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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
58
4.6 out of 5 stars
The Illustrated Man (Flamingo Modern Classics)
Format: Paperback|Change
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on 4 July 2017
I first read these extraordinary tales as a teenager nearly 50 years ago. They are as fresh and challenging today as they were then!
Brilliant
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on 21 October 2017
love rays books. a must read
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on 23 June 2017
I've been a fan since early twenties(77)
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on 27 September 2013
For a book written when it was, how much has come true? Such a wonderful collection of tales from a master story teller.
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on 24 November 2016
I have been reading Ray Bradbury since I read in my School days "The Silver Locusts" ...I then read 'The illustrated Man' soon after seeing the film... I downloaded this edition because I wanted to read it all over again, however, not all the Illustrated man stories are here in this edition, a few have been left out, and to my dismay, one of my favourites 'Rocket Man'...this is why I only gave it 3 stars, because this edition has been chopped !...if however you download the Audio Book read by Scott Breck, all the stories are there, including Rocket Man, I know, because I have now downloaded it.
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on 4 March 2017
really good book.
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on 6 August 2010
This is another collection of short stories connected by a tenuous theme - they're the stories told by someone's tattoos - but this time it's intended to be a bunch of shorts, and most of them are good, a few are outstanding, only a couple are bad, and none are awful. And three are utterly brilliant. Originally published a couple of zears before Fahrenheit 451, the connections are obvious in two of the stories - two of the best stories at that.

The theme of the man of the title's tattoos provides a nice lead-in to the first story, and the epilogue provides a satisfactory end, but in all honesty those two sections could have been dropped entirely. I'd not be at all surprised to find that the individual stories have also been published independently of them.

The stories are a mixture of science fiction and fantasy, almost all of them character-based, most concentrating on human weaknesses and relationships. The successful ones, however, do have at least some action in them too: it's only the two stinkers in which nothing happens except blathering.

Note that the UK and US editions differ: I read the UK edition, which omits four stories from the US version and adds two others. As it happens, I feel that the two added are amongst the best in the book.
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on 31 July 2013
This is a review of the British (Flamingo Modern Classic) edition of The Illustrated Man, which contains a different set of stories from the American edition.

Ray Bradbury's work lies at the 'softer', more fantastic end of the science-fiction spectrum. In these short stories the rockets, robots and (not so) alien environments are not the centre of attention. They serve as props in dramas that focus on human hopes, fears and failings. Of the recurring themes the most notable is the amoral and capricious nature of children.

This collection isn't as consistent as Bradbury's best work (The Martian Chronicles, for example). Some of the stories lack subtlety and proceed in a pedestrian fashion towards a conclusion that is obvious from the first few lines. However, there are flashes of brilliance: idiosyncratic ideas and images that linger in the mind, such as astronauts tumbling through space and the rains of Venus. The most rewarding story is the last, The Playground, in which Bradbury provides an evocative, compelling narrative with a haunting conclusion.
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on 11 June 2010
This is a fantastic collection of science-fiction/horror stories from the boundless imagination of Ray Bradbury.

The books begins with a chance meeting between two wanderers, one of whom is extensively tattooed all over his body (or 'Illustrated' as Bradbury beautifully puts it) the tattooed stranger explains that he is searching for the woman who gave him his tattoos to kill her. He states the tattoos are cursed and come to life every night. The enthralled stranger then watches as the ink comes to life each one telling a different story.

The premise of stories within a story is brilliant and using tattoos as a medium to tell them is both extraordinary but also wonderfully creative.

Although the short stories are all science fiction based there is a good variety of stories. The reason I also termed them 'horror' is that there is a good deal of death and violence in the stories although not excessively so. The stories really get under your skin and will stay with you forever (ironically not unlike the illustrations themselves)

Well worth a read and (in my opinion) Bradbury's best book to date.
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As the line in the film went which showed three of the stories from the anthology. And it is this line which best exemplifies the difference between common all garden short stories and the true work of art. Anyone with a needle and ink can make a tattoo that makes a statement from a mermaid or heart that says mother. But it takes an artist to create a skin illustration that goes beyond a statement and tells a story an art that Bradbury demonstrates in each tale. Not only does he tell a story but he also leaves you at the end of each one with questions gnawing away in your consciousness. Questions such as "What if that could really happen?" or "What if it was me?"

Like all great works art after your first encounter, it leaves an indelible impression on your soul very much like a tattoo, or should that be skin illustration?
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