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The Time Machine (Illustrated) Kindle Edition
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|Kindle, September 29, 2014||
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From School Library Journal
Sarah Prielipp, Chippewa River District Library System, Mt Pleasant, MI
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
From the Publisher
- Publication Date : September 29, 2014
- Print Length : 81 pages
- ASIN : B00O2EBV7G
- File Size : 616 KB
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Language: : English
- Simultaneous Device Usage : Unlimited
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #5,560,455 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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I am really glad to have bought this Norton edition for it is, as usual, excellent in its annotated text,generous selection of contextual information as well as the inclusion of early reviews and recent criticisms. It is critically useful for the editor to include the alternate chapters of the story; it allows the reader to see how different the unused opening chapter is from the published one. The alternate opening chapter, I incline to believe, is far too technical and boring to be appealing to contemporary readers. As the editor points out, the author has revised the main text many times. And surprisingly, what is usually claimed the first edition is NOT exactly the first. That is why this edition by Prof. Arata is particularly praise-worthy as it is the result of having compared both early editions of The Time Machine published on both sides of the Atlantic, together with the earliest edition which has not been much referred to.
Contemporary reviewers analyse the novel from various perspective but the better interpretations of the story come from reviewers in the 20th C as the editor has compiled some selections from Bergonzi and Hume, whose essays are very useful. In Cantor's essay, he puts the text in a wider perspective to fit in the imperial discourse and examines the qualities that are term "modern".
My own impression is that this work is best read alongside with The Island of Doctor Moreau as both touch upon class, degeneration and cannibalism. As a parable, this story of Mr Wells' is probably his unconscious fear of the proletariat attempt to overrun the bourgeois. In The Island of Doctor Moreau, it is the beasts that try to "get" the island visitor, who has been impersonating the master of the island. This is a tale that can be read in both ways: forward and backward. Humanity in the future has fallen back in its primitive habits: lower level of intelligence and cannibalism.
This is a work by a man of genius, as one early reviewer says.
Please note that some older classics lose their freshness and ability to speak to us over time. This is absolutely not the case with the Time Machine. It is just as thrilling as the day it was written.
Also, here is an early hominid that I think looks like a Morlock. At least a little.
His guests find his adventures hard to believe though when he goes missing again, this time for years, many are left wondering what might have happened and whether his stormy not be as fictional as they thought.
So glad I finally read this book and I can see why do many people have enjoyed it. It's a beloved classic for a reason!
Top reviews from other countries
I also purchased a Wordsworth Classics edition of another of Wells' stories (actually a 2-in-1) and that includes a more substantial introduction, biography and (relevant!) end notes. I'd recommend you look out for those editions instead.
Warnings: mention of suicide, racial slur
The editor has given a very succinct overview on the development of Wells, the writer, from his financial hardship to his later success as a world-historical figure in the early twentieth century. The editor pays special attention to those contemporary writers like Wells who did not come from upper-middle class to whom a classical education was more preferable than a science education. So, at the time, Wells and Haggard, for instance, were subtly slighted by "elitist" writers and critics.
What is so impressive about the introduction is the editor's nuanced analysis on degeneration, a topic that greatly concerns the Victorians. Evolution is not always about becoming better; there is a chance to degenerate. The editor has shown how contemporary writers in the last twenty years of Victorian period expressed their concerns for the gloomy future of humanity.
I also think the editor has greatly enriched the end-notes to the main text, which comes from the first UK edition though other editors use an earlier edition as copy text and emended errors one by one. As Prof Luckhurst says in Explanatory Notes, he has been also indebted to early work by S. Arata, P. Parrinder, ect. He has supplied some findings of his own to elucidate some terms. A wonderful job done!
The flow of ideas is smooth. But on page xxiv, a misplaced subject in a sentence "mis-represents" the intended meaning of his idea: As a science journalist, drama critic, etc, IT is surprising that Well's work... My guess is that the editor is referring to the author rather than the work and so it may be: As a science journalist, a drama critic, WELLS not surprisingly has produced a work that feels like an echo-box of many literary genres...
Very happy to see a renewed interest in Wells as reflected in the long list of books and articles on his works.
Again, this book is told from the perspective of telling a story, a first hand first person account, like the previous books that I’ve read by Wells. This just seems like his writing style and why fix something that’s seems to be working. We never really know the main Characters name as he is referred to as The Time Traveller, which I find interesting, even towards the end when I think they’re going to say it, but they just say “Mr...” and stumble the rest.
I did really enjoy this book and it just hooked me from the very beginning, like I said, devouring it in one sitting. I have obviously heard little bits about this books, whether about the film or from The Big Bang Theory, (poor Sheldon) so it was good to finally get this one off my TBR list and see what the fuss is all about. And I had to go for the book of course, rather than the movie.
It is mad to think that this novel, and his other works, were written decades ago and how much of a staple he is in the Science Fiction world. I wonder where he came up with his ideas!
The book itself is a classic, there is no doubt. However, it is a short; only some 125 pages and at about 30,000 words is a novella rather than a novel.
The story involves a 'Time Traveller' who builds a time machine and explains to sceptical dinner party guests his travel forward by some eight hundred thousand or so years to a world where humankind has split into two races, the gentle Eloi living above ground and the subterranean dwelling Morlocks. The themes explore how human society and evolution may interact to create these two separate races. An interesting and no doubt radical and groundbreaking work of its time, however modern scientists may question the credibility.
There is a single short chapter towards the end where the Time Traveller goes forward to the end of the Earth as the sun dies - only some 30 million years hence, which is a much shorter time than modern science predicts.
Good to have read it, although inevitably dated.