Two more days, two more books.
I'm rediscovering all the great short novels in my house. Who knew the shelves held so many? I might never have remembered them without this urgent need for short books.
I reread Fahrenheit 451 last night for the first time since college, when Ray Bradbury came to speak and I soaked up every word. I still want to "graduate from the library" the way he claims to have done, but I fear I fall short.
I am astonished to think that he wrote F. 451 in 1952, never having seen ear buds and ipods and large-screen TVs; and a whole generation of increasingly obese preteens (30%) who do little besides play Nintendo and Wii; and hoards of teens who sit in rooms full of other kids and text as if no one else exists. And nobody reads. And picture books are dying a slow death. And literary fiction is dying a speedy one. And book stores have to sell movies and music and coffee to stay alive. And anti-racist books like To Kill a Mockingbird are banned because they use the word "nigger".
Call Bradbury a prophet? Or just perceptive and imaginative?
I also learned that my guess was right, that Ray Bradbury wrote episodes of "Twilight Zone." They were so reminiscent of Martian Chronicles. I figured.
On to my next short book...
Imagination doesn't just mean making things up. It means thinking things through, solving [problems] or hoping to do so, and being just distant enough to be able to laugh at things that are normally painful. [Some people] would call this escapism, but they would be be entirely wrong. I would call fantasy the most serious, and the most useful branch of writing there is.
--Diana Wynne Jones
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