In London at the turn of the 20th century, H. G. Wells's time machine mysteriously appears--empty--in a squatter's flat. From where did it come, and for what purpose was it sent? The answers to these questions--though not to an even greater mystery connected with the machine's appearance--are contained in a letter written by Wells on May 2, 1946, which falls into the hands of one David Lambert on the eve of the millennium. Lambert, an industrial archeologist, reads the letter foretelling the arrival of the machine and, half convinced the whole thing is a hoax, goes to the address Wells provides, where, at the appointed hour, the time machine materializes. Thus begins Ronald Wright's fine and fantastical novel A Scientific Romance
Romance can refer to an affair of the heart; it can also describe a heroic tale of extraordinary events. In A Scientific Romance, Wright plays on both possible meanings as he weaves a tragic story of betrayal and lost love into a larger narrative of time travel. Lambert, having lost the woman he loved, is reckless enough to test Wells's machine himself, catapulting 500 years into the future, where he finds London--indeed, all of England--a deserted, semitropical landscape. As David explores the future, he also sifts through his own past, creating in this Möbius strip of time and relationship a chilling cautionary tale about the limits of science and human ambition.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
An elegant novel...gripping and lyrical; you struggle to slow down but find yourself rushing forward. -- THE NEW YORKER
Powerful...cunningly fashioned...A fresh take on an old formula -the dystopian post-apocalypse novel -and a profound meditation on the nature of time. -- John Vernon, NEW YORK TIMES
Pure pleasure...Deeply seductive and brilliantly sustained...enthrallingly descriptive, fragile scary, easy to take seriously...A compelling cultural satire. -- Julie Myerson, OBSERVER
The most apocalyptic dystopia since Russell Hoban's RIDDLEY WALKER, achieving the same eerie fascination...In 100 years' time this book should be a classic. -- Tom Shakespeare, GUARDIAN
There is teeming life on every page of this remarkable novel...Themes are brilliantly adduced...Absorbing, dynamic, intricately clever. -- Rachelle Thackray, INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY