It's one of those books I can pick up, crawl into it and lose myself in the time period and the adventure. H.G. Wells has definitely written one of the best science fiction books ever. Considering that he originally wrote it in 1897, it was ahead of its time.
For anyone not familiar with the plot, The War of the Worlds tells the story of invaders from Mars who land in England. The synopsis on the back reads, 'Man had not yet learned to fly when H.G. Wells conceived this story of a Martian attack on England. Giant cylinders crash to earth, disgorging huge, unearthly creatures armed with heat-rays and fighting machines. Amid the boundless destruction they cause, it looks as if the end of the world has come.'
I enjoy a well crafted alien invasion story and this does not disappoint. I enjoy the setting of England before WWI, the lovely countryside, the heroism of the English army in trying to battle the Martians. The story is just such an easy, enjoyable read; even those not fond of science fiction would enjoy it.
The more recent version, starring Tom Cruise, was quite disappointing, considering the excellent cast and the pedigree of the director, Mr Steven Spielberg. I had hoped that with Spielberg involved that the movie would be set in the time frame of H.G. Wells' story. Unfortunately, it was too modernized and became a disappointing action movie that did nothing to enhance the book.
H.G. Wells also wrote well-known science fiction novels such as The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Invisible Man and The Time Machine, to name a few. But if you want to read a classic, one of the first science fiction stories and an excellent one at that, you have to try The War of the Worlds.