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The Invisible Man

The Invisible Man

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The Invisible Man

3/5 (2,189 ratings)
197 pages
2 hours
Apr 9, 2015


The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand. He was wrapped up from head to foot, and the brim of his soft felt hat hid every inch of his face but the shiny tip of his nose; the snow had piled itself against his shoulders and chest, and added a white crest to the burden he carried. He staggered into the "Coach and Horses" more dead than alive, and flung his portmanteau down.

"A fire," he cried, "in the name of human charity! A room and a fire!" He stamped and shook the snow from off himself in the bar, and followed Mrs. Hall into her guest parlour to strike his bargain. And with that much introduction, that and a couple of sovereigns flung upon the table, he took up his quarters in the inn.

Mrs. Hall lit the fire and left him there while she went to prepare him a meal with her own hands. A guest to stop at Iping in the wintertime was an unheard-of piece of luck, let alone a guest who was no "haggler," and she was resolved to show herself worthy of her good fortune. As soon as the bacon was well under way, and Millie, her lymphatic maid, had been brisked up a bit by a few deftly chosen expressions of contempt, she carried the cloth, plates, and glasses into the parlour and began to lay them with the utmost éclat. Although the fire was burning up briskly, she was surprised to see that her visitor still wore his hat and coat, standing with his back to her and staring out of the window at the falling snow in the yard.

His gloved hands were clasped behind him, and he seemed to be lost in thought. She noticed that the melting snow that still sprinkled his shoulders dripped upon her carpet. "Can I take your hat and coat, sir?" she said, "and give them a good dry in the kitchen?"

Apr 9, 2015

About the author

YAZAR:MURAT UKRAYYetkinlikler:Aynı zamanda bir yazar olan ve yaklaşık genel araştırma konuları ile fizikle ve birleşik alan kramı ile ilgili 2006’dan beri kaleme aldığı yaklaşık 12 eseri bulunan Murat UKRAY, yine bunları kendi kurmuş olduğu çeşitli web siteleri üzerinden, kitaplarını sadece dijital elektronik ortamda, hem düzenli olarak yılda yazmış veya yayınlamış olduğu diğer eserleri de yayın hayatına e-KİTAP ve POD (Print on Demand -talebe göre yayıncılık-) sistemine göre yayın hayatına geçirerek okurlarına sunmayı ilke olarak edinirken; diğer yandan da, projenin SOSYAL yönü olan doğayı korumak amaçlı başlattığı "e-KİTAP PROJESİ" isimli yayıncılık sistemiyle KİTABINI KLASİK SİSTEMLE YAYINLAYAMAYAN "AMATÖR YAZARLAR" için, elektronik ortamda kitap yayıncılığı ile kitaplarını bu sistemle yayınlatmak isteyen PROFESYONEL yayıncılar ve yazarlar için de hemen hemen her çeşit kitabın (MAKALE, AKADEMİK DERS KİTABI, ŞİİR, ROMAN, HİKAYE, DENEME, GÜNLÜK TASLAK) elektronik ortamda yayıncılığının önünü açan e-YAYINCILIĞA 2010 yılı başlarından beri başlamıştır ve halen daha ilgili projeleri yürütmektedir..Aynı zamanda YAZAR KOÇLUĞU ve KUANTUM & BİRLEŞİK ANA KURAMI doğrultusunda, kişisel gelişim uzmanlığı konularında da faaliyet göstermektedir..Çalışma alanları:Köşe yazarlığı yapmak, Profesyonel yazarlık (12 yıldır), Blog yazarlığı, web sitesi kurulumu, PHP Programlama, elektronik ticaret sistemleri, Sanal kütüphane uygulamaları, e-Kitap Uygulamaları ve Yazılımları, Kişisel gelişim, Kuantum mekaniği ve Birleşik Alan teorisi ile ilgili Kuramsal ve Uygulama çalışmaları..

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The Invisible Man - Murat Ukray


Chapter I: The Strange Man’s Arrival

The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand. He was wrapped up from head to foot, and the brim of his soft felt hat hid every inch of his face but the shiny tip of his nose; the snow had piled itself against his shoulders and chest, and added a white crest to the burden he carried. He staggered into the Coach and Horses more dead than alive, and flung his portmanteau down. A fire, he cried, in the name of human charity! A room and a fire! He stamped and shook the snow from off himself in the bar, and followed Mrs. Hall into her guest parlour to strike his bargain. And with that much introduction, that and a couple of sovereigns flung upon the table, he took up his quarters in the inn.

Mrs. Hall lit the fire and left him there while she went to prepare him a meal with her own hands. A guest to stop at Iping in the wintertime was an unheard-of piece of luck, let alone a guest who was no haggler, and she was resolved to show herself worthy of her good fortune. As soon as the bacon was well under way, and Millie, her lymphatic maid, had been brisked up a bit by a few deftly chosen expressions of contempt, she carried the cloth, plates, and glasses into the parlour and began to lay them with the utmost éclat. Although the fire was burning up briskly, she was surprised to see that her visitor still wore his hat and coat, standing with his back to her and staring out of the window at the falling snow in the yard. His gloved hands were clasped behind him, and he seemed to be lost in thought. She noticed that the melting snow that still sprinkled his shoulders dripped upon her carpet. Can I take your hat and coat, sir? she said, and give them a good dry in the kitchen?

No, he said without turning.

She was not sure she had heard him, and was about to repeat her question.

He turned his head and looked at her over his shoulder. I prefer to keep them on, he said with emphasis, and she noticed that he wore big blue spectacles with sidelights, and had a bush side-whisker over his coat-collar that completely hid his cheeks and face.

Very well, sir, she said. "As you like. In a bit the room will be warmer."

He made no answer, and had turned his face away from her again, and Mrs. Hall, feeling that her conversational advances were ill-timed, laid the rest of the table things in a quick staccato and whisked out of the room. When she returned he was still standing there, like a man of stone, his back hunched, his collar turned up, his dripping hat-brim turned down, hiding his face and ears completely. She put down the eggs and bacon with considerable emphasis, and called rather than said to him, Your lunch is served, sir.

Thank you, he said at the same time, and did not stir until she was closing the door. Then he swung round and approached the table with a certain eager quickness.

As she went behind the bar to the kitchen she heard a sound repeated at regular intervals. Chirk, chirk, chirk, it went, the sound of a spoon being rapidly whisked round a basin. That girl! she said. There! I clean forgot it. It's her being so long! And while she herself finished mixing the mustard, she gave Millie a few verbal stabs for her excessive slowness. She had cooked the ham and eggs, laid the table, and done everything, while Millie (help indeed!) had only succeeded in delaying the mustard. And him a new guest and wanting to stay! Then she filled the mustard pot, and, putting it with a certain stateliness upon a gold and black tea-tray, carried it into the parlour.

She rapped and entered promptly. As she did so her visitor moved quickly, so that she got but a glimpse of a white object disappearing behind the table. It would seem he was picking something from the floor. She rapped down the mustard pot on the table, and then she noticed the overcoat and hat had been taken off and put over a chair in front of the fire, and a pair of wet boots threatened rust to her steel fender. She went to these things resolutely. I suppose I may have them to dry now, she said in a voice that brooked no denial.

Leave the hat, said her visitor, in a muffled voice, and turning she saw he had raised his head and was sitting and looking at her.

For a moment she stood gaping at him, too surprised to speak.

He held a white cloth—it was a serviette he had brought with him—over the lower part of his face, so that his mouth and jaws were completely hidden, and that was the reason of his muffled voice. But it was not that which startled Mrs. Hall. It was the fact that all his forehead above his blue glasses was covered by a white bandage, and that another covered his ears, leaving not a scrap of his face exposed excepting only his pink, peaked nose. It was bright, pink, and shiny just as it had been at first. He wore a dark-brown velvet jacket with a high, black, linen-lined collar turned up about his neck. The thick black hair, escaping as it could below and between the cross bandages, projected in curious tails and horns, giving him the strangest appearance conceivable. This muffled and bandaged head was so unlike what she had anticipated, that for a moment she was rigid.

He did not remove the serviette, but remained holding it, as she saw now, with a brown gloved hand, and regarding her with his inscrutable blue glasses. Leave the hat, he said, speaking very distinctly through the white cloth.

Her nerves began to recover from the shock they had received. She placed the hat on the chair again by the fire. I didn't know, sir, she began, that— and she stopped embarrassed.

Thank you, he said drily, glancing from her to the door and then at her again.

I'll have them nicely dried, sir, at once, she said, and carried his clothes out of the room. She glanced at his white-swathed head and blue goggles again as she was going out of the door; but his napkin was still in front of his face. She shivered a little as she closed the door behind her, and her face was eloquent of her surprise and perplexity. "I never, she whispered. There!" She went quite softly to the kitchen, and was too preoccupied to ask Millie what she was messing about with now, when she got there.

The visitor sat and listened to her retreating feet. He glanced inquiringly at the window before he removed his serviette, and resumed his meal. He took a mouthful, glanced suspiciously at the window, took another mouthful, then rose and, taking the serviette in his hand, walked across the room and pulled the blind down to the top of the white muslin that obscured the lower panes. This left the room in a twilight. This done, he returned with an easier air to the table and his meal.

