Back in May, I fell in love with an audio book about two young boys whose lives change forever when a circus with an enticing and terrifying secret comes to their town. It is easily one of my favorite creepy stories, one which I’m delighted to share my thoughts on today.
Ray Bradbury is an amazing storyteller. His imagery and his ability to evoke mood are haunting and wonderful. His way with words is a treat in itself. Something Wicked This Way Comes is the story of Evil, in all its subtle creep, seeking the destruction of the most fundamental part of our humanity, that which gives our lives meaning–our relationships–with a candy apple smile and tantalizing false promises to satisfy our lusts and desires while preying on human misery. With it’s beautiful nuggets of wisdom about love, life, family, friendship, time, and the battle of good vs. evil, this story is as powerful and allegorical as it is imaginative.
This is a great story!
This is a great author.
Here are some of my favorite quotes from this book:
“The train skimmed on softly, slithering, black pennants fluttering, black confetti lost on its own sick-sweet candy wind, down the hill, with the boys pursuing, the air so cold they ate ice cream with each breath.”
“Oh, what strange wonderful clocks women are. They nest in Time. They make the flesh that holds fast and binds eternity. They live inside the gift, know power, accept, and need not mention it. Why speak of time when you are Time, and shape the universal moments, as they pass, into warmth and action? How men envy and often hate these warm clocks, these wives, who know they will live forever.”
“Why love the woman who is your wife? Her nose breathes in the air of a world that I know; therefore I love that nose. Her ears hear music I might sing half the night through; therefore I love her ears. Her eyes delight in seasons of the land; and so I love those eyes. Her tongue knows quince, peach, chokeberry, mint and lime; I love to hear it speaking. Because her flesh knows heat, cold, affliction, I know fire, snow, and pain. Shared and once again shared experience.”
*Love is rooted in empathy.
“And men do love sin, Will, oh how they love it, never doubt, in all shapes, sizes, colors, and smells…. Oh, it would be lovely if you could just be fine, act fine… But it’s hard, right? With the last piece of lemon cake waiting in the icebox, middle of the night, not yours, but you lie awake in a hot sweat for it, eh?… Add up all the rivers never swum in, cakes never eaten, and by the time you get my age, Will, it’s a lot missed out on… So, minute by minute, hour by hour, a lifetime, it never ends, never stops, you got the choice this second, now this next, and the next after that, be good, be bad, that’s what the clock ticks, that’s what it says in the ticks… But then, through plain dumb cowardice, I guess, maybe you hold off from too much, wait, play it safe…. Too late, I found you can’t wait to become perfect, you got to go out and fall down and get up with everybody else.”
*A complicated one, but I love how it depicts sin as springing from the simple dread that we might be missing out on something, so we cheat others to get what we want now and, in the process, cheat ourselves. On the other end of the spectrum is a sense of lost time because we didn’t try worthwhile things, avoiding the risk of failure.
“[Y]ou take a man half-bad and a woman half-bad and put their two good halves together and you got one human all good to share between.”
“He felt the vague pain in his chest. If I run, he thought, what will happen? Is Death important? No. Everything that happens before Death is what counts. And we’ve done fine tonight. Even Death can’t spoil it.”
The Audible edition narrator, Christian Rummel, was absolutely fabulous. He did a great job voicing the various characters, and he brought out the mood of the book exceptionally well.
You can check out the Audible edition of Something Wicked This Way Comes here: http://www.audible.com/pd/Classics/Something-Wicked-This-Way-Comes-Audiobook/B00KQBMIBW
Or the Kindle and print editions on Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Something-Wicked-This-Comes-Greentown-ebook/dp/B00C2C637I.