Monday, 1 November 2010

Reading Update: Something Wicked This Way Comes

Suitably for Halloween week I've recently finished ( re- ) reading Ray Bradbury's spooky classic of small-town American Gothic, Something Wicked This Way Comes. That's my battered copy of the book above, which is about as old as me :-)

I've posted a short review on the SFX Book Club forum:

( I was going for a Bradbury-esque vibe, but I think it just came out pretentious..... )


Default Re: SFX BOOK CLUB 57: Something Wicked This Way Comes


Beneath the tattooed skin of this book, with its nightmare circus and gruesome sideshow freaks, the meat of the story deals with the joy and pain of growing up and growing old. Bradbury's prose is a hymn to late summer days, blood brothers, skinned knees and the approach of Halloween. Two teenage boys and an old-before-his-time father have to face their fears and desires as Cooger and Dark's carnival pulls into town in the dead of night, promising renewed youth for some, a fast-track to adulthood for others. And from the sideshows and tents, out come the freaks: the Dwarf, the Illustrated Man, the Skeleton and the terrifying Dust Witch. Bradbury's characters are put to the test by this bizarre crew of misfits, and their souls are the prize. With its decaying, autumnal feel Something Wicked... is a unique fantasy of life, death and all the moments inbetween.

12 comments:

Lazarus Lupin said...

I don't know. I like it. It certainly paints a verbal picture. As for Bradbury, I perfer the October Country for halloween shivers.

Lazarus Lupin
art and review
http://strangespanner.blogspot.com/

cerebus660 said...

Thanks, Mr. L! I've never read The October Country - I'll have to put that right!

Steve Does Comics said...

I recall reading it as a kid but can't remember a word of it. I do however remember every word of "Chicken Licken". I like to think this shows the sort of intellect I possess.

Sadly, the SFX forum seems to have disappeared. I fear the beauty of your review may have overtaxed its servers to the point of destruction.

cerebus660 said...

It's a harsh world when beauty and servers can't co-exist :-(

DEZMOND said...

that surely looks like a wicked book cover!

cerebus660 said...

Yeah, it's a shame it's so creased though...
:-(

Matthew K. said...

Hey Simon nice review. I recall there was a lightly regarded movie based on this in the '80s but I never saw it. Have a good weekend!

cerebus660 said...

Thanks, Matthew! I've never seen that version of the story either, but there are trailers and a couple of scenes available on YouTube - it looks pretty dark for a Disney film!

joe bloke said...

movie was pants, if I recall rightly, but I liked the book, and, to be honest, I'm not the world's greatest Bradbury fan.

cerebus660 said...

But, Joe - he speaks so highly of you :-)

Saranga said...

I really like Something wicked..
The Illustrated Man is a afavourite character of mine (and one that's been used quite a lot in old Green Lantern comics).
Bradbury has a wonderful way with words.

cerebus660 said...

He certainly does! It was interesting for me to re-read Something Wicked... because at my age I can more readily relate to Will's father than I could have the first time around. ( Old git! )

Have you read Fahrenheit 451? That's another Bradbury classic I'll have to re-read.

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