Study Guide

Dandelion Wine Time

By Ray Bradbury


Bradbury pulls kind of a fast one over on readers in <em>Dandelion Wine</em>. If you've read his other work, and someone tells you this one is about time travel, you may very well go into it expecting aliens and spaceships. But he's not interested in traveling to the future in <em>Dandelion Wine</em>; this is a book about his childhood memories, so the time travel here stays strictly to the past. Human bodies (er, brains) are the machines, and characters' stories of other times are the lands to which those machines transport us.

Questions About Time

  1. Douglas refers to time traveling as "far-traveling" and says, "It sure sounds lonely." Do you agree? Why or why not? Does it actually seem lonely in the book? Provide evidence from the text.
  2. Mr. Bentley tells Mrs. Bentley that we're always trapped in the present. Do you feel that your memories and dreams keep you from being trapped, or do you agree with him? 
  3. Lena Auffmann thinks it's better to be unaware of the places you'll never visit than to visit them virtually. What's your opinion? 
  4. Doug thinks that the way to slow time is to watch and do nothing. Does this work? Take a close look at the moments when he tries to do this.

Chew on This

A time machine that can only visit the past is just as good as one that can visit the future.

Hanging onto mementos of the past can only keep you dissatisfied and longing in the present; it's better to just move on.

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