Monday, January 9, 2012

100 Books Every Woman Should Read - Fahrenheit 451***

"Wonder why we're recommending so many books? Read this and feel the urgency, the necessity of literacy and education. Also it is just a great read!"

This book is incredibly well-written. I can not even adequately describe the way Ray Bradbury strings together words into a beautiful masterpiece of a literary work. It absolutely must be read, if only to appreciate the verbal jewel which Bradbury has constructed. Indeed, Bradbury's writing is so superb that I was not satisfied just to read the book but also eagerly devoured the Afterword and Coda. As a sidenote, I highly recommend reading the Coda at the end of the book.

In addition, this book's message is spot-on. It forces one to see the importance of the written word and the dangers of technology. In some ways this book reminded me of the Disney/Pixar movie Wall-E, except that it was better and made more sense. It is a particularly fascinating read at the present time, as our society steadily transitions to a technological society, a "culture of the image," if you will, with increasing dependence on electronic devices.

I especially appreciated how Montag was totally lost until Clarisse's simple love came into his life. All it took was for someone to pay attention to him, to look "straight at me as if I counted." Our simple acts of love can do so much, they can prove to others that they do matter, that they are worth something, and they can change hearts.

Oh and I love that the book ends with a quote from the Bible!

This book is an absolute must-read!

Some quotes:

  • "Well, after all, this is the age of the disposable tissue. Blow your nose on a person, wad them, flush them away, reach for another, blow, wad, flush. Everyone using everyone else's coattails."

  • "I like to watch people. Sometimes I ride the subway all day and look at them and listen to them. I just want to figure out who they are and what they want and where they're going."

  • "We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?"

  • "The home environment can undo a lot you try to do at school. That's why we've lowered the kindergarten age year after year until now we're almost snatching them from the cradle."

  • "But Clarisse's favorite subject wasn't herself. It was everyone else, and me. She was the first person in a good many years I've really liked. She was the first person I can remember who looked straight at me as if I counted."

  • "I often wonder if God recognizes His own Son the way we've dressed Him up, or is it dressed Him down? He's a regular peppermint stick now, all sugar-crystal and saccharine when He isn't making veiled references to certain commercial products that every worshipper absolutely needs."

  • "The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies."

  • "In the silence our stage whisper might carry."

  • "Mistakes can be profited by."

  • "remember that the Captain belongs to the most dangerous enemy to truth and freedom, the solid unmoving cattle of the majority. Oh the terrible tyranny of the majority."

  • "you can't make people listen. They have to come 'round in their own time, wondering what happened and why the world blew up under them. It can't last."

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