This is one of those books that everyone reads in school but I somehow missed (same with To Kill a Mockingbird which I only read 2 months ago and loved btw). Where were my English teachers and what were they teaching?? I can't answer that, don't know. But I'm very glad that I finally read this book. Here's the summary:
The story takes place in the near future and follows a man named Guy Montag who is a fireman. He is not the type of fireman that you and I know today (yea firemen calendars! - TOTALLY j/k). In the book fireman do not put out fires, they start them. Their job is to protect humanity from books, and basically all the sorrow/aliveness that they could make you feel. If you are found guilty of possessing books the firemen come and they torch your entire house, perhaps killing you in the process. It takes place in a future America where they have tried to eliminate emotional pain by making sure that you don't have a clue on what life is really about. People don't read books, they never sit and talk to each other, they never spend time alone or think independently. Instead they drive excessively fast, watch enormous amounts of t.v. in their homes that have wall-sized television sets, and enjoy hurting each other. They have forgotten the meaning of life and only seek entertainment (which if you just read my blog post on my personal blog about t.v. I hope you're not thinking 'ummm...is this a book about Kirsten?).
It is not until Guy meets a young girl named Clarisse 'who opens his eyes to the emptiness of his life with her innocently penetrating questions and her unusual love of people and nature' (thank you sparknotes for saying what I couldn't). Guy slowly begins to rebel by taking books from his raids and reading them. He wants to find others like him but consorting with people who actually read books is a terrible risk. But Guy cannot stand his life as it is anymore, meaningless. So he sets out to find the one old man who he didn't turn in to see if he can make him feel again and to also see if they can somehow change their deadened society. He visits the old man, a retired professor of English - back when they had universities, who tells him that 'the value of books lies in the detailed awareness of life that they contain. He says that Montag needs not only read books but also have the leisure to read them and the freedom to act upon their ideas' (thank you again sparknotes).
For someone who loves to read, not being able to or not being able to even try to find meaning in life, would be completely devastating. What a cold, cold world that would be. It reminds me alot of what Satan would want, a world full of drones who do not think for themselves. This book makes you think and I enjoy books like that. Really it is a pretty short, quick read so I would recommend it to anyone.