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The Time Machine (Penguin Classics)

The Time Machine (Penguin Classics)
Author: H.G. Wells
ISBN 13: 9780141439976
ISBN 10: 141439971
Edition: Reprint
Publisher: Penguin Classics
Publication Date: 2005-05-31
Format: Paperback
Pages: 128
List Price: $10.00

Note to Adobe eBook Customers: The Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader version is printable, but there is a known problem printing to printers that do not use the PostScript page description language. This problem occurs with some HP LaserJet, Epson Stylus inkjet, and Epson impact printers. Consult your printer s documentation to find out if it is PostScript compatible. This does not affect your ability to read the book on screen.

Published in 1895, The Time Machine was the first novel to suggest the theme of time travel by machine, and along with other books by Wells, it was a forerunner of the contemporary science fiction genre, then known as scientific romances.

Wells wrote mainly speculative fiction concerned with the contemporary problems of human society and its possible futures. While his works express a hope in human technology and progress, this is tempered by a realization of the possible extinction of humanity through the very same technology and the predilections of human nature.

There is a strong ethical component to his work and this relates to the ambivalence that he often expressed about the potentialities of human nature. One of the central issues that concerned him was the disparity between the elite and the masses. The Time Machine explores these concerns in a setting 800,000 years into the future.

Children's Literature

The "Classic Starts" series are hard bound, handsomely-illustrated, inexpensive abridgements of classic literature for younger readers. The concept is exemplary, but the execution is problematic. Yes, the bare bones of Wells' proto-science fiction story have been faithfully recounted in Chris Sasaki's smooth-reading, simplified adaptation, yet in the process its soul has gone missing. Abridging is one thing; bowdlerizing is another. What's lost is the late Victorian world of 1895 so marvelously conjured up by words and phrases such as "cadge," "chap," "I'd give a shilling-" and "What's the game?" Gone is the comfort of the returned Time Traveler's glass of champagne, mutton dinner, and pipe by the fire—all replaced by a quickly-chugged glass of water! As a child, I relished British editions of books precisely because of the exoticism of previously-unknown turns of phrases. They made the universe richer, fuller, more mysterious. It is a pity this edition of Wells' story will never leave its readers with that enchantment. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr