The War of the Worlds has always held a special fascination for young readers. The novel’s action is relentless, and the book is suspenseful to the very end. In the novel, Wells sets forth some of his ideas about humanity’s place in the universe, about the evils of foreign conquests, and about human nature. At no time in The War of the Worlds is Wells overbearing or preachy. Instead, his presentation stimulates new ideas in his readers and inspires their imaginations.

Furthermore, The War of the Worlds is the novel that inspired many of the popular science-fiction stories of the present day and set in motion a whole sub-genre of alien invasion stories. Wells’s insistence on the accuracy of the novel’s background details-from a scientific explanation of the astronomical relation between Earth and Mars to place names in the English countryside-has been an important standard for later science fiction.

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