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The Playground: A Short Story

The Playground: A Short Story

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The Playground: A Short Story

3.5/5 (2 Bewertungen)
30 Seiten
39 Minuten
21. Jan. 2002


From the iconic science fiction author of Fahrenheit 451, a chilling dystopian short story that became a classic episode of TV’s Ray Bradbury Theater.
The Playground, first published in the hardcover edition of Bradbury’s legendary work Fahrenheit 451, tells the story of Charles Underhill, a widower who must protect his young son, Jim, from the horrors of the playground. Passing the playground on their daily walk brings Charles back the anguish of his own childhood—a nightmare of vulnerability and suffering. He will do anything to spare his sensitive son from the same torment.
Charles’s sister, Carol, who has moved in to help raise the young boy, feels differently. The playground, she believes, is preparation for life, and Jim will be more equipped to deal with the rigor and obligation of adult existence by facing it.
Paralyzed by his own fear and his sister’s invocation of reason, Charles learns of a way that Jim can be spared the playground. But it will come at a great cost . . . perhaps more than he can pay.
21. Jan. 2002

Über den Autor

Ray Bradbury (22 August 1920 – 5 June 2012) published some 500 short stories, novels, plays and poems since his first story appeared in Weird Tales when he was twenty years old. Among his many famous works are 'Fahrenheit 451,' 'The Illustrated Man,' and 'The Martian Chronicles.'

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The Playground - Ray Bradbury

The Playground

Ray Bradbury


The Playground

Copyright © 1953 by Ray Bradbury

Cover art and eForeword to the electronic edition copyright © 2000 by RosettaBooks, LLC

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

Electronic editions published 2000, 2011 by RosettaBooks LLC, New York.

ISBN e-Pub edition: 9780795317071



The Playground


The Playground: Ray Bradbury’s terrifying short story, one of the great stories of childhood-as-nightmare, appeared originally in Esquire in October 1953; it first appeared in book form in the Ballantine first issue of his famous novel, Fahrenheit 451. Charles Underhill, seeking to protect his young son from the agonies of schoolyard bullying in the playground makes a deal with the playground’s mysterious manager but only at the end discovers the true nature of the pact.

Ray Bradbury (1920-) is perhaps the most important and admired living science fiction writer and one of the few writers emerging from science fiction to true literary and critical acceptance. He was unable to sell his early science fiction stories to the leading market of the 1940’s, John W. Campbell’s Astounding. Bradbury had to publish his short stories in the second-line magazines like Planet Stories and Thrilling Wonder. After the War, however, Bradbury’s fantastic and surrealistic fiction began to find a steady market in mainstream magazines like Mademoiselle, Collier’s and Harper’s Bazaar and he became the first science fiction writer to place work in Martha Foley’s Best American Short Stories. The novel, Fahrenheit 451, later the basis for a notable film of François Truffaut, secured his reputation. In 2000, Bradbury

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  • (3/5)
    A bit creepy, but an interesting look at how far a parent will go to protect their child from playground bullies. Jonathan Davis was great as the narrator.
  • (4/5)
    This very short story was apparently published originally in a magazine and along with the first edition of Fahrenheit 451, so this short Kindle edition is the first time it has appeared in a self-standing edition.  This is quite a chilling piece on adults' perceptions of the dangers children experience during their hours of play and the lengths to which parents can go to protect them from these real or perceived dangers. 4/5