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Archiv der Kategorie: Wells, H.G.
The Sleeper Awakes – H. G. Wells
It is certainly an easy assumption to make that the readers of H. G. Wells’ novel, “The Sleeper Awakes,” will agree that it is a truly wonderful production. Mr. Wells has devoted himself strictly to the weird and fantastic, and with great success in every case. This book is of the same character, but it is told so vividly, it is wrought out with such life-like detail, that the reader forgets that the book is only the product of a novelist’s fancy, and lives for the time intent on the strange scenes and customs and peoples of London in 2100. “When the Sleeper Wakes” is a story of the future. Its plot is not remark able, but the realistic detail with which it is worked out is. Graham, the sleeper, goes into a trance at the end of the nineteenth century and sleeps for two hundred years. During all this time his small fortune continually increases, and when Graham awakes he finds that he has become the owner of more than half the world. His awakening is the signal for a general uprising in the sleeper’s favor, led by one Ostrog. The sleeper escapes from the glass cage in which the councilors of the city have imprisoned him, joins Ostrog after an exciting chase over the great glass roof that covered the whole of London, and the councilors are defeated after a bloody battle along the moving ways. ” The Sleeper Awakes” was at its time in all respects the most daring and successful novel of the future yet written, and for those who like this sort of fiction, it only remains to be said that here is a treat in store for them.
A Short History Of The World – H. G. Wells
The romance of world history is Mr. Wells’ theme. Shorn of elaboration and complication, this new book forms an interesting, informing and authoritative story of man through the ages. The book is meant to be read straightforwardly almost as a novel is read. It gives in the most general way an account of our present knowledge of history shorn of elaboration and everything has been done to make it clear and vivid … to meet the needs of the busy general reader, too driven to study the maps and the time charts of other works.
A Short History Of The World.
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Biographical sketch of H. G. Wells (from Wikipedia):
Herbert George Wells (21 September 1866 – 13 August 1946), usually referred to as H. G. Wells, was an English writer. He was prolific in many genres, writing dozens of novels, short stories, and works of social commentary, satire, biography, and autobiography, including even two books on war games. He is now best remembered for his science fiction novels and is often called a “father of science fiction”, along with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback.
The War of the Worlds – H. G. Wells
Mr. H. G. Wells wears his skeleton of scientific knowledge so palpably on the outside that the most erratic flights of his imagination are received with a docile hushfulness accorded to few of the inventive. In The War of the Worlds, with clean-cut, stirring language, he discusses the exquisite possibilities of a bombardment of London by the planet Mars. The outrage upon experience which, with the gravity of a Swift, he calls upon us to accept is so tremendous and far-reaching as to counteract the effect of humorous details and leave a sense of horror and baffled intelligence. Over a track of forty million miles, in obedience to predictions at Lick Observatory, are shot missiles, or cylinders, which on arrival unscrew from the inside and liberate living Martians, “bipeds with flimsy, silicious skeletons and feeble musculature,” who generate a devastating Heat-Ray accompanied by puffs of green smoke, and from their gun-like tubes shower canisters of black gas. The Telegraph and the Times give fair warning, and a curate expostulates ” Why are these things permitted?” but in vain. From the hail of projectiles there is safety only in the underground railway and the Thames, though the latter is scalding hot if one of the toadish, bedevil-fished ” bipeds” dips into it so much as a foot. Just when, as a superfluous artillery man said, it threatens to be “up” with humanity—no more ” blessed concerts,” picture exhibits, or anything—and the strangers with the V-shaped mouths and oily brown skins, deprived of their accustomed excess of oxygen, are becoming inured to the increased weight of their bodies, they disappear, and are found piled, with their war machines …
The Invisible Man – H. G. Wells
Such a kind of literature as that of which The Invisible Man is a specimen is inevitable. We are living in an age of inventions. The conditions of life are being more or less modified by these. It is very natural to imagine the development of invention ; very natural also to ask whether the world will be any happier for it. Mr. Wells has remarkable literary abilities. He has also had a good scientific training, and he is saved alike by his sense and knowledge from the insanity which might easily wreck such attempts as these. The Invisible Man is decidedly striking and original, and what is rare in such books, it is also provocative of thought. The story is of a man who by following up certain scientific principles, which are carefully and plausibly explained, found that he could make himself invisible. He saw, not unnaturally, great possibilities in the discovery, possibilities of wealth beyond the dreams of avarice, and a power even greater than the power which goes with wealth. But he found when his goal was reached that it was not a paradise. In the first place, although invisible, he was not intangible. In the second place, although his body was invisible, his clothes were not. Consequently, in order to enjoy the full privileges of his invisibility, he had to go naked, which is uncomfortable in this non Edenic climate. He found, further, that if he took food he was visible until it was assimilated, and of course the dishes on which it was contained were seen mounting to the unseen mouth. Mr. Wells has thoroughly worked out his plan in his own mind, and the result is decidedly amusing.
The First Men in the Moon – H. G. Wells
There is probably no other living writer than the author of “The War of the Worlds” whose brain possesses that abnormal twist requisite to the production of such a story as “The First Men In the Moon.” The conception of a planet peopled by a race of articulated creatures, gigantic insects, endowed with something akin to human intelligence, whose entire life is passed not upon the moon’s surface, but miles below it. In chambers and passages hollowed out after the fashion of a colossal ant hill—all this described with that touch of verisimilitude which is the one thing which makes H. G. Wells readable, gives an uncanny, at times almost ghastly, effect that makes this moon story the most weird and striking of anything that he has written since the days of “The Time Machine.” He takes us on endless rambles through these vast lunar caverns, lit only by the pallid rays that come from streams of liquid blue fire, and shows us a world in which the forests are colossal growths of pink and blue and green mushrooms and the commonest utensils of everyday life are made of solid gold. It is a curious, whimsical book. and. as usual, Mr. Wells has been doubly fortunate in having a sympathetic illustrator. Mr. Shepperson’s pictorial interpretations of the text are thoroughly in keeping with the whole spirit of the thing and make the various phases of this imaginary moon life sufficiently vivid to haunt one with the persistence of a nightmare.
