H.G. Wells created The War of the Worlds, his archetypical story of alien invasion, amidst an 1890s backdrop of rampant and rapid industrialization, global British hegemony, and incipient war with Europe-all of which are reflected in his tale of Martian attack. The story remains startlingly relevant today in our era wracked with worldwide concerns over terrorism and national security. This new edition--with an introduction by mass-psychology expert Robert E. Bartholomew and classic illustrations by Alvin-Correa--is sure to enthrall and intrigue yet another generation of readers.
This is the granddaddy of all alien invasion stories, first published by H.G. Wells in 1898. The novel begins ominously, as the lone voice of a narrator tells readers that "No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's..."
Things then progress from a series of seemingly mundane reports about odd atmospheric disturbances taking place on Mars to the arrival of Martians just outside of London. At first the Martians seem laughable, hardly able to move in Earth's comparatively heavy gravity even enough to raise themselves out of the pit created when their spaceship landed. But soon the Martians reveal their true nature as death machines 100-feet tall rise up from the pit and begin laying waste to the surrounding land. Wells quickly moves the story from the countryside to the evacuation of London itself and the loss of all hope as England's military suffers defeat after defeat. With horror his narrator describes how the Martians suck the blood from living humans for sustenance, and how it's clear that man is not being conquered so much a corralled. --Craig E. Engler