Summary of Fahrenheit 451
The book Fahrenheit 451 is a dystopian novel. A dystopia is an imagined place where everything is terrible and everything is worse than normal. Some of the characters in this book are Guy Montag, which is the protagonist, Mildred Montag who is Guy’s wife and is also sometimes called Mille, Clarisse McCLellan who is Guy and Mildred’s neighbor who just moved into the neighborhood and is quite weird and you could say is very suspect, and Captain Beatty who is Guy’s boss.
The setting of this book are in three places. First, the book opens up in a firehouse which the main character goes to after burning down someone’s house for having books which are banned. Second, on a sidewalk which is where Guy meets Clarisse now Clarisse isn’t your everyday neighbor especially in this town she actually thinks about things and that is what she encourages Guy to do instead of just answering the question without thinking about it. Finally, at Guy’s house Guy goes home after talking to Clarisse and he starts to think about the conversation that they had just had which makes him see that he is not happy if anything he is the complete opposite of that. Everyday when he comes home it is dark and his wife is either sleep or acting like she is sleep with earbuds in her ears, but on this particular day Guy comes home to find that his wife Mildred had overdosed on sleeping pills.
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The protagonist of this story is Guy Montag. He works at a firehouse that is quite weird instead of putting out fires they start them. They go around burning houses that are caught with books in them. Montag experiences an awakening when his neighbor Clarisse is outside and it seems like she is waiting on him they end up talking and Clarisse ask Guy one simple question that makes him rethink everything he is doing with his life. She asks him if he’s happy and at first without thinking about it he says yes i’m happy but when he gets home he finds that his wife had overdoses on sleeping medicine. This makes Guy really start thinking if he was happy and the answer was no. Everyday when he gets home it is dark and his wife is in her own world. She never talks to him and she doesn’t ask how his day was, in fact she acts like she doesn’t care. He starts to wonder about his job and why books are banned he starts to wonder has it really always been this way.
Mildred which is Guy Montag’s wife is a very cold person every day she just sits at home and watches television in a parlor which is full of tv’s. Mildred seems to not care about anything or anybody. On most days when her husband comes home she has earbuds, which are called seashells in this book, but on one particular day her husband comes home and he finds that she had overdosed on sleeping pills. The next morning she is acting like nothing has happened and that it is just a regular day she goes to the kitchen and starts to eat and when her husband tries to talk to her about it she says things like I would never do that or like why would want to do something like that.
Clarisse which is Guy’s new neighbor. One day after Guy comes home from work she is walking on the sidewalk, which is very rare in their world, Clarisse and Guy start to talk and she asks him questions that make him think about life and his job she also tells him something. She says that her uncle said that firemen didn’t always start the fires they used to put them out. But she asks him one question that sticks with him she asks him if he is happy at first he blows her off and he starts to get frustrated. But one day she goes missing and Guy starts to wonder why and he finds out that she is dead and she has been since the day she goes missing.
Captain Beatty which is Guy Montag’s boss and is also the antagonist of the story. Captain Beatty as well as all the other firemen has black hair and he has a phoenix and a salamander on him. He is the one who enforces all the rules and one day Guy asks him if the job of being a firemen had always been to burn people’s houses that had books. And at first he said yes until one day there was an alarm at the station and they had to burn an old lady with all of her books and Guy became sick he didn’t go into work the next day and Captain Beatty came to check on him, but he also came to give the true backstory of the job of being a fireman he started telling him about how they used to put them out and Mildred was cleaning and Guy had a book under his pillow and Captain Beatty just kept talking like nothing happened and when he left he told Montag that any firemen that had ever accidentally taken a book with them burned it the next day but if they didn’t something would happen. When he left Guy showed his wife all of the books that he had hidden in a ventilator grill at their house and as soon as all of them were out of the ventilator and they had started to read them Captain Beatty came back and Montag already knew what he wanted so he didn’t answer the door.
This book is a dystopia because they are living in a reality where firemen start fires instead of putting them out. People are not allowed to read books, and anyone who is found with books in their house is burned, which is weird because the houses are fireproof.People are not allowed to think for themselves and they don’t really talk to each other. Basically this book is very dark and it shows what the world would be like if it had gone wrong.
Guy has his awakening when Clarisse asked him if he was happy. At first he blowed her off, but when he started to think about it the answer was no. he was not happy he started to question his job and he started to think for himself instead of thinking what they want you to think he rebelled. He stated to wonder about books so he showed his wife the twenty or so books he had hidden in a ventilator grill and as soon as he did Captain Beatty shows up for the second time that day but this time it wasnt to make sure Guy was feeling ok and Montag knew it which is why he didn’t answer the door.
In conclusion this book is very interesting and it makes you think about your own self and it teaches you not to let yourself become numb to society but to think about things that are happening around you. I would recommend this book who is able to read but just remember don’t let Captain Beatty find out that your reading books and also remember that if they hand you ruled paper write the other way.