The poor soul's had an accident or an op'ration or somethin', said Mrs. Hall. What a turn them bandages did give me, to be sure!

She put on some more coal, unfolded the clothes-horse, and extended the traveller's coat upon this. And they goggles! Why, he looked more like a divin' helmet than a human man! She hung his muffler on a corner of the horse. And holding that handkerchief over his mouth all the time. Talkin' through it! ... Perhaps his mouth was hurt too—maybe.

She turned round, as one who suddenly remembers. Bless my soul alive! she said, going off at a tangent; "ain't you done them taters yet, Millie?"

When Mrs. Hall went to clear away the stranger's lunch, her idea that his mouth must also have been cut or disfigured in the accident she supposed him to have suffered, was confirmed, for he was smoking a pipe, and all the time that she was in the room he never loosened the silk muffler he had wrapped round the lower part of his face to put the mouthpiece to his lips. Yet it was not forgetfulness, for she saw he glanced at it as it smouldered out. He sat in the corner with his back to the window-blind and spoke now, having eaten and drunk and being comfortably warmed through, with less aggressive brevity than before. The reflection of the fire lent a kind of red animation to his big spectacles they had lacked hitherto.

I have some luggage, he said, at Bramblehurst station, and he asked her how he could have it sent. He bowed his bandaged head quite politely in acknowledgment of her explanation. To-morrow? he said. There is no speedier delivery? and seemed quite disappointed when she answered, No. Was she quite sure? No man with a trap who would go over?

Mrs. Hall, nothing loath, answered his questions and developed a conversation. It's a steep road by the down, sir, she said in answer to the question about a trap; and then, snatching at an opening, said, It was there a carriage was upsettled, a year ago and more. A gentleman killed, besides his coachman. Accidents, sir, happen in a moment, don't they?

But the visitor was not to be drawn so easily. They do, he said through his muffler, eyeing her quietly through his impenetrable glasses.

But they take long enough to get well, don't they? ... There was my sister's son, Tom, jest cut his arm with a scythe, tumbled on it in the 'ayfield, and, bless me! he was three months tied up sir. You'd hardly believe it. It's regular given me a dread of a scythe, sir.

I can quite understand that, said the visitor.

He was afraid, one time, that he'd have to have an op'ration—he was that bad, sir.

The visitor laughed abruptly, a bark of a laugh that he seemed to bite and kill in his mouth. "Was he?" he said.

He was, sir. And no laughing matter to them as had the doing for him, as I had—my sister being took up with her little ones so much. There was bandages to do, sir, and bandages to undo. So that if I may make so bold as to say it, sir—

Will you get me some matches? said the visitor, quite abruptly. My pipe is out.

Mrs. Hall was pulled up suddenly. It was certainly rude of him, after telling him all she had done. She gasped at him for a moment, and remembered the two sovereigns. She went for the matches.

Thanks, he said concisely, as she put them down, and turned his shoulder upon her and stared out of the window again. It was altogether too discouraging. Evidently he was sensitive on the topic of operations and bandages. She did not make so bold as to say, however, after all. But his snubbing way had irritated her, and Millie had a hot time of it that afternoon.

The visitor remained in the parlour until four o'clock, without giving the ghost of an excuse for an intrusion. For the most part he was quite still during that time; it would seem he sat in the growing darkness smoking in the firelight—perhaps dozing.

Once or twice a curious listener might have heard him at the coals, and for the space of five minutes he was audible pacing the room. He seemed to be talking to himself. Then the armchair creaked as he sat down again.

Chapter II: Mr. Teddy Henfrey’s First Impressions

At four o'clock, when it was fairly dark and Mrs. Hall was screwing up her courage to go in and ask her visitor if he would take some tea, Teddy Henfrey, the clock-jobber, came into the bar. My sakes! Mrs. Hall, said he, but this is terrible weather for thin boots! The snow outside was falling faster.

Mrs. Hall agreed, and then noticed he had his bag with him. Now you're here, Mr. Teddy, said she, I'd be glad if you'd give th' old clock in the parlour a bit of a look. 'Tis going, and it strikes well and hearty; but the hour-hand won't do nuthin' but point at six.

And leading the way, she went across to the parlour door and rapped and entered.

