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The Day of the Triffids (20th Century Rediscoveries) Paperback – July 1, 2003
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"John Wyndham's The Day of the Triffids is one of my all-time favorite novels. It's absolutely convincing, full of little telling details, and that sweet, warm sensation of horror and mystery."
--JOE R. LANSDALE
"My son's middle name is Wyndham. Does that tell you how much I respect and revere the late John Wyndham? And The Day of the Triffids is the best of them all. He was a wonderful writer who was able to reinvigorate science fiction with spectacle and true thrills, and do so with a writing voice that created both suspense and elegance. A true master."
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Top Customer Reviews
Example - in Chapter 1 when Bill Masen encounters the doctor in the corridors of the hospital - this has been removed from this edition.
The fact this is an edited version needs to be made clear to intending purchasers
What sets "The Day of the Triffids" apart from other books in the genre is its two tiered approach to the end of the world. The first revolves around the eponymous Triffids, which are mobile, semi-carnivorous plants which are presumed to be the result of Soviet genetic tampering. While one would expect that they would be treated as a scourge, quite the opposite occurs as mankind farms them for the rich oils they produce. Thus, is the hubris of man framed quite nicely, and the pieces put in play.
For the triffids are only benign so long as man can control them; when left to their own devices they grow an intensely venomous lash that can kill a full grown human. When a bizarre stellar event leaves everyone who witnessed it blind, the time of the triffids is suddenly at hand. To go further would risk spoiling the plot, but as the few sighted survivors struggle to make sense of, and survive in, their greatly altered world, the triffids become the foremost obstacle to their continued existence.
Thus, "The Day of the Triffids" stands quite nicely as a post-apocalyptic thriller. However, it is what is going on between the lines that makes this a classic. First is the obvious comparison between the triffids and the Soviets.Read more ›
This is a classic book. It was on the GCE curriculum. It is a desecration to mutilate it in this way. Furthermore, there is nothing to suggest that the book has been abridged.
The opening scene in Triffids is mesmerizing. The basic premise of the book is that a meteor shower blinds most of the world population, except for a handful of people. One of lucky ones is Bill Masen, who was in a hospital with bandages over his eyes and was not able to watch the meteor shower. Towards the end of the book, narrator Masen speculates that the meteor shower might have been caused by man-made satellites orbiting Earth, and indeed, the whole apocalyptic vision of the novel voices the concerns any sane human being would have had shortly after WWII and the discovery of the destructive power of atomic energy.
That said, the novel is not at all a doom and gloom book. It is actually quite hopeful, optimistic, and funny. There is a romantic subplot wherein Bill meets a charming woman named Josella Payton, only to be separated from her in the aftermath of the devastating meteor shower. A good part of the book follows Bill's search for Josella through various malevolent organizations that spring up in the months after the meteor shower.
Developing alongside this story line, is the story of the triffids, a kind of six-foot-tall Venus Flytrap with a stinging whip that has the ability to pick up its roots and walk around. In the wake of world blindness, these plants begin attacking people who stumble blindly around London and the English countryside outside of London.
The novel has a very solid ending that made me feel happy to have read the book. It was such a good story I'm going to see if I can get a copy of Wyndham's other classic bestseller, The Cuckoo's of Midwich.Read more ›
End-of-the-world scenarios have of course been done to death, especially in B-movies, but "Day of the Triffids" has withstood the test of time--not because of its plot, but because it anticipated many other works and because the writing and themes are a cut above your typical pulp fiction. Nearly every episode in the book has been replicated in dozens of science fiction and horror movies and novels. Filmgoers who have seen "Resident Evil" or "28 Days Later" will recognize the opening scene, in which Wiliam Masen wakes up in a hospital room, unaware that the world as he knows it has come to a devastating end. Other scenes recall the "Night of the Living Dead" series and similar films, and the descriptions of the survivors' efforts to rebuild society clearly influenced many later works of dystopian fiction.
Wyndham adopts a minimalist "noir" style for the first sections, using a surreal first-person perspective to convey the confusion, fear, and isolation afflicting William Masen while he tries to figure out what has happened.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
it is not amazing but it is an entertaining story especially being 65 years old....it says seven more words are required for the review so here they arePublished 6 days ago by Enteryourimagination
The book was okay. This review is late so I don't remember specifics. Sorry.Published 25 days ago by James
Wyndham is not heard of nearly enough in today's reading lists and it's a crime. The man was a genius and his turn of prose can be both clean and crisp or chilling and prosaic.Published 1 month ago by Ron Horsley
No post apocalyptic classic library is complete without this book. Took me a while to get to it, but very well worth the time. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Mia
This well written end of society as we know it holds up incredibly well over the years. Except for the lack of internet this could happen at any time and one wonders if anything... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Gloria Stover
I remember seeing the film version of this book many years ago, but don't remember much. I'm glad I decided to read the novel it is based upon, as this is an excellent book, even... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Admiralu
Better than the black and white film I saw many years ago, even though that film was better than the remake done in the 80sPublished 3 months ago by LDGuell
This is a classic science fiction that makes the story sound very plausible. there are no rocket ships & ray guns - just the threat of science gone wrong. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Judy C Rauscher