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on 26 February 2018
For a short story, The Time Machine was so memorable for me. It's about a man who calls himself a time traveller, who tells a group of friends about his what he saw in the very distant future for humanity. Early Science Fiction like this fascinates me, because the ideas people like Wells was writing about reads as though it was written much later than 1895. Wells' science is believable, and the future he depicts is something that I could have never imagined. There are parts of his commentary on the growth of the world that I agree with and parts that I do not, but all of it is a fascinating interpretation of what a man must have seen of his own Victorian society. Despite the book's slow start, it is thought provoking and adventurous, and I would recommend it even if you aren't a fan of the genre.

Warnings: mention of suicide, racial slur
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on 6 July 2016
I will start by saying this was an extremely intelligent read that doesn't skirt around the edges.

Starting that first few chapters, Wells doesn't hang about and throws us into the story. A time traveller who proves his work in small form (with lots of scientific language) and then manages to travel through time himself and return to tell his tale.

What I find interesting is that the whole time, the book is written as if you were someone listening to the time traveller. When the story of time kicks in, it is a constant conversation with no breaks. You find yourself reading it and becoming just as fascinated as the person in the story listening. This kept the book interesting and easy to follow. It was nice not to have any interruptions such as "the time traveler paused to take a sip of tea" (as a very bad, make believe example). Many books loose it's story in lines that are not necessary and are there to just fill the book.

Saying that, I would have liked more detail of the world he visited. Wells leaves much to the imagination but I'm not sure if he left too much.

I don't want to say too much about the main bulk of the novel to save from spoilers. I will say it was catchy, something was always happening and, you just wanted to keep going to see how he escaped back to his normal time.

A good book if your busy like I have been lately, (120 pages taking me a month to read, yikes!) as you can put it down for quite a while and when you start to read again, it's easy to remember where you left off.

All in all a good read, straight to the point but could have dressed up the descriptions a little more.
3 people found this helpful
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on 25 January 2014
A wonderful story.
Has part from the original serialization that's missing from the book edition.Reason enough to pay the small sum to find out what it is.
Time travel these days in stories and films is commonplace.
Travel back to the early 1890's ;when originally penned.
Filled with imagination and mystery.
Intentionally makes you fill in gaps using your own thoughts.
Cannot recommend this enough.Read war of the world's after this,for a Victorian trip of pure imagination.
7 people found this helpful
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on 3 June 2016
I read this book when I was at school during the summer holidays, and we had to do a book report on it. It is still a powerful story, still makes me think about what is going to happen to this planet of ours in the future. It is like being on a different planet, with half of the people living lives where they have nothing to do but laze around above ground, the other half, the Morloks, live underground, where they tend to machinery, provide food for the above ground people, then sound the 'All clear' siren, which calls the aboveground people to them, and then they use them as food. Into this mix comes a time traveller from the 1800s who, when he realises what is going on, wants to change everything;. That's where I will leave it.. One more comment and I am done. The book still reads very well today, as it is very well written so, give it a go, you might like it.
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on 28 August 2016
This is a classic, what more can be said. In the days of tablets and games consoles its a shame more parents don't push their children to read a little more, especially now a days when you cant get a child to pick up a paper book but they will pick up a tablet. Books and stories like this help to develop the mind and this book was way ahead of its time. I mean published in 1895 and talking about time travel how brilliant a mind.
Do yourself a favour if not for your children pick this up and if you have read it, read it again. A classic of science fiction of not the greatest science fiction book of all time.

The Time Machine (Wisehouse Classics Edition)
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on 16 January 2017
Even today mankind continues to consider time travel a possibility rather than a fantasy. In the late nineteenth century, the science fiction novel was at it's peak as the likes of Wells and Jules Verne created fantastic new worlds for readers to explore. The Time Machine creates such a world whilst also reminding us that the world has a finite life and we likewise cannot live forever. Every action we take, every decision we make may have far reaching consequences. This short novel not only stretches our imaginations, it challenges us to consider who we are and also what we are.
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on 22 March 2014
“That is a brilliant story. I wonder I never read it before – the start is a bit hard, but the description is wonderful.”

That was my reaction as I spoke to a friend immediately I finished reading this book. It’s the sort of novel that one is presented with at school and hates. I admit when I started it I was put off by the discourse on the nature of time and space and four or more dimensions. Written in a Victorian manner, it seems like a text book rather than a framework within which Dr Who can cheerfully travel, with no mental exertion for the millions of fans.

