This significant collection features several first editions by H G Wells, including signed copies of some of his most popular books. Among the H G Wells books here are some of his best-loved novels, such as The Time Machine, The Food of the Gods and How It Came To Earth, and The First Men In the Moon. In addition to this, the collection is also home to many of H G Wells’s works on politics, including his wartime works and writings on history and social commentary.
Who is H G Wells?
Herbert George Wells, better known as H G Wells, was an author of early science fiction, utopian, and dystopian fiction. Born in 1866, and active from 1896-1946, Wells is generally credited with having developed the scientific romance, or science fiction, genre. His works contain some of the first instances in English literature of time travel, alien invasion, and space travel, all tropes that are now commonplace in modern science fiction, with the addition of a sense of realism which had cemented his works in popular imagination. In addition to this, Wells was also a futurist, predicting in his novels the creation of technology such as aircraft, tanks, and weapons of mass destruction. An adamant socialist, during the later years of his life, he focussed less on novels and more on his political leanings, writing extensively about equality and human rights. Many of his ideas on society can be seen in his novels, especially in his utopian works, which lay out idealistic versions of how society ought to be.
Our collection brings together a variety of rare novels and non-fiction books by H G Wells online, collating some of the best works of this renowned author.
H G Wells First Editions
Although not the first instance of time travel in literature, H G Well’s debut and arguably most famous novel did coin the phrase ‘time machine’, a term which is still often used in science fiction today. It is easy to see H G Wells’ influence on modern fiction, as many of the elements of his writing are still in use today; the idea of the traveller journeying far into the future into an unrecognisable world, whether due to catastrophe or human error, is still being seen and used today.
Likewise, in Wells’s novels The War of the Worlds and The First Men in the Moon, he explores the idea of human encounters with extraterrestrial life, and the possibilities of civilization beyond our planet. Encounters with alien species, and the idea of alien invasion, has captured the imagination and remain a clear indicator of how much of an impact Wells has had on the science fiction genre. H G Wells’s novels have continued to inspire, prompting several of his works to be adapted into movie form, some of them more than once, including The Time Machine.
The first edition copy of The Time Machine was published by Heinemann in 1895, and is still in remarkable condition for its age. This is a very special book, on account of its age and its importance in English canon, its rarity, and for how it has become so firmly cemented in people’s imaginations.
These first edition books by H G Wells are especially precious and important, not only on account of their rarity, since many were published around a century ago, but also because of the lasting effect which Wells’s work has had. Many of these books have shaped modern genres that we know and love, and the first editions are important for their legacy, as well as for the fact that they are fantastic stories which have stood the tests of time and endured in popularity for as long as they have.