Title: The War of the Worlds
Author: H.G. Wells
Release Date: 1897
Genre: Science Fiction
“With H.G. Wells’ other novels, The War of the Worlds was one of the first and greatest works of science fiction ever to be written. Even long before man had learned to fly, H.G. Wells wrote this story of the Martian attack on England. These unearthly creatures arrive in huge cylinders, from which they escape as soon as the metal is cool. The first falls near Woking and is regarded as a curiosity rather than a danger until the Martians climb out of it and kill many of the gaping crowd with a Heat-Ray. These unearthly creatures have heads four feet in diameter and colossal round bodies, and by manipulating two terrifying machines – the Handling Machine and the Fighting Machine – they are as versatile as humans and at the same time insuperable. They cause boundless destruction. The inhabitants of the Earth are powerless against them, and it looks as if the end of the World has come. But there is one factor which the Martians, in spite of their superior intelligence, have not reckoned on. It is this which brings about a miraculous conclusion to this famous work of the imagination.” [Goodreads]
I’ve read a few of H.G. Wells’ novels and I always love them! Not only because he wrote in one of my favorite genres, which is Science Fiction, but also because of the language. The writing style is something I love in this novel, but also in his other novels. Obviously, it’s very old fashioned and it somehow sounds like an older gentleman is telling me a story and that amuses me a lot! A lot of terrible things happen in this novel, but because of the writing style I don’t get creeped out or something. I think the way it was written is just awesome and I think it really adds to the quality of this novel.
The focus of H.G. Wells’ novels is not often on the characters and The War of the Worlds is no different. There isn’t much character development and I never feel like I’m really emphasizing with the different characters. This is one of the negative point in the novel and why I only gave it a rating of three out of five. The lack of character development is not something that really bothers me, though. I read H.G. Wells’ novels mostly for the plot anyway.
What does annoy me a bit is the role of females in his novels and also in The War of the Worlds. They are always a bit feeble and weak and I know that this image of women fits with Wells’ time, but that doesn’t mean I like reading about it. However, I must admit that there are some stronger women in The War of the Worlds as well, but as I’ve said, the focus is not on the characters, so you don’t get a lot of it.
Plot wise this was a good novel! I’ve also seen the movie with Tom Cruise, so I already knew what the plot was for the most part, but nonetheless I still enjoyed reading this novel! It is suspenseful and it the set up was logical. I really like how it is kind of a report on what has happened, so it felt like I was reading a historical document telling me that there was once an attack on earth. I think this is also why I enjoy these novels so much. They always make me feel like I’m reading reports from an alternative history.