Archive for the ‘Bradbury, Ray’ Category

The Green Town Trilogy (Dandelion Wine, Summer Morning, Summer Night, and Farewell Summer) by Ray Bradbury

October 12, 2014


Ray Bradbury’s Green Town Trilogy is comprised of three books: Dandelion Wine, Summer Morning, Summer Night, and Farewell Summer. 

Dandelion Wine


Dandelion Wine is a 1957 novel by Ray Bradbury, taking place in the summer of 1928 in the fictional town of Green Town, Illinois, based upon Bradbury’s childhood home of Waukegan, Illinois. The novel developed from the short story ‘Dandelion Wine’ which appeared in the June 1953 issue of Gourmet magazine.

The title refers to a wine made with dandelion petals and other ingredients, commonly citrus fruit. In the story, dandelion wine, as made by the protagonist’s grandfather, serves as a metaphor for packing all of the joys of summer into a single bottle.

The main character of the story is Douglas Spaulding, a twelve-year-old boy loosely patterned after Bradbury. Most of the book is focused on the routines of small-town America, and the simple joys of yesterday.

In the winter of 1955–56, after a consultation with his Doubleday editor, Bradbury deferred publication of a novel based on Green Town, the pseudonym for his hometown. Instead, he extracted seventeen stories and, with three other Green Town tales, published the 1957 book as Dandelion Wine.

Summer Morning, Summer Night


The most significant of the remaining unpublished stories, scenes and fragments were published as two novels. One was under the originally intended name for the novel, Summer Morning, Summer Night, in 2007.

In Summer Morning, Summer Night, Bradbury returns to this signature locale with a generous new collection of twenty-seven stories and vignettes, seventeen of which have never been published before. Together, they illuminate some of Green Town’s previously hidden corners, and reaffirm Bradbury’s position as the undisputed master of a unique fictional universe. The core of Summer Morning, Summer Night was Bradbury’s witnessing of the American small-town and life in the American heartland.

Farewell Summer


In 2006, Bradbury published the original novel that remained after the extractions, and re-titled it Farewell Summer.

Farewell Summer is a novel by Ray Bradbury, published on October 17, 2006. It was his last novel released in his lifetime. It is a sequel to his 1957 novel Dandelion Wine, and is set during an Indian summer in October 1929. The story concerns a mock war between the young and the old in Green Town, Illinois, and the sexual awakening of Doug Spaulding as he turns fourteen.

The first chapter, also titled Farewell Summer, appeared in The Stories of Ray Bradbury in 1980. Publishers Weekly called the novel a ‘poignant, wise but slight ‘extension’ of the indefatigable Bradbury’s semi-autobiographical Dandelion Wine’ and concluded, ‘Bradbury’s mature but fresh return to his beloved early writing conveys a depth of feeling.’ Kirkus Reviews found it ‘a thin work, heavily reliant on dialogue, but one that serves as an intriguing coda to one of Bradbury’s classics.’ Booklist said, ‘A touching meditation on memories, aging, and the endless cycle of birth and death, and a fitting capstone, perhaps, to a brilliant career.’

In the afterword to Farewell Summer, Bradbury contends that the novel was actually intended to follow what became the Dandelion Wine story arc as a complete book tentatively titled Summer Morning, Summer Night. ‘When I delivered it to my publishers they said, ‘My God, this is much too long. Why don’t we publish the first 90,000 words as a novel and keep the second part for some future year when it is ready to be published.’

Dandelion Wine, Summer Morning, Summer Night and Farewell Summer form The Green Town Trilogy, three novels inspired by Ray Bradbury’s childhood in Waukegan, Illinois.



Ray Bradbury’s books are available at:

In R J Dent’s Library – Ray Bradbury

September 23, 2013

R J Dent takes a look at the works of the master of fantasy and science fiction – Ray Bradbury.

In R J Dent’s Library – Ray Bradbury

Text (c) R J Dent (2013)

Film (c) R J Dent (2013)

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In Praise of Ray Bradbury

June 14, 2008

Ray Bradbury

As a writer, Ray Bradbury showed me how it was done. As a young boy, I loved his short stories – The Pedestrian, Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed, The Fog Horn, The Lake, and The Sound of Thunder in particular. As a teenager I loved his collections that masqueraded as novels, such as The Illustrated Man and The Martian Chronicles. As a man I love his novels: Fahrenheit 451, Dandelion Wine, Something Wicked This Way Comes, Death is a Lonely Business, A Graveyard For Lunatics, and most recently, Farewell Summer.

However, I admire Ray Bradbury for more than just his writing talent. I admire him for having the courage to live as a writer, to spend his time writing, writing, writing – and not really bothering about anything else. I also admire him because he abandoned formal education and educated himself in the library – and then became a very successful writer.

As a writer he was prolific – novels, short stories, essays, poems, plays, film scripts and teleplays. He has written many of each. As a person, he was a living legend.

Ray Bradbury was born in 1920, He died today (5/6/12) aged 91. Until today, he was still writing and still enjoying his life. He said in a recent interview that it was his love of writing that kept him young.

Here is a bibliography:


(1950) The Martian Chronicles

(1953) Fahrenheit 451

(1957) Dandelion Wine

(1962) Something Wicked This Way Comes

(1972) The Halloween Tree

(1985) Death Is a Lonely Business

(1990) A Graveyard for Lunatics

(1992) Green Shadows, White Whale

(2001) From the Dust Returned

(2004) Let’s All Kill Constance

(2006) Farewell Summer

Short Story Collections:

(1947) Dark Carnival

(1951) The Illustrated Man

(1953) The Golden Apples of the Sun

(1955) The October Country

(1959) A Medicine for Melancholy

(1959) The Day It Rained Forever

(1962) The Small Assassin

(1964) The Machineries of Joy

(1969) I Sing The Body Electric

(1976) Long After Midnight

(1980) One Timeless Spring

(1983) Dinosaur Tales

(1984) A Memory of Murder

(1988) The Toynbee Convector

(1996) Quicker Than The Eye

(1997) Driving Blind

(2002) One More for the Road

(2004) The Cat’s Pyjamas

(2007) Now and Forever: Somewhere a Band is Playing & Leviathan ’99

(2007) Summer Morning, Summer Night

(2009) We’ll Always Have Paris

Through each new book, I grew up with Ray Bradbury. He has a place in my heart and in my mind that no other writer has. He is the most important person to me in terms of literary influence; possibly more important than J.G. Ballard, Angela Carter, William S. Burroughs, Anna Kavan, or even Ayn Rand, who was so important to me that I dedicated my first novel, Myth, to her. Here is a short film of the Ray Bradbury books that I have in my library:

There is a wonderful piece of film in which Ray Bradbury talks to university students about writing. It is witty and informative – and at times very profound. It is worth watching for Bradbury’s insights into writing. Here it is: