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The Invisible Man (Dover Thrift Editions) Paperback – February 5, 1992
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Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
And it is the literal situation from which the novel draws most of its power. Invisibility sounds attractive--but what if you were to actually become so? How would you cope with the ordinary details of every day life? Griffin does not cope well at all, and although Wells suggests that his madness have arisen from a number of sources, he also implies that it may arise from the fact of invisibility itself, again twisting the context back into the social criticism on which the novel seems based.
First published in 1897, THE INVISIBLE MAN is one of Wells earliest novels, and for all its charms it creaks a bit in terms of plot and structure. Some may disagree, but to my mind the most effective portion of the novel are the chapters in which Griffin relates his adventures to fellow scientist Kemp--but regardless of its flaws remains extremely influential and it has tremendous dash and style throughout. Short enough to be read in a single sitting, it is a quick and entertaining read and it is also quite witty in an underhanded, subversive sort of way. Extremely memorable!
GFT, Amazon Reviewer
As to the story itself:
This is H.G. Wells' foundational science-fiction tale of a mad scientist who discovers a way to turn himself invisible. It's a masterfully told story that's been entertaining readers for roughly a hundred years, and I'd lay good odds you'll find it well worth the read.
What many readers might miss, though (I certainly did, my first time through) is that this isn't just a sci-fi potboiler; it's a modernization of the Platonic story of the Ring of Gyges. Beyond being a master storyteller, Wells was also an ardent philosopher and socialist, and like all of his other tales, there's a major political point here -- that morality derives from society -- and some additional minor political themes, like the plight of the urban poor.
Wells' genius here was to take the Platonic story of a Ring of Invisibility that inevitably led its wearer to commit injustice, and revitalize it in a modern context and in a way that made a sophisticated philosophical point.
Where Plato's Glaucon states:
"For all men believe in their hearts that injustice is far more profitable to the individual than justice, and he who argues as I have been supposing, will say that they are right. If you could imagine any one obtaining this power of becoming invisible, and never doing any wrong or touching what was another's, he would be thought by the lookers-on to be a most wretched idiot, although they would praise him to one another's faces, and keep up appearances with one another from a fear that they too might suffer injustice.Read more ›
What is so fun about this book is the pace: you really feel like you are there. It is all realistically imagined, down to the slowness of the undigested food that can still be seen in the invisible's man stomach. This makes the book far better sci-fi than the films, with the possible exception of the one with Claude Rains, which is the best one and the closest to the original novel by far.
In addition to Mary SHelley and Jules Verne, Wells helped to set the standard for all hard sci-fi that followed. Thus, if you like sci-fi as literature, this is a MUST read. But if you want a really fun read, this is also good for that.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A great classic book, the main character ( invisible man) develops throughout the book in a way you may not expect. A little to violent at times.Published 4 days ago by LK
My third HG Well’s novel read and I’ve started to notice that he often has a main character on the run from something: mustering violence to protect against innumerable or... Read morePublished 10 days ago by Alex James
The story is well written, as all H. G. Wells stories are. Character development is concise, so you can see them in your minds eye. Read morePublished 11 days ago by mber7274
Love all the old classics, fun to read, goosebumps galore..wonderful use of words and descriptions...a must read.. read them all!!!Published 19 days ago by Jorge Faberlle