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Men Like Gods (Dover Thrift Editions) Paperback – September 21, 2016
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From the Back Cover
In the summer of 1921, a disenchanted journalist escapes the rat race for a drive in the country. But Mr. Barnstaple's trip exceeds his expectations when he and other motorists are swept 3,000 years into the future. The inadvertent time travelers arrive in a world that corresponds exactly to Barnstaple's ideals: a utopian state, free of crime, poverty, war, disease, and bigotry. Unfettered by the constraints of government and organized religion, the citizens lead rich, meaningful lives, passed in pursuit of their creative fancies. Barnstaple's traveling companions, however, quickly contrive a scheme to remake the utopia in the image of their twentieth-century world.
A century after its initial publication, H. G. Wells's novel offers an enduringly relevant look at an ideal society. Conceived in the aftermath of World War I, it reflects the failings of human nature but offers hope for the future, when men and women may live like gods.
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Boring, seen in a hundred other books. But this is slightly different. Slightly more realistic than even some of Mr. Wells' own versions of utopia.
Because in this one the Earthlings bring illness and evil ideas to Eden. Yes, the flawed Earthlings bring death and destruction to Utopia and what are the goodie-goodie natives going to do about it?
I also love how Wells hints at the fact that while the people of utopia are well meaning and nice, they do seem to treat the Earthlings as lower creatures. After all they ARE Superior. By the end of the book, in fact, only the flawed or the very young show any interest in the main character from Earth. They have moved beyond us, to the point where even some of the ideas they have do not translate, and they see us as early examples of flawed humans. Like we may look at a pet ape.
Unlike his work, A Modern Utopia (Forgotten Books), this just feels more realistic and, sometimes, even has a touch of humor. This is just how people would act if they were dropped into a utopia. Sad to say I feel this hits our soul and ideals, or lack of them, right on the nose.
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Truly a rare find, this book gives us a deeper insight into the life and times of the author, H.G.Read more