Is 'All Summer in a Day' about the rainfall during the schoolday?
I recall reading that some time in my early teens, and feeling a deep sense of sorrow for the characters.
Inkling: That's the one.
Saddest story: "The Better Part of Wisdom"
Saddest character: Spender in Martian Chronicles
Other than that I'd say melancholy is a vital ingredient in just about ANY Bradbury story
Actually, the saddest story was the fake version of "The Last Night of the World" which appeared in the movie of "The Illustrated Man." How they got that plot out of that story I've never fathomed--though it is Bradburyesque in that Ray has "never believed in the end of the world" and this might serve as a warning to those who do.
Rats! I thought I'd successfully blocked the memory of that horrible film! Thanks a lot, Dandelion!
One of the times I met Mr. Bradbury, he, shall we say, expressed his disappointment with that film. He liked the Truffaut "Fahrenheit 451", though...
The saddest Bradbury story that i can think of is "There will come soft rains". Other than Bradbury, the last book that made me cry was "Animal Farm". I mean I was literally leaking as I finished it. The Fascistic pigs strutting around as the sheep bleated,"Four legs good, two legs BETTER!" absolutely sickened me. Actually, I can only think of one other book that moved me to tears, "A Prayer for Owen Meaney". I read that just after graduation from high school, so I don't know if my adolescent tears amount to much.
the saddest story i can think of is obviously my favorite: "The Lake" but another sad one not from Bradbury is "The Scarlet Ibis" I cry just thinking about that one....Ahhhh Doodle....
"Leftovers" somehow deflated me for a time.
The saddest Bradbury story? Why, the one I haven't yet read!
"Rocket Man" is a story that has stuck with me since I first read it (gulp)like twenty six years ago. I'm currently attempting to adapt it into a play. The inevitability of the ending raises the story to almost tragic proportions.
Hmmm...Spender is undoubtedly a great character. The character from that same book that I thought was the saddest was Ylla.
"The Rocket man" . . . what a good call! I also thought "Heavy Set" had a lot of sadness to it, and really portrayed loneliness (and some of the emotions that seem to go along with it) well.
There IS an undertone of sadness in "Heavy Set", but it is almost completely obscured by a suffocating sense of quiet menace.
Gothic: I've got to agree. I think the sense of menace comes out of the despair of loneliness and a sense of isolation. This ability to capture emotion without being phony or maudlin is one of Bradbury's strengths as a writer. I have tried my hand at fiction and can only create cardboard cutouts. I appear to be unable to define character in a person without getting pedantic, phony and boring. My results are just too strained.
[This message has been edited by Mr. Dark (edited 07-24-2004).]
Stylistically speaking Bradbury is unique. One of the first things that struck me when I first read him in my early teens was the simplicity and straightforwardness of his sentences. The man has something to say and he proceeds to say it clearly, sans verbosity or purple prose. I can appreciate a Lovecraft, but Bradbury is the greater poet.
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