Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes

I’m always amazed at writers that can set a sinister tone to their work with only the first sentence. And, you know, the reader knows that they’re in for a bit of a freight. Ray Bradbury was really one of the pioneers of science fiction. Plus, he always incorporates scary, creepy twists to his plots. It’s been such a long time since I’ve first wanted to read one of his books. I think he’s been on my list since 2009 to 2010.

“The stuff of nightmare is their plain bread. They butter it with pain.”

The book essentially follows two young, teen boys, Jim Nightshade and William Holloway. A traveling carnival arrives in their town in October. Oooh! And, the darkness of the plot begins. Mr. Dark and his carnival cronies start to breed havoc in town.

“Evil has only the power we give it.”

“By the prickling of my thumb, something wicked this way comes,” say the witches of Macbeth. The theme of magic is really strong throughout the book. A deep sense of surrealism invites readers to be overcome by their darkest fears and desires. It almost echoes the maturity state the boys are transitioning out of from childishness to growing maturity. There seems to be a phase where taking control of once base impulses becomes essential. This is certainly an interesting cautionary tale for young children. And, to be honest, I’d really dig a good Hollywood adaption of this books. It’s long overdue, I think.

“His flesh took paleness from his bones.”

Work Cited

Bradbury, Ray. Something Wicked This Way Comes. New York: Simon & Schuster, 24 October 2017.

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