Fahrenheit 451


            Fahrenheit 451 is a novel written by Ray Bradbury about a futuristic society. The citizens in this society have no books, drive fast beetles out in the country hitting animals, sitting in their parlors watching TV, and listen to radios. This society has no books because the Special Interest Groups felt that the books were offending and need to be burned. The main character in Fahrenheit 451 is Guy Montag, who is married to a wife who tries to commit suicide, and is a fireman who doesn’t put out fires.

            The story soon starts off with Montag meeting a seventeen-year-old girl named Clarisse who isn’t like everyone else. She walks with Montag and he thinks she is just an annoying little girl. Day after Day she walks with him on his way to work and talks about nature, people, and what her uncle always says. Montag slowly starts to wonder why not how. After a while Clarisse stops showing up before work and disappears. The just fuels Montag’s curiosity even more. While on call one day his squad had to go to this old lady’s house and burn her books. She pleaded for them to stop but they just kept pouring oil on everything. While sorting through the books Montag is curious about what is inside so he take one and hides it in his shirt while the others aren’t looking. As they were getting ready to run out of the house and then set it on fire the lady refuses to be escorted out and holds up a match. As the squad escapes from the house the lady drops the math and dies with her books. Montag is then confused and horrified that a woman would kill herself rather than to live without books. Montag then goes home and rests. The next day however he doesn’t show up for work and his boss, Beatty, comes to talk to him about the history of firemen and lecture about how they came to be. He also says that sometimes a fireman would become curious and would want to read one of the books, he says that the fireman is allowed to keep the book for twenty four hours after which he must incinerate it. Once Beatty leaves Montag takes his wife to the air conditioning vent and pulls out stacks of books. Montag’s wife is horrified and even grabs one and tries to run to the incinerator. Montag stops her and once she calms down he tells her that she must help him learn about the meaning of everything. Montag also remembers an old man he met at a park who must like books too named Faber. Faber says that he knows nothing about any books which h gave Montag a pretty good idea the Faber was hiding something. Faber finally agrees to help him go against the government and make copies f books. While Montag frantically reads his wife talks to her friends about coming over later. Once Montag’s wife’s friends come over he reads to them a couple pieces of poetry from a book. The friends leave and run off to file a complaint. Montag then goes to the fire station to hand over one of his books to Beatty who then goes off on another lecture. There is then a call so they all get into the fire truck when Montag soon realizes that the call is on his house. He sees his wife run off in a van with a suitcase and realizes he has been betrayed. While at the house, Montag takes the flamethrower and burns his boss and squad. He then runs to the yard to get a stack of hidden books and heads to all of the firefighter’s houses. He hides books in each house to make the firefighters look bad and calls in from a pay phone. He then runs to Faber’s house while being chased by hounds and helicopters. Faber gives him new clothes and Montag then jumps in a river floating downstream to get rid of the hounds. Montag then comes across a group of book lovers who memorize books and spread the knowledge. While he is with them a bombing raid destroys his town. Him and the book lovers then go and look for survivors.

Habits of Mind:


I can connect to Fahrenheit 451 in many ways. Sometimes I believe books are too confusing and just make me angry. Sometimes however, I want to read as much as possible and let my mind wander and wonder. I see both of the sides at home, the hating books and loving books in my family because my mom loves books and my dad just doesn’t really care about them kind of like my brother. I however like them if I find them interesting.


Ray Bradbury makes this futuristic novel seem like it really could happen because his ideas aren’t very farfetched or include anything impossible. He also thought everything through all the way down to fireproofing houses so that the firemen would only need to start them and not put them out. He also took into account that some people would be against the government kind of like 1984…


I see both Montag’s and Beatty’s sides to books. Beatty says that books are confusing and make people think too much about philosophy and other similar topics that makes their mind water confusing them making them lonely and depressed. Montag however, feels that books allow your mind wonder and that you can learn a lot more from books like how to think for yourself and wonder why not how.


I believe this book is very significant because it addresses one of the big conflicts between students, the ones who love to read and the ones who would rather burn the books. Books can help people learn and they don’t always make people sad sometimes the make people laugh and smile.


I think the most important thing that happened in this book would be when he went to the old lady’s house to burn books and that she killed herself. If the woman hadn’t killed herself Montag would have showed up to work the next day and if the woman hadn’t had the books at al he wouldn’t have stolen a book. Anther event that happened in this book was when Montag met Clarisse. If he hadn’t met her he wouldn’t have started to think for himself and question everything around him. If Montag didn’t take those books there wouldn’t have been a story and he would have just perished in the bombing raid.


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