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The Day Of The Triffids (S.F. MASTERWORKS) [Hardcover]

John Wyndham
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (179 customer reviews)

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Book Description

18 Oct 2001 S.F. MASTERWORKS
When Bill Masen wakes up in his hospital bed, he has reason to be grateful for the bandages that covered his eyes the night before. For he finds a population rendered helpless by the blindness that followed the spectacular display of bright green lights that filled the night sky; a population at the mercy of the Triffids. Once, with their ability to move and their carnivorous habits, the Triffids were just botanical curiosities. But now, with humans so vulnerable, they are a potent threat to humanity¿s survival. It is up to people like Bill, the few who can still see, to carve out a future...

Product details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; New edition edition (18 Oct 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575073381
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575073388
  • Product Dimensions: 14.5 x 2.9 x 22.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (179 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,075,598 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


* I had forgotten just how real this 1951 classic seems - and am impressed by how eerily relevant it now appears. The Observer * by Alex Jennings, the clear-cut narration lends itself well to Bill's creeping sense of doom. The Bookseller * Jennings carries all the characters with consummate skill. * Remains fresh and disturbing in an entirely unexpected way. The Guardian --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Book Description

¿One of those books that haunts you for the rest of your life¿ Sunday Times

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
WHEN a day that you happen to know is Wednesday starts off by sounding like Sunday, there is something seriously wrong somewhere. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite ever novel! 15 Sep 2007
Here I sit at 19, about to go back to university for my second year studying English and I find myself wondering how I can value a mid 20th century science fiction novel over all the classics and anything else on my bookshelf.

Then I look at the front cover and see the quote "One of those books that haunts you for the rest of your life" and realise that quote sums up in one sentence exactly why I love this book to the exclusion of all others.

I must have first read this at age 11/12 and having done so many times since it NEVER loses its appeal. A love story, a story of immense tragedy, of politics, of the fragility of modern life and above all of the undeniable essential nature of mankind Wyndham incorporates all these facets into a perfect tale.

Perhaps I am viewing it through rose tinted glasses because of the effect it had on me at such an impressionable age, but judging by everyone else's reviews I doubt this very much. I don't think I am being melodramatic when I say this novel opened my eyes to the true nature of the world. The characters are perfect, I felt like they were real people and at the end of every reading I am sad to close the last page and say good bye to them, if only for a short while.

My dog eared and much loved copy takes pride of place on my bookshelf. This is a novel for anybody out there who looked at the world around them and wondered... what if?
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A pageturner that poses countless questions 28 Jan 2006
Forget all the mental images you may have of this book; forget the film; in fact, forget men-eating plants altogether. Because this book is not about any of those things.
What it is about is hard to pin down. About how thin the veneer of civilisation is; about the dangers of global weaponry; about how different people would react to an apocalypse; about how society itself is best organised, or why societies are organised the way they are. What is certain is that, at various points in reading this book, you are forced to ask yourself questions to which there are no correct answers. And that is the mark of truly classic fiction.
What's more, this is a terrific story, impeccably told. A true pageturner that had me desperate to know what happened next, and yet wishing it never to end. And enough twists and turns to pack it full of incident. I'm now off to read Wyndham's other works, but I recommend you buy this now.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Published in 1951 and continues to satisfy 2 Mar 2005
Some of the best sci-fi has a long shelf-life because it's long-sighted, prescient - prophetic even. Day of the Triffids is a fine example of a science fiction tale that has as much to say about what worries and frightens people today as it did over 50 years ago. It all starts in a comfortable, well ordered, peaceful Britain, where a man who has suffered an accident at work is waiting in his hospital bed, to have the bandages removed from his eyes. As far as he knows, everything is fine, except the clock has struck 8 O'clock and he hasn't heard any sign of the medical staff. The quiet, orderly peacefulness is deceptive though. Politics, economics, technology and, most of all, hubris have the world balancing on a knife edge and it will only take a chance slip or two to plunge human civilisation into chaos. The situation:
1) There are satellite weapons hanging in the sky - out of sight and out of mind, but threatening the world with germ-warfare, nuclear attack and other ghastly inventions of amoral science;
2) A plant has been bred or genetically modified by the dastardly enemies of democracy, to provide a very useful type of oil that is going to make fish oil and a range of other profitable oils obsolete, thereby threatening certain Western economic interests.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Brilliant 5 Oct 2007
Academics have written enough about this novel to fill an entire shelf at least, and that is perhaps not a good thing since it tends to detract from the fact that this is a marvellously entertaining and thought-provoking work, maybe the single best British SF novel of the Twentieth Century.
For those not in the know, triffids are genetically engineered six foot mobile plants whose main stalk ends in a trumpetlike `flower' from which a prehensile stinger can lash out. The stinger contains venom strong enough to kill a man. The triffids can also uproot themselves and walk on their three ambulatory roots. Also, they have sticklike growths which drum against the main stem, creating a rattling noise with which some believe they communicate among themselves.
For reasons we needn't go into, some years before the opening of the novel a large number of triffid seeds was accidentally released into the upper atmosphere ensuring that they were dispersed across the planet. Not so long after, triffids began growing and multiplying everywhere.

At the start of the novel however, triffid researcher Bill Mason, who has been in hospital after an accidental triffid sting to his eyes, awakens to a strangely silent world. As his eyes were bandaged he was one of the few people to miss a worldwide display of cometary debris burning up in the earth's atmosphere.
Soon he discovers that the strange fireworks have burnt out the retinae of everyone who witnessed them. In the days that follow, the very few who have kept their sight attempt to reorganise, but it is only Bill who realises that now the infrastructure of civilisation has disappeared, the triffids may now become masters of the earth.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Typeface is far too small
Penguin Essential Edition 2014 with dark grey, yellow, red and pale blue cover. The type is much much too small. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Jamie Wood
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good item. Thank you.
Published 19 days ago by Mrs. X. Goddard
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Classic book. As convincing today from the time it was written.
Published 21 days ago by kathy mason
5.0 out of 5 stars Triffids
Seen a question on Pointless about John Wyndham books and remembered the tv series vaguely so thought I should give it a go. Read more
Published 22 days ago by Pr Overend
5.0 out of 5 stars first class book
Excellent book but with a very poor non ending. What happens after bill etc leave for the isle of wight

Hugh mcdonald
Published 1 month ago by Hugh Alexander McDonald
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Old but the writing was so good that it has not aged. High quality science fiction.
Published 1 month ago by Susan Jean McEwan
5.0 out of 5 stars great reading makes you think about what could happen with ...
great reading makes you think about what could happen with so many idiots tampering with so many things that should be left well alone and the brainwashed clowns we call... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Derek Dyer
5.0 out of 5 stars A must to read
Slightly dated but a really good read
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Ra Jameson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
fantastic read
Published 2 months ago by brian ayers
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply one of the finest Science-fiction books ever written
Simply one of the finest Science-fiction books ever written.
Read it as a child and several times since.
If you haven't read this, you should.
Published 2 months ago by Flatpicker
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