Sunday, February 16, 2014

Farewell, Summer

This was Bradbury's "farewell" novel. A bunch of boys growing up in Illinois don't want to grow up. They are waging "war" on the old people. They eventually come to the conclusion that "time" embodied by the town clock is the enemy.

The boys hang out in the ravine near their houses and participate in their "war", forsaking some junk food and eventually stealing chess pieces. One boy's grandpa eventually talks some sense into them, and they return the pieces.

The boys are gradually growing up and their "war" days are coming to an end. They decide to visit a haunted house. Most of the boys are scared. However, one boy stays and meets a girl there. She plants a kiss on him. After that, there seems to him to be an explosion of girls everywhere in the city. He later goes to talk to his main "enemy", an old bachelor. They have a nice conversation, and start to explore some of the big questions of life.

The boys also go to a display of the origins of life. They freak out when they see one display looks like a dead fetus. It then dawns on them that the previous displays may also be "human" and not jellyfish.

This was originally part of Bradbury's Dandelion Wine. However, it was cut off and published much later in life. It shows the relationship between the old and the young. Bradbury even mentions that he would love to sit back and listen to everything that the the seniors would have to say about life. The story presents a tale of "growing up." Everyone is growing. The fetus display showed initial growth. The boys are gradually maturing. Even the old man must come to terms with his life and decide to make friends. Life is about growth and change.

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