Her visitor, she saw as she opened the door, was seated in the armchair before the fire, dozing it would seem, with his bandaged head drooping on one side. The only light in the room was the red glow from the fire—which lit his eyes like adverse railway signals, but left his downcast face in darkness—and the scanty vestiges of the day that came in through the open door. Everything was ruddy, shadowy, and indistinct to her, the more so since she had just been lighting the bar lamp, and her eyes were dazzled. But for a second it seemed to her that the man she looked at had an enormous mouth wide open—a vast and incredible mouth that swallowed the whole of the lower portion of his face. It was the sensation of a moment: the white-bound head, the monstrous goggle eyes, and this huge yawn below it. Then he stirred, started up in his chair, put up his hand. She opened the door wide, so that the room was lighter, and she saw him more clearly, with the muffler held up to his face just as she had seen him hold the serviette before. The shadows, she fancied, had tricked her.

Would you mind, sir, this man a-coming to look at the clock, sir? she said, recovering from the momentary shock.

Look at the clock? he said, staring round in a drowsy manner, and speaking over his hand, and then, getting more fully awake, certainly.

Mrs. Hall went away to get a lamp, and he rose

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What people think about The Invisible Man

2189 ratings / 105 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (2/5)
    Misanthropic and bereft of philosophy, it begins as farce and concludes in a homicidal froth. Pity.
  • (2/5)
    A disappointing read. H.G Wells has much better tales. I would not recommend wasting your time on this one.
  • (2/5)
    The Invisible Man was a jerk who was mean to people and tortured a cat. This pissed me off and has left my mentally incapable of leaving a more detailed review. I expected better.
  • (4/5)
    In H. G. Wells' classic novel, a scientist turns himself invisible and wreaks havoc in rural England. This book is a versatile classic because it could be read by someone who is young or who simply wants to read fluff, but it can also be appreciated by more careful readers who are looking for undercurrents of meaning. It's a tragi-farcical romp in 19th century England, but it's also a warning about what people might do simply because they can get away with it. This is a classic that anyone interested in science fiction should read.
  • (4/5)
    An inventive & exciting story by one of the foremost Science Fiction authors of his era, whose literary fame encompasses Histories & Philosophy. Created from the serialized tale published in 1897 in a UK magazine, Pearson's Weekly, The Invisible Man as the title suggests has a main character Griffin who becomes invisible. Wells examines the good aspects & pitfalls of such a transformation with the emphasis on the downside as Griffin becomes increasingly erratic - no spoiler here - read it for the dramatic events and conclusion.
  • (5/5)
    Excellent! A classic thriller.
  • (2/5)
    Het gegeven is natuurlijk fascinerend, maar de uitwerking valt tegen: traag en gebroken ritme. Lectuur opgegeven na 120 blz
  • (4/5)
    Mr og Mrs Hall får en pudsig logerende, der er pakket helt ind i bandager. Han er opfarende og ubehagelig. Efterhånden opdager man at han er helt usynlig bag bandagerne og at han supplerer sine sparsomme midler ved at snige sig ind hos Pastor Bunting og hugge penge. Uheldigvis er han voldsomt forkølet og nyser tit, så han har ikke succes som tyv. Han anholdes, men undslipper usynlig, men nøgen og det er halvkøligt. Han åbenbarer sig for en gammel studiebekendt, Dr. Kemp og vi finder ud af at han hedder Griffin. Han er prosektor ved et usselt universitet og opdager lidt tilfældigt at han kan gøre hæmoglobin gennemsigtigt. Han forestiller sig et usynligt menneske og den magt, den kan give, men han er nødt til at forske i hemmelighed og fattigdom. Modgangen gør ham småskør og da han endelig finder formlen for usynlighed har han ikke længere forstand nok til at udnytte den fornuftigt, men ender med at blive jaget som et vildt dyr.En klassiker og et ganske interessant psykologisk studie
  • (4/5)
    “Every conceivable sort of silly creature that has ever been created has been sent to cross me. If I have much more of it, I shall go wild. I shall start mowing them” says Griffin: the invisible man. H G Well’s character is unsympathetic in the extreme and this is what in the end gives this book a bit of an edge. When we first meet Griffin he does not come across as a mad scientist, but rather an irascible one, albeit with a vicious streak. His paranoia increasingly takes hold of him and he fights back to such an extent that he comes to believe that his natural place is to rule over the visible fools and dolts that try to apprehend him.We first meet Griffin as a mysterious character seeking a place of refuge in a seaside town somewhere in the South of England. He rents a room in a small boarding house where he can lock himself away and work. His curious landlady