Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Tuesday Intros and Teaser Tuesday - 'Fahrenheit 451' by Ray Bradbury

Fahrenheit 451It is officially December and my housemates have started to decorate the house for Christmas. Being Dutch I'm still in the process of getting excited for Sinterklaas on the 5th of December! But Christmas cookies will be baked tomorrow so I guess it's inevitable, Christmas is coming and the year is almost over! Before we get depressed at the quick passage of time, let's get on with the memes! Tuesday Intros are hosted by Diane over at Bibliophile by the Sea and Teaser Tuesday is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. This week I'm using Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, which I have started reading for my 100 Classics List.

The terrifyingly prophetic novel of a post-literate future.
Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books.
The classic dystopian novel of a post-literate future, Fahrenheit 451 stands alongside Orwell’s 1984 and Huxley’s Brave New World as a prophetic account of Western civilization’s enslavement by the media, drugs and conformity.
Bradbury’s powerful and poetic prose combines with uncanny insight into the potential of technology to create a novel which, decades on from first publication, still has the power to dazzle and shock.
I don't think I need to explain why I want to read this one!

IT was a special pleasure to see things eaten, to see things blackened and changed. With the brass nozzle in his fists, with this great python spitting its venomous kerosene upon the world, the blood pounded in his head, and his hands were the hands of some amazing conductor playing all the symphonies of blazing and burning to bring down the tatters and charcoal ruins of history. With his symbolic helmet numbered 451 on his stolid head, and his eyes all orange flame with the thought ofwhat came next, he flicked the igniter and the house jumped up in a gorging fire that burned the evening sky red and yellow and black. He strode in a swarm of fireflies. He wanted above all, like the old joke, to shove a marshmallow on a stick in the furnace, while the flapping pigeon-winged books died on the porch and lawn of the house. While the books went up in sparkling whirls and blew away on a wind turned dark with burning.' p.1
This is an amazing beginning! The first line immediately sucks you in because it is a very unnatural concept. Then there's also the ambiguity of the sentence. Is the narrator enjoying burning or being burnt?

'Then moaning, she ran forward, seized a book and ran toward the kitchen incinerator.He caught her, shrieking. He held her and she tried to fight away from him, scratching.' p.31
This is a great moment and very tense. Clearly books are something illegal and the owning of it is a danger to both people involved here. Although her response seems very natural in those circumstances I simply can't imagine burning a book.

So, what is the book you're using? And what do you think about Fahrenheit 451?


  1. This a book that I haven't read and feel I should... So yes, keep reading!

  2. I haven't read Fahrenheit 451 yet, but it's on my humongous TBR list. I'm happy you're enjoying it so far!
    My teaser this week is from Grendel.

  3. Seems odd to me too to burn books. Good teaser!

  4. It's been years since I read this ... hope you enjoy. My teaser.

  5. Wow, what a teaser. That is a book that has been on my TBR list forever, but I have never read it. Consider my interest piqued. :)

  6. that was very intense! The teaser is really intriguing. I love it. Thanks for sharing, Juli!

  7. The idea of no form of literature is scary. Great teaser and intro.
    Her's my teaser http://www.lovebitessilkties.co.uk/2014/12/teasertuesday-bookoftheweek-spanked-by.html

  8. I've not read this one. I wonder why not? It's fascinating.
    Here's my TT - http://fuonlyknew.com/2014/12/02/teaser-tuesdays-90-come-along-with-me/

  9. Seems a lot of us have not read this one. I have not either, although it is my son's favorite book. I really must read it. Thanks for the reminder of one of the classics that I still need to get to.

  10. Is this your first time reading the book? It is probably time for a reread for me! Enjoy.

  11. A powerful story, and the excerpts really illustrate this. Thanks for sharing...and enjoy your Christmas cookies.

    Here's mine: “THE SECRETS OF MIDWIVES”

  12. What an excellent and compelling opening! As writers, we're told not to open our stories with "it was," but those words work beautifully in this instance.I know my husband has this book on his shelves, but I've never read it. Now I'm wondering why not.
    My Tuesday post features TRAIL MIX.

  13. Haven't read this one since high school - enjoy!

  14. Classic choice! An oldie but goodie!

  15. Intellectually I can understand the importance of a book like this, and there are so many reasons why I think people should read this book, but for me, reading it in high school, I just couldn't get into it. I've never been quite sure why, but perhaps it was simply that I also couldn't wrap my brain around burning books. Great choice though!

    Here are mine: Burn for Me and The Young Elites!

  16. That is a very unique opening paragraph. I've never read anything by Ray Bradbury. I know, shame on me. Have a nice week. kelley—the road goes ever ever on