Book Review

WAR OF THE WORLDS by H.G. Wells

Rating: 3.5 / 5

I have quite a few classics that I can’t believe I missed reading as an English major. In a recent readathon, one of the prompts for the team competition was to read a book on a certain page of your TBR on Goodreads. When I checked my TBR, most of the books were WAY too long to tackle in a short period of time (they happened to pick a page with mostly Stephen King novels which are not exactly known for brevity), but WAR OF THE WORLDS by H.G. Wells was an exception to the rule.

WAR OF THE WORLDS is a pretty short novel, a novel touted as being one of the first and greatest novels of science fiction. It depicts a Martian invasion in England. Mysterious cylinders fall from the sky and Martians emerge and immediately begin destroying everything in reach with weapons that decimate human opposition.

The story is told from a single narrator’s point of view and it comes across to me like a news account. The narrator is telling a story to document all that he saw during the Martians’ invasion with some accounts of things that happened further away of which he was not a witness. Given that this was written in 1898, Wells’ story was very advanced for his time and for that I can see why it has become such a classic.

The somewhat dry and very descriptive language of Wells’ style of writing at times was perhaps not to my taste, but I overall enjoyed the story. I can see why this story lent itself to adaptations on radio and film over the years.

I am glad to have had the readathon push to pick up THE WAR OF THE WORLDS. I am also participated in the #2020classics challenge hosted by @anovelfamily on Instagram to read 20 classics by the end of 2020 and this book gives me my second qualifying read so far.

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