Guardian

‘The laureate of science fiction’ Manchester Evening News

‘The king of science fiction’ Mail on Sunday

‘Bradbury has a remarkable range of intensity and vision’ Sunday Times

About the Author

Ray Bradbury has published some 500 short stories, novels, plays and poems since his first story appeared in Weird Tales when he was twenty years old. Among his many famous works are Fahrenheit 451 and The Illustrated Man.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As spell binding now as it ever was. 5 April 2002
Format:Paperback
The Martian Chronicles has stood up well to the test of time. The issues it deals with such as war and human angst are as relevant today as they ever were. I'd read the first 100 pages before I even realised what time it was! I'd recommend this book to anyone who enjoys not only science fiction, but also to anyone who enjoys reading a book that will make them think. It's a good read although sometimes Bradbury's observations into human nature will have you squirming uncomfortably.
Be warned, don't start to read this late at night, it'll be early morning before you put it down.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read 27 Jan 2012
By TraceyC
Format:Paperback
"It is good to renew one's wonder," said the philosopher.
"Space travel has again made children of us all."

Science Fiction isn't something that I read regularly- in fact I have probably only ever read a handful of books from this genre in my life so far.
However, this book has been on my TBR pile for some time now. This is because I remember the 1970's TV adaptation starring Rock Hudson from when I was a child. The story fascinated me a great deal and I watched it several times, but it was many years before I realised that it was an adaptation of a book.

The book was written in 1950 by American author Ray Bradbury who was responsible for other classics such as The Illustrated Man, Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

The blurb says
The Martian Chronicles tells the story of humanity's repeated attempts to colonize the red planet. The first men were few. Most succumbed to a disease called the Great Loneliness when they saw their home planet dwindle to the size of a fist. Those few who survived found no welcome on Mars. But more rockets arrived from Earth, and more. People brought their old prejudices with them-and their desires and fantasies and tainted dreams.
The book is written as a series of short stories linked together by the common theme of man's exploration to and eventual colonisation of Mars.
The stories are set in the future (from Ray Bradbury's perspective,obviously) beginning in 1999 and are told from both the point of view of the human interlopers and The Martians. They contain a mixture of sympathy for the Martians and distaste for the way that the human invaders treat the planet. Having destroyed Earth with their greed and wars, they seem destined to make the same mistakes all over again.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mars is heaven. 31 Oct 2002
By M. S. Richards VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The Martian Chronicles is a genre classic that details mankind's numerous attempts to colonise the red planet. From the outset, you are drawn into Ray Bradbury's charming yet heartbreaking allegory of the conquest of the New World. As in the historical Americas, many of Mars' native inhabitants succumb to the diseases brought by the human settlers, who themselves fall prey to their own greed and loneliness. These stories are both beautiful and tragic and I defy anyone not to be quietly moved by 'The Martian', a wonderful tale of love and loss. Bradbury has the uncanny ability to reach into your chest and play with your heart.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unlike anything else 1 Mar 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I came to this with a vague recollection of the early 80's TV version and had expectations based upon a 60 years of good reviews. The novel is unlike any other I have read, there is only a hint of a plot, no re-occurring characters and no real narrative. Basically the novel tells a series of loosely connected vignettes on the theme of 'humans go to Mars'. Told over the course of 25 years the stories move from the initial lift off of the first rockets to the arrival of the last. The descriptive passages in the book bear repeated reading and interpretation as Mr Bradbury examines race, religion, family and what it means to be human (or martian). I cannot recommend this book highly enough, just be prepared for something a little different.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Timeless compilation of Mars based short stories 26 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read this first as a second hand paperback edition still titled, the Silver Locusts. Very happy to return to it. If you have not read it before, it's worth noting that isn't a novel as such. All the stories are Mars based at different periods of the imagined contact with Mars and it's inhabitants.From first landing to colonisation, to abandonment. For me, it's an examination of the human condition seen from different perspectives and because of this, it doesn't matter that we all know life, at least as envisioned here, has never existed on Mars. It could be any planet and the stories would still stand. Bradbury's writing style feels understated but engaging. Always a pleasure to read. Recommend, even if sci-fi isn't your thing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Martian Chronicles/ The Silver Locusts 24 Nov 2012
By Clare O'Beara TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
First published as The Silver Locusts, this is a collection of short stories about a fleet of locust-like spaceships leaving Earth to settle Mars. In this world the Martian air is just about breathable but thin, and the first astronauts find abandoned city after city with water rippling through canals. They start to see ghosts and gradually we find that there are some living Martians, though perhaps they live only as memories.
But Earth is too crowded and people come to settle, bringing juke joints, small homes and beauty parlours - recreating small town America which was Bradbury's home. In one story, the war on Earth escalates and strangely most Mars settlers think they should return - not a great idea when war means nuclear war. A young man left alone decides to find a young woman if one is left, and rings every beauty parlour until he finds one. (This female would have been out securing food.) But his idea doesn't seem so great after a while and he leaves her, stumbling onto a couple of females who are actually androids built by a nutty professor, not that he knows that.
Other stories such as Billion Year Picnic at the end tell of a family exploring Mars looking for a city to settle in, knowing that now there is no going back to a devastated Earth and they have become the Martians for real.
One or two of Bradbury's stories were omitted from the collection, such as the tale of the ship full of coloured people who left homes in America for a better future, but most of them are more social comment than hard science, a warning that the future of humanity may depend on our ability to leave this planet and a query as to what we will bring and build.
Because this was never hard SF it has not dated, so read it as a fantasy or allegory and enjoy.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars An interesting read
Yes, this gets a bit confusing, but the premise is interesting. I wish that the end had been a bit more positive, but I enjoyed it never the less
Published 13 days ago by TerryB
3.0 out of 5 stars Farenheit 451 Strikes Again
Good Science Fiction
Published 29 days ago by clive adgie
5.0 out of 5 stars compelling, elegant and thought provoking
beautifully written and intriguing view of the future written from the perspective of the uncertainties of the 1960's cold war and culturally divided USA
Published 1 month ago by JJ
4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable read
Have never read Ray Bradbury before but I remembered the televised series of the Chronicle, which I enjoyed. Read more
Published 1 month ago by We Big Man
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
love this story and the dvds.
Published 1 month ago by Mrs. S. Cartlidge
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
A true classic not so much a book as a collection of short stories all related to space travels to mars much better than the tv series which was quite good
Published 2 months ago by book adict?
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading, just to make you think
I enjoyed this book very much. It made me sad to see what humans behaved like when they visited another planet; I think that Ray Bradbury unfortunately hit the nail on the head. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Ros Haywood
5.0 out of 5 stars What a dream!
Ray Bradbury is well known for having an extraordinary imagination, but here he lets it loose on the planet Mars, with its crystal towers and canals of wine.
Published 4 months ago by Mike
5.0 out of 5 stars Bradbury short stories
Always did love Bradbury, he puts poetry in prose and whisks you off to the Red Planet as if you got on a bus. Super stories, many sad, many hopeful, A delightful read. Read more
Published 7 months ago by movedbymortensen
5.0 out of 5 stars THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES (SILVER LOCUSTS)
Last read this book many years ago when it was titled "The Silver Locusts". This being a far better title than the current change based on the subsequent TV series. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Tony
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