In spite of the title, this series of short stories has very little to do with Paris. Only one story actually takes place outside of the US. My only other experience with Bradbury is Fahrenheit 451, so this collection is vastly different in mood, style and substance. The stories are quiet, pensive and introspective. Sadly, by the end of the book, I didn’t really see a clear connection between the stories. There was an overarching theme of loneliness and frailties and vulnerabilities.
I liked some stories more than others, but overall I wasn’t very impressed. It’s a quick read though. My favorite stories were:
- The Visit (about a woman meeting the man who received her son’s heart in a transplant operation. A sad, poignant story about loss.)
- The Murder (a bet is placed that a man will murder a man for no reason within a month…an exquisite look into the psychology and mind of a seemingly normal human being and how little it takes to become paranoid and dangerous.)
- We’ll Always Have Paris (a midnight stroll though the streets of Paris.)
- Ma Perkins Comes to Stay (a radio personality takes on a real life persona and torments a man trying to get a hold of his sanity.)
Bradbury has a huge bibliography to his name, so it’s really easy to pick at random any of his works and be impressed and intrigued in reading more. If you don’t want to invest your time in a novel, then I recommend this collection of short stories as a decent introduction to the famed and much beloved author.