The Golden Apples of the Sun

The Golden Apples of the Sun is an anthology of 22 short stories by American writer Ray Bradbury. It was published by Doubleday & Company in 1953.

The Golden Apples of the Sun
Golden apples of the sun.jpg
Dust jacket of the first edition
AuthorRay Bradbury
IllustratorJoe Mugnaini
CountryUnited States
GenreScience fiction, fantasy
PublisherDoubleday & Company
Publication date
Media typePrint (hardback & paperback)
(Heinemann, 1991)
LC ClassPS3503.R167

The book's title is also the title of the final story in the collection. The words "the golden apples of the sun" are from the last line of the final stanza of W. B. Yeats' poem "The Song of Wandering Aengus" (1899):[1]

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.[2]

Bradbury prefaces his book with the last three lines of this poem. When asked what attracted him to the line "the golden apples of the sun", he said, "[My wife] Maggie introduced me to Romantic poetry when we were dating, and I loved it. I love that line in the poem, and it was a metaphor for my story, about taking a cup full of fire from the sun."[1]

The Golden Apples of the Sun was Bradbury's third published collection of short stories.[3] The first, Dark Carnival, was published by Arkham House in 1947; the second, The Illustrated Man, was published by Doubleday & Company in 1951.


The collection's title story was first published in the November 1953 issue of Planet Stories, a US pulp science fiction magazine.

In 1990, Bantam Books collected most of the stories from R Is for Rocket (1962) and The Golden Apples of the Sun into a semi-omnibus edition titled Classic Stories 1. In 1997, Avon Books printed a new edition of the omnibus, titling it The Golden Apples of the Sun and Other Stories. Harper Perennial titled their 2005 edition as A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories.

The semi-omnibus editions omit three of the stories that appear in The Golden Apples of the Sun: "The Pedestrian" (1951), "Invisible Boy" (1945), and "Hail and Farewell" (1953).

Story First
The Golden Apples
of the Sun
Classic Stories 1
"The Fog Horn" 1952 1 1
"The Pedestrian" 1951 2 Dropped
"The April Witch" 1951 3 2
"The Wilderness" 1952 4 3
"The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl" 1948 5 4
"Invisible Boy" 1945 6 Dropped
"The Flying Machine" 1953 7 5
"The Murderer" 1953 8 6
"The Golden Kite, the Silver Wind" 1953 9 7
"I See You Never" 1947 10 8
"Embroidery" 1951 11 9
"The Big Black and White Game" 1945 12 10
"A Sound of Thunder" 1952 13 23
"The Great Wide World Over There" 1953 14 11
"Powerhouse" 1948 15 12
"En la Noche" 1952 16 13
"Sun and Shadow" 1953 17 14
"The Meadow" 1947 18 15
"The Garbage Collector" 1953 19 16
"The Great Fire" 1949 20 17
"Hail and Farewell" 1953 21 Dropped
"The Golden Apples of the Sun" 1953 22 18
"R Is for Rocket" 1943 19
"The End of the Beginning" 1956 20
"The Rocket" 1950 21
"The Rocket Man" 1953 22
"The Long Rain" 1950 24
"The Exiles" 1950 25
"Here There Be Tygers" 1951 26
"The Strawberry Window" 1954 27
"The Dragon" 1955 28
"Frost and Fire" 1947 29
"Uncle Einar" 1947 30
"The Time Machine" 1957 31
"The Sound of Summer Running" 1957 32


Writing in The New York Times, Charles Poore reported that Bradbury "writes in a style that seems to have been nourished on the poets and fabulists of the Irish Literary Renaissance", and said he was "wonderfully adept at getting to the heart of his story without talking all day long about it and around it."[4]

Anthony Boucher and J. Francis McComas of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction found Golden Apples to be a "most uncertain reading experience… material of a curiously mixed quality; writing that is often simply and perceptively moving [and] just as often sadly lacking any particular strength or color".[5]

Imagination reviewer Mark Reinsberg called Bradbury "a gifted writer", but complained that he had "a tendency to overestimate the power of style to nourish anemic themes."[6]

Groff Conklin of Galaxy Science Fiction praised the collection, saying it included "some of the best imaginative stories [Bradbury] or anyone else has ever written. One cannot even begin to describe their delights."[7]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Weller, Sam, ed. (2014). Ray Bradbury: The Last Interview and Other Conversations. Melville House Publishing. p. 76. ISBN 978-1-61219-422-6. OCLC 883302084. Retrieved 2017-06-06 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ Yeats, W. B. (1903). "The Song of Wandering Aengus". The Wind Among the Reeds (4th ed.). London: Elkin Mathews. Retrieved 2015-12-22 – via Project Gutenberg.
  3. ^ Gronert Ellerhoff, Steve (2016). Post-Jungian Psychology and the Short Stories of Ray Bradbury and Kurt Vonnegut. Routledge. p. 172. ISBN 978-1-31-738491-5. Retrieved 2017-06-06 – via Google Books.
  4. ^ Poore, Charles (March 19, 1953). "Books of the Times". The New York Times.
  5. ^ Boucher, Anthony; McComas, J. Francis (June 1953). "Recommended Reading". The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. p. 70.
  6. ^ Reinsberg, Mark (June 1953). "Imagination Science Fiction Library". Imagination. p. 145.
  7. ^ Conklin, Groff (August 1953). "Galaxy's 5 Star Shelf". Galaxy Science Fiction. Galaxy Publishing Corporation. p. 116.


External linksEdit