“The thing that makes me happy is that I know that on Mars, two hundred years from now, my books are going to be read. They’ll be up on dead Mars with no atmosphere. And late at night, with a flashlight, some little boy is going to peek under the covers and read The Martian Chronicles on Mars.”Ray Bradbury
By Dave Dentel
It’s quite possible science fiction icon Ray Bradbury never got over being a kid.
Even as an adult, he stuffed his Beverly Hills office with toy spaceships, ray guns and dinosaurs. He entertained his grandchildren with magic tricks.
One of my favorite stories by him recounts how a junk peddler—too poor for space travel—crafts an ersatz rocket to delight his kids with a simulated trip to the moon.
Bradbury’s novel Something Wicked This Way Comes features a pair of 13-year-old boys who expose and finally defeat a soul-stealing carnival impresario.
My very Bradburian tale, the final entry in the volume This Do in Remembrance, similarly centers on a pair of friends who discover a dark secret about their own bucolic valley. Their golden world of mischief and make believe, farm chores and summer frolics, turns out to be something very different.
The kid in you may want to sneak under the covers to read this one.