Fahrenheit 451Paperback - 2013 | Simon & Schuster trade paperback ed., 60th anniversary ed.
Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden.
Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television "family." But then he meets an eccentric young neighbor, Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn't live in fear and to a present where one sees the world through the ideas in books instead of the mindless chatter of television.
When Mildred attempts suicide and Clarisse suddenly disappears, Montag begins to question everything he has ever known. He starts hiding books in his home, and when his pilfering is discovered, the fireman has to run for his life.
From Library Staff
Ray Bradbury's internationally acclaimed novel "Fahrenheit 451" is a masterwork of twentieth-century literature set in a bleak, dystopian future. Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than p... Read More »
For her research into the Los Angeles Public Library fire and how books burn, Susan Orlean felt she needed to set fire to a book but could not bring herself to do it - until her husband suggested this would be the perfect book for the task, which she undertakes in Ch. 5.
SLPL_Trends Jan 04, 2019
Betty Ballantine and her husband Ian helped invent the modern paperback through their Bantam and Ballantine books. Paperbacks in America were not popular until the Ballantines improved the quality of the product and offered better titles. The pair were instrumental in establishing the market for ... Read More »
"Fahrenheit 451 has to head this list of "ironic books banned." Why? Fahrenheit 451 is an entire novel about the future and the banning (and burning) of books. It was banned, ironically, because one of the books that eventually gets banned and burned is the Bible. Drawn your own co... Read More »
From the critics
QuotesAdd a Quote
“Stuff your eyes with wonder, he said, live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds...''
Montag hesitated. "What—was it always like this? The firehouse, our work? I mean, well, once upon a time. . . ."
"Once upon a time!" Beatty said. "What kind of talk is that?"
Fool, thought Montag to himself, you'll give it away. At the last fire, a book of fairy tales, he'd glanced at a single line. "I mean," he said, "in the old days..."
"'My grandfather ran off the V-2 rocket film a dozen times and then hoped that someday our cities would open up more and let the green and the land and the wilderness in more, to remind people that were alotted a little space on earth and that we survive in that wilderness that can take back what it has given, as easily as blowing its breath on us or sending the sea to tell us we are not so big. When we forget hoe close the wilderness is in the night, my grandpa said, someday it will come in and get us, for we will have forgotten how terrible ad real it can be.'"
"'I hate a Roman named Status Quo!' he said to me.' stuff your eyes with wonder,' he said,'live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no garantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there was, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in atree all day every day, sleeping it's life away. To hell with that,' he said,'shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.'"
"Do your own bit of saving, and if you drown, at least die knowing you were headed for shore."
"Most of us can't rush around, talk to everyone, know all the cities of the world, we haven't time, money or that many friends. The things you're looking for, Montag, are in the world, but the only way the average chap will ever see ninety-nine percent of them is in a book."
"You're afraid of making mistakes. Don't be. Mistakes can be profited by. Man, when I was younger I shoved my ignorance in people's faces. They beat me with sticks. By the time I was forty my blunt instrument had been honed to a fine cutting point for me. If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you'll never learn."
"There was a silly damn bird called a Phoenix back before Christ, every few hundred years he built a pyre and burned himself up. He must have been first cousin to Man. But every time he burnt himself up he sprang out of the ashes, he got himself born all over again. And it looks like we're doing the same thing, over and over, but we've got one damn thing the Phoenix never had. We know the damn silly thing we just did. We know all the damn silly things we've done for a thousand years and as long as we know that and always have it around where we can see it, some day we'll stop making the goddam funeral pyres and jumping in the middle of them. We pick up a few more people that remember, every generation."
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Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage.
In the future, books are illegal. With the profession of 'fireman', Montag is quite happy burning down homes and occasionally their owners as he and his team destroy books. But when his neighbour, a slender blonde of fifteen, plants the idea of a better society - one where books are legal - in his mind, his curiosity leads to his qeustioning their lifestyle.
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