Also Finished Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

I re-read this book because it was discussed last night by the “Shared Pages” bookclub (held at “Bookmama’s” bookstore in Irvington); it is a short book and appears on many “top novels” lists.  As doubtless many already know it is set in a future where books are illegal and fireman do not put out fires (houses in this future are fireproofed), but instead start fires to burn books (451 degrees is the temperature that paper is said to combust, but I think that’s 451 celsius, and I read “Fahrenheit 451” just ‘sounded better’ to Bradbury).


Guy Montag, the protagonist, is a fireman who begins to question things after meeting a new neighbor, a young girl (Clarisse) who has somehow thus far avoided being ‘numbed’ by the dystopian society.  There are many ‘futuristic’ things in the story that were correctly anticipated by Bradbury, including ear bud speakers (they are ‘shells’ in the story), and big screen tvs, and assassination drones (like the unmanned many aircraft being used in Afghanistan & elsewhere now) are not all that different from the terrifying Mechanical Dogs in the story.

I last read this book in 2001.  It was also made into a movie in the 60s.  A remake of the movie was investigated by Mel Gibson, but plans eventually fell through, partly because – with the advent of computers – it was thought it would not be as powerful in today’s society.


  1. Dana said,

    February 21, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    This is a book that I’ve always meant to read but still haven’t gotten around to. Very interesting about the title!


  2. stentorpub said,

    February 21, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Thanks for your comment, Dana. You should give F451 a try. As I mentioned in my post, it’s a very short novel (my copy was 141 pages) and wouldn’t take too long. At least one member of the book club was a little leery about reading a “Science Fiction” book, but the rest of us assured them that it wasn’t “Ray-guns and Aliens” science fiction…

    Thanks for visiting my fledgling blog!



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