Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Classics
ISBN: 9781681376097
Pages: 256
Publication Date: September 28, 2021

The War of the Worlds (Paperback)

by H. G. Wells, illustrated by Edward Gorey

Paperback
When massive, intelligent aliens from Mars touch down in Victorian England and threaten to destroy the civilized world, humanity's vaunted knowledge proves to be of little use. First published in 1898, H. G. Wells's masterpiece of speculative fiction has thrilled and delighted generations of readers, spawned countless imitations, and inspired dramatizations by such masters as Orson Welles and Steven Spielberg. The War of the Worlds is a fantasy that is both startlingly up-to-date and in touch with the most ancient of human fears.

In 1960, Edward Gorey prepared a set of his inimitable pen-and-ink drawings to illustrate a new edition of Wells's The War of the Worlds for the legendary Looking Glass Library. Characteristically quirky, elegant, and entrancing, Gorey's visual take on Wells's seminal tour de force was unavailable until 2005, when NYRB Classics reissued it in a special hardcover edition. Now in paperback, this edition brings back for today's readers a richly rewarding collaboration between two modern masters of all that's wonderful and strange.

Praise

Since H. G. Wells published War of the Worlds in 1898, artists have struggled to depict his alien invaders. Perhaps none succeeded so well as the illustrator Edward Gorey. . . . His wonderfully creepy 1960 edition eschews the Robby the Robot designs of pulp fiction, and the slickness of the bad 1953 film, instead delivering an insectlike infestation of pen-and-ink tendrils.
New York

The most delightful of the many editions of The War of the Worlds includes illustrations by Edward Gorey (originally published in 1960 and long out of print until now), in which those creatures look like giant mushrooms on spindly legs, primitive ancestors of the Spielberg tripods.
—Caryn James, The New York Times