View Poll Results: Fahrenheit 451 : Final Verdict

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  • * Waste of time. Wouldn't recommend it.

    0 0%
  • ** Didn't like it much.

    0 0%
  • *** Average.

    5 35.71%
  • **** It is a good book.

    5 35.71%
  • ***** Liked it very much. Would strongly recommend it.

    4 28.57%
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Thread: September / Dystoptian Reading: Fahrenheit 451

  1. #1
    Pièce de Résistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    September / Dystoptian Reading: Fahrenheit 451

    In September, we will be reading Fahrenheit 451.

    Please post your thoughts and questions in this thread.
    ~
    "It is not that I am mad; it is only that my head is different from yours.”
    ~


  2. #2
    Justifiably inexcusable DocHeart's Avatar
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    I read it in my third year at Stirling, which would make it 1995. I *remember* bits, though, they stuck with me. The way some people had chosen to memorize books to pass them onto future generations, so one of them was Plato, the other was Shakespeare, another was Virgil. Also, the medical men that visited the protagonist's wife and simply attached a machine to her which brought her back to life after she had died. And the dogs on the motorway, put there deliberately by the government so that drivers could have fun hitting them.

    Blimey. Don't the years go by fast.

    Regards
    Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine...

  3. #3
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    I'll be re-reading it in a week or so. Hopefully a good discussion develops.

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    Registered User Lohena's Avatar
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    New member

    Hey everyone, hope you don't mind if I join this reading group. I'll order a copy of 451 this weekend and have it shipped so I might be a little late in adding to the discussion.

    Paul

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    Of course you're welcome, Paul.

  6. #6
    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    I finished rereading it today, I'm really not too fond of Bradbury's novels.
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
    - Margaret Atwood

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    Why not?

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    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    I don't know, there's always an unmistakably pulpish quality to Bradbury's writing. If it didn't take itself so seriously, it might have a bit of a campy fun appeal to it, like a Heilein novel. However, Bradbury never quite gets that, instead you get firemen burning things as a completely serious metaphor.

    Overall, it works fairly well as a sort of light fun old sci-fi novel. It unfortunately lacks the sort of astute social criticism of Brave New World or 1984, instead it is more of a banal complaint about the base nature of the masses and an expression of Luddite fears of modern media. Much of it is also rehashed from A Brave New World with nothing new added to it except for the pulp fiction action elements.
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
    - Margaret Atwood

  9. #9
    The Poetic Warrior Dark Muse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrphanPip View Post
    I don't know, there's always an unmistakably pulpish quality to Bradbury's writing. If it didn't take itself so seriously, it might have a bit of a campy fun appeal to it, like a Heilein novel. However, Bradbury never quite gets that, instead you get firemen burning things as a completely serious metaphor.
    This is my first time reading the book, and I haven't got that far yet, but I can see where you are coming from there.

    I am enjoying reading the book all in all, and I do like the prose style of it and while on the one hand the irony of a fireman who burns things I thought was interesting, but it is also simplistic and it does seem to lack the more intricate complexity which is usually found in dystopian novels.

    As of right now I really don't have a sense of what is really going on, only bits and pieces are offered to give a glimpse of the world in which the book is set in and a reference to another time when things were different. But I presume as the story progresses it will begin to develop more of just what has issued, and how/why it came about.

    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. ~ Edgar Allan Poe

  10. #10
    In the fog Charles Darnay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrphanPip View Post
    I don't know, there's always an unmistakably pulpish quality to Bradbury's writing. If it didn't take itself so seriously, it might have a bit of a campy fun appeal to it, like a Heilein novel. However, Bradbury never quite gets that, instead you get firemen burning things as a completely serious metaphor.

    Overall, it works fairly well as a sort of light fun old sci-fi novel. It unfortunately lacks the sort of astute social criticism of Brave New World or 1984, instead it is more of a banal complaint about the base nature of the masses and an expression of Luddite fears of modern media. Much of it is also rehashed from A Brave New World with nothing new added to it except for the pulp fiction action elements.
    I get your point, OrphanPip. Personally, I try hard not to directly compare dystopian novels because it always comes down to "author x is doing what y does, but not as good." The two "major players" - BNW and 1984 - are so often compared and I find most of the time a person will prefer the one he/she read first.

    As to Fahrenheit 451 - while it is not as dense in regards to social commentary as others - I really enjoyed it and found that it has a lot to offer in such a small story, told so simply. What I particularly like is that the oppressive rulers are hardly directly present in the story, even though you know they're there. This allows for the focus to to be not "we do what we're told because someone is watching over us and controlling us" but more a reflection on critical thought.

    There are some aspects of the novel that do not hold up well - technology has far surpassed anything the novel envisions - but that being said, particularly in regards to the way books are treated, there is still some excellent points to be taken from the novel.

    And finally - it's fun. I thought it was really fun, and lacked that "constantly beat you over the head with philosophy" that overpowers so many dystopian novels.
    I wrote a poem on a leaf and it blew away...

  11. #11
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    I'm really looking forward to re-reading this. Last time I read it, I found the prose to be quite lyrical, but I also read it years ago (before reading 1984 and Brave New World) so maybe some of its originality will be lost for me.

  12. #12
    TobeFrank Paulclem's Avatar
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    I'm about half way through, and I agree with the general consensus so far. it doesn't express a lot of ideas about the society and how it got like that. In those terms it is a sinpler tale compared to someone like China Mieville who populates the novels with a great extravagant texture. I feel spoiled as a result, and I expect more from a new drawn world. I am enjoying it though.

  13. #13
    Pièce de Résistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    Waiting for my copy still...
    ~
    "It is not that I am mad; it is only that my head is different from yours.”
    ~


  14. #14
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    Can I join? I have the book but I'm just starting it; I might be reading slowly because school is beginning again.

  15. #15
    Dance Magic Dance OrphanPip's Avatar
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    It's very short, it only took me 3 hours to read.
    "If the national mental illness of the United States is megalomania, that of Canada is paranoid schizophrenia."
    - Margaret Atwood

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