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[Beautiful], semi-[autobiographical] [novel] written by [Ray Bradbury] and published in [1957]. This [evocative] and [nostalgic] (but almost [plotless]) [book] details the [Summer] of [1928] in a [small town] in [Illinois], focusing on a [boy] named [Douglas Spaulding].

Bradbury's [writing] is extremely [rich] and very [sensory]-oriented: the [reader] will get the [feeling] that [he or she] knows, from the writing alone, exactly what [fox grapes] smell like, what new [sneakers] feel like, what [homemade lemonade] tastes like on a [hot day], what an old [baseball glove] smells like, what it's like to be [afraid of the dark] for [no good reason], what a [caterpillar] feels like when it [crawl]s on your arm, what it's like to get up [early] in the [morning] just to watch the world [wake up]...

It's also, sometimes, a scary and sad book. Bradbury's thoughts, even at their most optimistic, never stray too far from the [darkness], and even Douglas Spaulding's perfect summer is marred by [fear] and [panic]s, by failed magics, by [loss] and [death]. Douglas begins the novel by realizing, for the first time, that he's [alive], and the downside of that is learning about [mortality].

More than likely, [no one] ever had a summer this [wonderful] as a [child], but it's the [summer] that we all should have had. It's most [fun] to [read] this [book] in [the dead of winter] -- You can almost feel the [snow] [melt]ing around you as you read...

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