Welcome to an unique edition of First Line Friday! At least, there is a twist on it here on Reviews From the Stacks. Goodreads has dubbed this week as “Sci-fi and Fantasy Week,” and while I am likely to agree with the suggestion that it is a bit excessive to have a week dedicated to science fiction and fantasy (or any genre for that matter), I am also not going to miss an opportunity to have a small literary celebration.
I don’t have a ton of sci-fi books on my physical shelves, and I don’t think I have anything that counts as true fantasy. However, there are a few space-opera-slash-teenagers-and-aliens type of books. Of course, there are also two by one of the first masters of science fiction, Ray Bradbury. I’m going back to one of these old sci-fi favorites today and sharing the first line of Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles:
“One minute it was Ohio winter, with doors closed, windows locked, the panes with frost, icicles fringing every roof, children skiing on slopes, housewives lumbering like great black bears in their furs along icy streets.
And then a long wave of warmth crossed the small town.”
The opening is so eerie yet enchanting to me! I am certainly biased towards Bradbury’s short stories, but I cannot help being drawn in again every time I read that line. If you have never read a Bradbury work, or if you’ve only read Fahrenheit 451, I highly recommend starting The Martian Chronicles.
About the Book
Title: The Martian Chronicles
Author: Ray Bradbury
Blurb: The strange and wonderful tale of man’s experiences on Mars, filled with intense images and astonishing visions.
The Martian Chronicles tells the story of humanity’s repeated attempts to colonize the red planet. The first men were few. Most succumbed to a disease they called the Great Loneliness when they saw their home planet dwindle to the size of a fist. They felt they had never been born. Those few that survived found no welcome on Mars. The shape-changing Martians thought they were native lunatics and duly locked them up.
But more rockets arrived from Earth, and more, piercing the hallucinations projected by the Martians. People brought their old prejudices with them – and their desires and fantasies, tainted dreams. These were soon inhabited by the strange native beings, with their caged flowers and birds of flame.
Talking about The Martian Chronicles today reminds me how many of Bradbury’s works I still have not read, although I want to! Perhaps I should make room in next year’s reading goals to include more classic science fiction. Or maybe I’ll have time at the end of this year, once the goals that I have already set are met.
What is your favorite science fiction or fantasy book? Let’s talk about it in the comments! Also, don’t forget to check out the other FLF posts over at Hoarding Books (link below)!
First Line Friday is a weekly linkup hosted at Hoarding Books. To participate, share the first line of a book of your choice, add the link on the host’s page, and check out what others are reading and sharing! The group of bloggers who participate in this linkup regularly are some of the kindest and most outgoing people I have met. I love the interaction that I know is sure to come even when I don’t participate every week!
Until the next chapter,
P.S. I’m currently looking for recommendations for my autumn reading! Specifically, I would love to hear recommendations on novels in verse, magical realism (light on the magical), and cozy stories set in lesser-represented US states. If you would share any recommendations you have based on any of these topics, I would be ever so grateful! –J