During the course of four years in high school, students are required to read a set of books that has been thought out by the school board. These books are meant to broaden our minds with classic literature. One of the books on the reading list is Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. The book was published in 1953 and proved to be a world wide success. The novel was received with many great reviews and a huge following. At first, I chose to read this novel to get a head start because it was mandatory to read it for senior year. Now, I feel grateful that I have read such a wonderful novel at such a young age and I got to really appreciate the story.The novel tells of a man, Guy Montag, who works as a fireman in a futuristic society where censorship has been greatly implemented on the people. Firemen are required to burn books rather than putting out fires. The people in Montag's world have no individuality or a mind of their own. They prefer immediate gratification and are never challenged mentally. The story begins with Montag meeting Clarisse McClellan. McClellan is a seventeen year old girl who challenges Montag on his beliefs. Montag realizes that the people around him are superficial and begins to feel bad for them because they will never know how it feels like to be independent and think for themselves. The novel tells how Montag becomes liberated from his society and starts to rebel by reading books and thinking for himself. It is Montag's quest to bring life back to the people through the use of books. This novel was a great read and holds true to why it is considered a classic. It details how censorship can threaten our individuality and our mind to think for ourselves. I really do believe that this novel will broaden our minds and not only will we be learning that we should never conform but rather go against it and think and stand up for ourselves.
********** Published: June 5, 2009 - Volume 8 - Issue 7