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The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells

>> Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Genre: Science Fiction
Publication Date: 1898 (originally), 2005 (this edition)
Pages: 284
Challenges:
Herding Cats #3, Initials Challenge #5, Decades 08 #9 (1890’s)

This is a book that has been on my “I want to read that someday, but just haven’t picked it up yet” list. This year I listed it for a couple of challenges so that I’d finally get to it.

I was surprised to discover that this book had been written in 1898. I’d always associated it with the 30’s due to the famous Orson Welles broadcast. I also associated it with black and white Science Fiction movies on Saturday afternoons while playing monopoly with my family.

The Scholastic books edition of this book that I read includes a wonderful introduction by Orson Scott Card. It really did a lot to put the story in context of H.G. Wells’ time for me. The part of the introduction that really spoke to me was the comparison of the British empire’s expansion into the continent of Africa and more primitive peoples with the invasion of Earth (and England specifically) by the Martians.

It really is quite interesting to read this book knowing that it was written before World War 1 and the development of airplanes. The story of the Martian invasion and the reaction of the English people is really quite interesting and I’m very glad I finally read it.

5 comments:

Karen :) 9/16/2008 3:19 PM  

This is one that everyone should read at least once! Glad you liked it!

SuziQoregon 9/17/2008 10:50 AM  

Karen: I'm so glad I finally read it.

Carrie 9/20/2008 9:21 AM  

I liked this book when I read it a few years ago. Then I made the mistake of watching the Tom Cruise movie (which is NOTHING like the book) and polluted my memory of it.

It's original and kinda fun in a creepy way. I liked hearing your thoughts on it!

Bookfool 9/20/2008 6:44 PM  

I've read a couple of H.G. Wells books and I suppose I *should* have realized it was written in 1898, but I didn't. The radio broadcast has always made me think "Thirties", also. I'll have to give The War of the Worlds a go, sometime. Thanks, excellent review, as always!

SuziQoregon 9/23/2008 2:06 PM  

Carrie: I've heard that the Tom Cruise movie is just awful.

Bookfool: the time setting thing kind of threw me off - the radio broadcast had it firmly in the 30's in my head and the movie version I saw ages ago was a 50's thing. I'd definitely recommend the book. I'd also recommend the edition I read with the introduction by Orson Scott Card.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I read and respond them here although not always right away. If you would prefer an email response let me know.

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