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Master of sci-fi dies

Los Angeles, June 6: Ray Bradbury, a master of science fiction whose lyrical evocations of the future reflected both the optimism and the anxieties of his own post-war America, died yesterday in Los Angeles. He was 91.

His death was confirmed by his agent Michael Congdon.

By many estimations, Bradbury was the writer most responsible for bringing modern science fiction into the literary mainstream. His name would appear near the top of any list of major science-fiction writers of the 20th century, beside those of Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Robert A. Heinlein and Polish author Stanislaw Lem.

In Bradbury’s lifetime, more than eight million copies of his books were sold in 36 languages. They included the short-story collections The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man and The Golden Apples of the Sun, and the novels Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

Although none won a Pulitzer Prize, Bradbury received a Pulitzer citation in 2007 “for his distinguished, prolific and deeply influential career as an unmatched author of science fiction and fantasy.”

The Martian Chronicles remains Bradbury’s best-known work. It became a staple of high school and college English courses. Bradbury disdained formal education. He went so far as to attribute his success as a writer to his never having gone to college. He referred to himself as an “idea writer,” by which he meant something quite different from erudite or scholarly.

He is survived by his daughters, Susan Nixon, Ramona Ostergen, Bettina Karapetian, and Alexandra Bradbury, and eight grandchildren.

 
 
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