Thursday, October 30, 2008

Bits and/or Pieces

Halloween moves ever closer. It holds little personal interest for me in real life, but I appreciate a good Halloween depiction in literature or film. So, too, does this Guardian book blog, one of the few general Bradbury appreciations I have seen in the British press.

Out of sync with the season, I today received my copy of Summer Morning, Summer Night. This is the missing link between Dandelion Wine and its sequel Farewell Summer. Literally. Bradbury conceived of one large work, but back in the '50s decided to publish only half (DW). Just recently the second half (FS) was published, and as a follow up SM, SN is now available from Subterranean Press - but order soon, as it sounds like stocks will sell out.

Just over a half of SM, SN is material previously published in short story form. The remainder is material previously unpublished, mostly in the form of short fragments, episodes that somehow didn't fit into the text of either of the other two books. There are some longer stories, however, and I have enjoyed the tiny amount of the book I have read so far. However, it feels like a book that will only make sense to a completist, someone already familiar with both DW and FS.

Last weekend I saw the Catherine Wheels/National Theatre of Scotland production of Something Wicked This Way Comes. A splendid production of one of Bradbury's most awkward stage plays. If you get the chance to see this production, I highly recommend it. However, abandon your preconceptions of what SWTWC should be like, and be prepared for a fun, energetic and inventive piece of theatre. I hope to post a full review soon.

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