Imagine having the power to see briefly into the future, or being able to kill someone through a magic candle. Imagine someone playing war like a childhood game and winning, or going to Mars and yet seeing Earth and people from one’s memory.
These characters are from a few of Ray Bradbury’s previously uncollected early tales that are gathered in this compilation. In these stories, we get a clear glimpse of the beginnings of this SF master. Mars, even then, is already hostile and unwelcoming to colonizing Earthmen, and yet, at the same time, it is also portrayed as just another planet, with creatures ready to strike back and defend their home.
Bradbury’s work, whether science fiction set in space or in Mars, or horror stories and suspense, are always a treat to read. They show psychological depth and sophistication, holding up a mirror to us from which we can see our foibles and strengths, and all the characteristics that make us human.