Read The Time Machine & The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells Free Online
Book Title: The Time Machine & The War of the Worlds|
The author of the book: H.G. Wells
Date of issue: December 16th 1999
ISBN 13: 9781857988871
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 2697 times
Reader ratings: 6.2
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 9.91 MB
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I love this book. I love the story, the way it's told, and its ending. My only complaint is that I wish it were longer. But then, if it were, maybe its added length would ruin it.
I'm glad I read A Modern Utopia before I read this; many of the ideas in The Time Machine are more fleshed out in Wells's utopia. The narrator of TTM actually uses the term "utopia" several times, and I wondered while reading if his own book made Wells want to explore his own ideas further.
I highly recommend this book. And don't let its classification as "science fiction" keep you away. It's early sci fi, and it's not really a genre-d story. It's about science, love, humanity, progress, and mankind's future. I think those are all categories everyone can identify with and understand.
Oh, and the introduction by Asimov is a must-read. It reads more like a story than an introduction. Asimov's passion for science fiction and for Wells's work makes his own writing so compelling.
My classification of Wells (updated):
1. The Time Machine
2. The Island of Doctor Moreau
3. A Modern Utopia
4. The War of the Worlds
*****Commentary on film, viewed 12/30/17 and 1/2/18*****
I watched the 1960 film version of The Time Machine with Rod Taylor as "the time traveler," dubbed in the movie "H. George Wells" and referred to as George (clever, isn't it?).
I wanted to add to this review because I don't have a place where I review movies though there are some that I would love to write about. Since this is the film version of a book, I thought I'd add it here by way of comparison.
What I really liked about the movie was how the beginning was handled. Wells wrote the book in 1894, but the movie is set at the fin-de-siècle, which contributes to the tension of the time travelling and of what George discovers through his travels. It's fascinating that he leaves for his journey through time "on the eve" of the turn and comes back after the New Year has commenced. I also like the way that, because the movie was made in the 60s, George travels forward slowly at first and sees the results of both World Wars. There is also a strange predictive scene obviously not in the book where George visits 1966, and London is decimated by a nuclear bomb. I understand why the screenwriters imagined a nuclear bomb drop in the near future, but they only gave themselves six years before it happened! That blew me away (pun somewhat intended).
I also liked Rod Taylor's portrayal of George. He was a handsome actor with great facial reactions and expressions. He had a charisma about him that worked well with this character, who was willing to take risks and to fight for what he believed in. He's very believable in this role.
What was most interesting was the portrayal of the Eloi and the over simplification of the degeneration of the human race. The Eloi are all young, pretty blond people in the movie, which I understand--it's an artistic vision of what a leisure class would eventually look like. I found it, as a brown person, slightly offensive but also indicative of 1960s beauty culture. In the novel, the Eloi are the descendants of the upper classes, who become so complacent about life due to their reliance on the lower classes for all their needs, that they turn into beings who only care about leisure. They have no capacity for intellectual or analytical thought.
The lower classes, whom the bourgeoisie formerly tyrannized, have become the Morlocks, the people who live underground, taking all their technological innovations and discovered power with them. They've learned over time that the upper classes would be nothing without them. In other words, Wells shows what will happen if the class system intensifies and pushes itself to its furthest extensions. Degeneration in every way. In the movie, however, there's a brief mention through talking rings of a war between "the east" and "the west" and of how some people chose to live above ground, and some people chose to "take their chances" underground, and that's it. It doesn't explain anything, and it minimizes Wells' socio-economic moral.
The movie won an Oscar for special effects, and I can understand why. They're very well done, particularly the speeding forward and backward through time, where landscapes change before George's eyes, buildings appear and disappear, and the passing of time is made all too clear. The effects of the nuclear bomb falling on London are terribly done, but everything else is quality--much better than CGI, that's for sure.
Overall, the book is better, but the movie isn't bad. With a little more explanation of the degeneration of man and a better handling of the differences between the Morlocks and the Eloi, an emphasis on the inherit humanity in both types of people, the movie would have been great. But you can't beat good acting and the special effects of the 60s, one of my favorite time periods for effects in movies.
Read the book then see the movie. They're both worth it.
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Read information about the authorIn 1866, (Herbert George) H.G. Wells was born to a working class family in Kent, England. Young Wells received a spotty education, interrupted by several illnesses and family difficulties, and became a draper's apprentice as a teenager. The headmaster of Midhurst Grammar School, where he had spent a year, arranged for him to return as an "usher," or student teacher. Wells earned a government scholarship in 1884, to study biology under Thomas Henry Huxley at the Normal School of Science. Wells earned his bachelor of science and doctor of science degrees at the University of London. After marrying his cousin, Isabel, Wells began to supplement his teaching salary with short stories and freelance articles, then books, including The Time Machine (1895), The Island of Dr. Moreau (1896), The Invisible Man (1897), and The War of the Worlds (1898).
Wells created a mild scandal when he divorced his cousin to marry one of his best students, Amy Catherine Robbins. Although his second marriage was lasting and produced two sons, Wells was an unabashed advocate of free (as opposed to "indiscriminate") love. He continued to openly have extra-marital liaisons, most famously with Margaret Sanger, and a ten-year relationship with the author Rebecca West, who had one of his two out-of-wedlock children. A one-time member of the Fabian Society, Wells sought active change. His 100 books included many novels, as well as nonfiction, such as A Modern Utopia (1905), The Outline of History (1920), A Short History of the World (1922), The Shape of Things to Come (1933), and The Work, Wealth and Happiness of Mankind (1932). One of his booklets was Crux Ansata, An Indictment of the Roman Catholic Church. Although Wells toyed briefly with the idea of a "divine will" in his book, God the Invisible King (1917), it was a temporary aberration. Wells used his international fame to promote his favorite causes, including the prevention of war, and was received by government officials around the world. He is best-remembered as an early writer of science fiction and futurism.
He was also an outspoken socialist. Wells and Jules Verne are each sometimes referred to as "The Fathers of Science Fiction". D. 1946.
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