When the amazing collection of authors contributed to Sam Weller and Mort Castle's new Ray Bradbury-inspired collection of short stories, Shadow Show, the master was obviously still alive. He would die just a month before the book was published, but the stories inside seem to eerily refer to a world where he was already gone. Such a macabre coincidence is of course the exact sort of thing Bradbury would've wanted on his literary tombstone.
It really is a Who's Who of the absolutely best in modern literature. Margaret Atwood, Alice Hoffman, Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill and Harlan Fucking Ellison all appear to state definitively just how the work of Bradbury inspired each of them. The result may be the greatest collection of short stories ever compiled.
And yet, there is so much sadness in the pages. Sam Weller's own "The Girl in the Funeral Parlor" is an absolutely heartbreaking tale of a flower-delivery man who falls in love with a beautiful dead girl that he arranges a display for while she is laid out for viewing and all alone.