The story swiftly changes, though, to a detailed, beautifully crafted, fantastically clearly imaged narrative by the Time Traveller, set down by his friend. At some stage I suddenly recognised the names Morlocks and Eloi, although I know I’ve not read this, just absorbed the protagonists through years of general knowledge.

It is a beautiful story, filled with dread at what might become of the Traveller and of our civilisation, with a supplement of what truly could happen at the end of the world.

I couldn’t put it down. But then, it’s not that long either. Highly recommended for anyone aged about 12 and up
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on 20 January 2015
I thought that having been reading sf for 50 years I really should read this book.
So long as I bore in mind when it was written, I was able to continue and finish it.
The audacity of victorian England shone through. How superior the time traveler was to those he met. How self confident he was to go time travelling in his indoor clothing and footwear - no doubt in the certain knowledge that all he had to do was tell whomever he met that he was British. . The story taught me a lot about society when it was written and nothing about the society he found.
It was a new and exciting idea in its time. I'm sure that hid or obscured the gaping holes in his story. Were it not a modern classic that I felt I ought to read, I would have soon given up.
Am I glad I read it? On balance, yes. Am I glad I didn't have to pay for it? Absolutely yes. Would I recommend it? Sorry but no, I couldn't.
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VINE VOICEon 27 October 2010
The 1890s were haunted by the flip-side of Darwinism - the notion that the evolution of mankind may not always follow an upward curve and that, at some point, as a species mankind would regress, degenerate, and collapse back into something altogether less impressive than the heroic, upstanding ladies and gentlemen of the Victorian era. Wells, in The Time Machine, taps into these concerns and via a rather natty piece of narrative trickery puts forward what is almost a fable about the possible ultimate destination of the human race.

The time traveller (he is never named) accelerates his machine far into the future (the year 802, 701 AD to be precise) and finds himself among the Eloi, an elfin, beautiful, delicate and rather feminine species. The Eloi live above ground and seem to like nothing more than lounging about in the sunlight and generally not doing anything. The time traveller finds them rather charming, although his attempts to communicate with them result in failure. Later in the story he encounters an altogether more sinister species, the Morlocks, nasty, brutish, living underground and only emerging at night. Even worse the Morlocks seem to prey - in a very literal sense - upon the Eloi. Needless to say adventure ensues....

Wells, via his time traveller, puts forward some notions about the respective origins of the Eloi and the Morlocks. The former represent the aristocracy flung far into the future, grown weak, idle and decadent. They are beautiful, but of no real worth to anyone, not even to themselves. The Morlocks represent the masses, the working classes, excluded from education and relying upon their brute strength in order to survive. They feed and cloth the Eloi, but they reap a terrible price in return.

It is, especially when you think of it in the context of the time in which it was written, all rather clever. Wells was able to create what was a good adventure yarn on one level work on a far deeper plain of meaning by tapping in to the concerns of the age. The time machine itself is beautifully described and it's a lovely idea but it is perhaps Wells's thoughts on the ultimate destination of mankind which give the story its lasting resonance. It's well worth reading, and not just because it is, in many ways, the grand daddy of a whole branch of science fiction.
5 people found this helpful
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on 12 August 2013
I was still in school the last time I read this. I remember enjoying it back then as one of my first forays into science fiction. It was with some trepidation that I started reading it again as part of the KUF book club. There have been many things I enjoyed as a youngster that haven't lived up to their memories. Thankfully this wasn't the case with The Time Machine.

As with all great science fiction stories it's based around a big idea, in this case what does the future offer us a species. H G Well's thoughts on this are a bold vision, all too often glimpses into the future take us to better technology, or of a race that conquers the stars. This isn't the case in this book. It poses the question, what left for mankind if we make our lives so comfortable that further progress isn't required?

This book fully deserves it's classic status, it's an imaginitive story and is well written. It might seem a little anachronistic for modern readers, but I love it. It's in keeping with the time and has an elegance that keeps me reading. That being said it does have a few issues. The main one for me was that it was too short. It would have been nice to learn more about the Morlocks in particular.

The sequence at the end stand outs for me, the trip into the real far future is stunning. A classic book that any fan of science fiction should read at least once.
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