Ray Bradbury poses for a portrait at his home in Los Angeles. 2008 photo by Dan Tuffs/Getty Images.
Ray Bradbury, the author of the classic books “Fahrenheit 451” and “The Martian Chronicles” died Tuesday night at the age of 91. The highly influential author had continued working into his 90s, writing everyday at his home in Los Angeles.
A highly prolific and influential author, Bradbury wrote novels, short stories, plays, screenplays and poems. His essay “Take Me Home,” about his discovery of science fiction as a young boy, appeared just last week in The New Yorker. In it, he wrote:
“When I was seven or eight years old, I began to read the science-fiction magazines that were brought by guests into my grandparents’ boarding house, in Waukegan, Illinois. Those were the years when Hugo Gernsback was publishing Amazing Stories, with vivid, appallingly imaginative cover paintings that fed my hungry imagination. Soon after, the creative beast in me grew when Buck Rogers appeared, in 1928, and I think I went a trifle mad that autumn. It’s the only way to describe the intensity with which I devoured the stories. You rarely have such fevers later in life that fill your entire day with emotion.”
Bradbury’s first hit came in 1950 with the publication of “The Martian Chronicles,” a collection of science fiction short stories that took on Cold War fears. Three years later, his classic distopian novel, “Farenheit 451,” would be published. More than a half-a-century later, his influence can still be seen in modern science fiction movies and writing.
Tune in to Wednesday’s NewsHour, where we’ll have more on Bradbury’s life and work.