The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Quiet, subtle, psychological, The Martian Chronicles are a series of short stories set on Mars and Earth that don't highlight technology or even the actual conditions on Mars (this was written more than half a century ago) but it focuses 100% on us.
Bradbury has always been the most poetical and subtle of the old SF authors. Where he eschews science, he offers up a gigantic mirror instead.
This re-read followed a similar path for me. I was somewhat meh about the first few stories, became a bit enamored of the next few, absolutely loved the light shining on the hardcore horribleness of humanity in the next few, and then chortled at the softly playing death dirge for the rest of the stories.
Make no mistake. These aren't a bunch of celebratory stories. These are dark.
They just HAPPEN to read very quietly, using a light touch that shows curiosity, care, and wonder. In reality, however, they are a funeral for dreams.
There's a reason why Bradbury is still considered one of the best short story writers of an age.
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