Although The Illustrated Man is classic science fiction, written early in Bradburys career, it is more concerned with ideas than with science, although Bradbury often questions the consequences of science. The book contains characters from middle America. The heroes are not mythical figures but everyday people. Technology is depicted as failing to make human life better, and Bradbury shows in several stories that a return to a simpler life is desirable. He looks at space travel as a romantic journey into the unknown ending in death rather than as an epic journey into adventure.
Bradburys body of work is voluminous, from short-story collections including The Martian Chronicles (1950) and Dandelion Wine (1957) to his novel Fahrenheit 451 (1953), which was made into a film in 1966. The Illustrated Man also was filmed, in 1969. Bradbury has written plays, poems, childrens stories, and nonfiction. He received the O. Henry Award in 1947 and the Nebula Grand Master Award in 1989. He has written under a number of pseudonyms, including Guy Armory, Edward Banks, and Anthony Corvais.