From the Dust Returned by Ray Bradbury
A Novel

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Synopsis

Ray Bradbury, America's most beloved storyteller, has spent a lifetime carrying readers to exhilarating and dangerous places, from dark street comers in unfamiliar cities and towns to the edge of the universe. Now, in an extraordinary flight of the imagination a half-century in the making, he takes us to a most wondrous destination: into the heart of an Eternal Family.

They have lived for centuries in a house of legend and mystery in upper Illinois -- and they are not like other midwesterners. Rarely encountered in daylight hours, their children are curious and wild; their old ones have survived since before the Sphinx first sank its paws deep in Egyptian sands. And some sleep in beds with lids.

Now the house is being readied in anticipation of the gala homecoming that will gather together the farflung branches of this odd and remarkable family. In the past-midnight stillness can be detected the soft fluttering of Uncle Einars wings. From her realm of sleep, Cecy, the fairest and most special daughter, can feel the approach of many a welcome being -- shapeshifter, telepath, somnambulist, vampire -- as she flies high in the consciousness of bird and bat.

But in the midst of eager anticipation, a sense of doom pervades. For the world is changing. And death, no stranger, will always shadow this most singular family: Father, arisen from the Earth; Mother, who never sleeps but dreams; A Thousand Times Great Grandmére; Grandfather, who keeps the wildness of youth between his ears.

And the boy who, more than anyone, carries the burden of time on his shoulders: Timothy, the sad and different foundling son who must share it all, remember, and tell...and who, alone out of all of them, must one day age and wither and die.

By turns lyrical, wistful, poignant, and chilling, From the Dust Returned is the long-awaited new novel by the peerless Ray Bradbury -- a book that will surely be numbered among his most enduring masterworks.

 

About Ray Bradbury

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In a career spanning more than seventy years, Ray Bradbury, who died on June 5, 2011 at the age of 91, inspired generations of readers to dream, think, and create. A prolific author of hundreds of short stories and close to fifty books, as well as numerous poems, essays, operas, plays, teleplays, and screenplays, Bradbury was one of the most celebrated writers of our time. His groundbreaking works include Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, and Something Wicked This Way Comes. He wrote the screen play for John Huston's classic film adaptation of Moby Dick, and was nominated for an Academy Award. He adapted sixty-five of his stories for television's The Ray Bradbury Theater, and won an Emmy for his teleplay of The Halloween Tree. He was the recipient of the 2000 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, the 2004 National Medal of Arts, and the 2007 Pulitzer Prize Special Citation, among many honors.Throughout his life, Bradbury liked to recount the story of meeting a carnival magician, Mr. Electrico, in 1932. At the end of his performance Electrico reached out to the twelve-year-old Bradbury, touched the boy with his sword, and commanded, "Live forever!" Bradbury later said, "I decided that was the greatest idea I had ever heard. I started writing every day. I never stopped."
 
Published October 1, 2001 by Easton Press. 224 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Horror, Children's Books. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for From the Dust Returned

Kirkus Reviews

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(Whenever he falls to earth, he makes a sound “like a huge telephone book dropped from the sky.”) They all eventually succumb to the indifference of a world disinclined to believe they exist (an interesting parallel here to Neil Gaiman’s current American Gods, p.

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Publishers Weekly

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If there's a fountain of youth, Bradbury has found it. In the 1940s, at the start of his extraordinary writing career, Bradbury produced a series of popular fantasy short stories about the Elli

Aug 27 2001 | Read Full Review of From the Dust Returned: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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Once, Cecy got a young woman to treat an unwanted but worthy suitor more politely than she would have otherwise: "Peering down from the secret attic of this lovely head, Cecy yanked a hidden copper ventriloquist's wire and the pretty mouth popped wide: 'Thank you.' " Einar, a winged man, acts as...

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AV Club

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Did the world really need a novel-length expansion of Ray Bradbury's classic 1946 short story "Homecoming," any more than it needed the novel-length expansion of Isaac Asimov's novella "The Ugly Little Boy"?

Apr 19 2002 | Read Full Review of From the Dust Returned: A Novel

SF Site

The overarching plot is fairly simple: a "family" -- or, rather, a group of societal misfits like loping werewolves, living gargoyles, ghosts who starve in a world without belief, the dead who must be unburied to live life backwards, the voice of a creepy creaky Theban door hinge, vampires and o...

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Lit Reactor

Hollywood is going through a Ray Bradbury phase, which is likely to be about 90 times better than its migraine-inducing-3D phase and 400 times better than its erotic-vampire phase.

May 11 2012 | Read Full Review of From the Dust Returned: A Novel

A Patchwork of Books

I)10 a.m.: Reading10:30: Powerpoint presentation on breaking into publishing + Q&A 11 - 12: mingle/book signing Where: Grassroots Books RenoWhen: Saturday, January 19th Who: You and your friends (enemies welcome, too : )See you there!

Dec 21 2012 | Read Full Review of From the Dust Returned: A Novel

The Zone

From Nef - the dust witch mummy, to out-of-body night flier Cecy, and adopted young orphan Timothy, the Elliotts are Bradbury's quintessential October people.

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