Outline of History – H. G. Wells
No book is provoking a more animated discussion among students of the social sciences at the present time than H. G. Wells’ Outline of History. The author’s task, as he himself sets it, is to tell, “truly and clearly, in one continuous narrative, the whole story of life and mankind so far as it is known today.” But while these two volumes are plainly for the general reader rather than for the special student of history, it does not follow that they contain nothing beyond an endless parade of names and dates. Their chief value, indeed, is in the author’s interpretation of what he writes about. Events are appraised and men are weighed in the balance as he goes along. Historians in general will not agree with some of these appraisals, nor will they credit Mr. Wells with an approach to infallibility in his judgment of the men who flit across his pages; but his estimates of the relative value of facts and forces can scarcely be brushed aside because they do not command general indorsement. On some matters, unhappily, Mr. Wells has allowed his iconoclastic proclivities to run away with him. Napoleon I, for example, cannot be disposed of as a second-grade “pestilence” because “he killed fewer people than the influenza epidemic of 1918″ (II, p. 384); nor will the world believe, so long as it retains its senses, that Napoleon III was ” a much more intelligent man” than his uncle (II, p. 438). Even the pinchbeck himself would have rebuked this insinuation. But when all is said, these two stout volumes embody a remarkable achievement. They contain astonishingly few historical inaccuracies of the customary type. The author’s advisers, and a competent galaxy of scholars they are, have kept him clear of the pitfalls. The style is terse and forceful. Mr. Wells certainly has the gift of cogent exposition.
The Island of Doctor Moreau – H. G. Wells
It is a shipwrecked student, whom chance carries to “The island of Dr. Moreau,” who tells the story. It is a daring and gruesome tale, replete with horrors. Dr. Moreau is a celebrated English biologist and vivisectionist. His experiments are of such a nature that he has had to fly from humanity. His aim has been to construct a human being with brutes and parts of brutes as his material. They are constructed In his “house of pain” and learn to speak and to walk erectly, but all relapse Into animalism. His island is peopled with these monsters.
The Island of Doctor Moreau.
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Plot summary of The Island of Doctor Moreau (from Wikipedia):
The Island of Doctor Moreau is the account of Edward Prendick, an Englishman with a scientific education who survives a shipwreck in the southern Pacific Ocean. A passing ship takes him aboard, and a man named Montgomery revives him. Prendick also meets a grotesque bestial native named M’ling, who appears to be Montgomery’s manservant. The ship is transporting a number of animals which belong to Montgomery. As they approach the island, Montgomery’s destination, the captain demands Prendick leave the ship with Montgomery. Montgomery explains that he will not be able to host Prendick on the island. Despite this, the captain leaves Prendick in a dinghy and sails away. Seeing that the captain has abandoned Prendick, Montgomery takes pity and rescues him. As ships rarely pass the island, Prendick will be housed in an outer room of an enclosed compound.
The World Set Free – H. G. Wells
The successor in our day to both Jules Verne and Edward Bellamy is H. G. Wells, and his book, “The World Set Free,” embodies more of his creed than anything heretofore published. The goal of Mr. Wells’ thinking is the end of war and the realization upon earth of a real “parliament of the world.” This outcome is to be reached, not as in Bellamy’s scheme by peaceful evolution, but only after the present social order has been rent asunder by the release of certain elemental physical forces to be revealed to man through processes similar to those that have led to the great discoveries and inventions of the more recent past. The only way by which war could be finally abolished, according to Mr. Wells, was through the demonstration of overwhelming destructiveness of these new physical agencies under partial human control. The phrase “atomic energy” is much used by Mr. Wells in describing this tremendous power that brings about the practical disintegration of the physical world as we know it today, and he prepares the reader for his disclosures concerning this explosive force by recalling the discoveries of radio-activity and the work of Marconi and their applications in our own industrial life. In this his method closely follows that of Jules Verne. On the side of social and political construction Mr. Wells is possibly less convincing, but considering the fact that he is compelled to presuppose a situation far removed from anything that this generation can easily imagine, this is not strange.
The Wheels Of Chance – H. G. Wells
Mr. Wells’s Wheels of Chance is assuredly one of the best books he has written. It is as delightful a jeu d’esprit as we have seen for many a day. Mr. Wells has a vein of the richest and most delicate humor, which enlivens every page. The hero is an original conception—original, because he comes from so very familiar a type that he is, indeed, the last hero a novelist would ordinarily select. He is a clerk in a dry goods establishment, absolutely commonplace in body, mind, and soul. For this very reason his adventures on his cycling tour in southern England make delightful reading—his deeds, words, and thoughts are so completely within the limits of our common humanity. Every reader who wheels will vote this book a triumph of psychology. The struggles at mounting, the unexpected violence of dismounting, the mastery of the simultaneous use of the handkerchief and continuous progress, the perils that envelop raising one’s hat to a passer, the accurate localization of fatigue sensations—all of these are faithfully presented by the author. A charming Quixotic romance is interwoven with the natural adventures of the tour, and the “shameful episode of the young lady in grey” will remain bright in the reader’s memory long after the book is laid aside. Unqualified praise is simply what The Wheels of Chance deserves; and underneath the sparkle of wit and fancy, one sees easily that Mr. Wells is not only a literary expert but a man of genuinely refined taste and a big heart.