reviewed by Polina Verkhovodova, Beaverton City Library
In the futuristic society of Fahrenheit 451, books are banned and thus destroyed when discovered. Suburbanites of this society remember vaguely – if they do at all – their past lives and established history. Guy Montag is such a citizen. He is a fireman, and, suffice to say, very fond his job. He enjoys midnight runs and finds joy in watching pages consumed by flames. Montag never questioned anything until he meets a seventeen-year-old girl who prompts him to examine his life. He later meets a professor who tells him of a dreamland where people can think. Montag then decides that in order to stay human, he must rebel against the ways of the society.
Fahrenheit 451 is not only a story in which books are outlawed and destroyed, but it is one of the power of intellect, the importance of knowledge, and the physical ability to read books. This classic dystopian novel stands at the side of George Orwell’s 1984, Lois Lowry’s The Giver, and Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.
Bradbury’s use of figurative language and striking imagery helps develop the symbolism and themes found within this novel. Fahrenheit 451 is considered to be one of Bradbury’s best novels. Ray Bradbury’s ideas leave as much of an impact on readers today as it did to readers sixty years ago.