and fellow guests soon interfere with his plans and he uses his invisibility first to frighten them and then to make his escape. This first section of the book has the feel of a slapstick movie as Wells has great fun describing the antics of those trying to apprehend an invisible man. There are fights, chases, robberies, near murders, until finally the invisible man becomes notorious and must now live on his wits to hide from a nation bent on tracking him down.A wounded Griffin manages to escape and blunders into the house of Mr Kemp an old friend from university days and initially tricks him into giving him some aid. He slowly starts to tell Kemp his story and this is where the novel moves up a gear. Griffin has used himself as a guinea pig to test a chemical that he has invented that can neutralise the colour in skin pigmentation. His aim was to turn himself invisible, so that he could profit from the advantages that this would give him. He had not thought of the problems of being invisible and his first venture out into the streets of London naked in January soon made him feel that he was in a hostile world. Finding shelter and food were soon problematical and Wells description of Griffin in this altogether different environment is both imaginative and exciting. Griffin’s story is told in the first person, which contrasts nicely with the first section of the book which tells of Griffin’s exploits largely in the third person where we see the sometimes comical effects on other people of an aggressive invisible man.Dr Kemp soon realises that his old friend is now nothing more than a brutally selfish individual, whose only thought is how he can use his invisibility for his own gain and his obvious delight in his ability to hurt other people convinces Kemp he is mad and dangerous. The remainder of the book takes on the appearance of a thriller as Griffin is hunted downWells’s novel has plenty of thrills and spills and there is the excitement of the chase, which rounds out the novel nicely. There is also the fantasy of being invisible and Wells brings out this aspect of his story to fire the imagination making it another early entry into the ranks of science fiction. When Wells switches the emphasis from being a mystery adventure story into something more fantastical then the novel started to work for me. Published in 1897; the novel cannot escape it’s British Victorian flavour and so we are not surprised when Doctor Kemp wonders about putting powdered glass on the road to impede the invisible man “It’s cruel I know, it’s unsportsmanlike” For me this adds to the charm and a busy street in London full of Hansom cabs and other horse drawn carriages would be just as dangerous to an invisible person as motor car traffic would be today. A 3.5 star read.
  • (4/5)
    Ein seltsamer GastIn Iping, einem kleinen englischen Dorf, kehrt ein seltsamer Gast in den Wirtshof ein. Völlig vermummt unter Bandagen und mürrisch bezieht die Gestalt ein Zimmer und lässt sich nur selten blicken. Da ist es weniger verwunderlich, dass sofort die Spekulationen unter den anderen Gästen und Bewohnern beginnen: Was hat dieser Mann zu verbergen? Was befindet sich unter der Vermummung?Je länger der Gast dort bleibt, desto seltsamer finden ihn die Menschen. Dann geschieht in dem Dorf ein rätselhafter Raub. Natürlich ergreifen die Bewohner die Initiative und wollen den Fremden zur Rede stellen. Denn wer, denn nicht er, soll diesen Raub verübt haben. Doch als dieser die Bandagen endlich löst, ergreift sie Entsetzen. Denn darunter befindet sich…. Nichts.Vom Helden zum AntiheldenH. G. Wells beschreibt hier die Geschichte des Chemikers Griffin. Zeit seines Lebens beschäftigt wer sich mit außergewöhnlichen Experimenten. Nach einigen gescheiterten Versuchen ist es ihm schlussendlich gelungen, das Unmögliche möglich zu machen: Er wird unsichtbar.Doch was ihm zunächst als großer Vorteil erscheint, wird ihm schnell zum Verhängnis. Die Menschen haben Angst vor ihm. Denn so etwas können und wollen sie nicht verstehen.Auch Griffin tut sein Eigenes dazu, denn er ist nicht gerade das, was man als einfachen Zeitgenossen schildern würde. Er wird oft von Zornesanfällen übermannt und ist ansonsten auch sehr impulsiv, wenn nicht gar wahnsinnig veranlagt.So erlebt der Leser hier einen agierenden Protagonisten, den er zwar grundsätzlich versteht, dem er aber keine Sympathie entgegen bringen kann. Und fehlt die Sympathie, bleibt auch das Mitgefühl aus. So wird der Protagonist, der für den Leser eigentlich ein Held sein soll, zum klassischen Antihelden. Und trotzdem bleibt man gefesselt, denn Wells ist ein großartiger Geschichtenerzähler. Einfach und klar ist seine Sprache. Denn obwohl der Roman bereits 1897 erschien, hat die Sprache auch für den heutigen Leser nichts an seiner Modernität verloren.A scientific romancesDer Unsichtbare zählt zu den frühen Werken des Autors. Dieser selbst ordnet diesen in seiner Schaffenszeit zu den „scientific romances“, also Romane die man heute als Science Fiction Romane bezeichnen würde.Wells zeigt hier auf, dass der Traum von der Unsichtbarkeit nicht immer ein positiver sein muss. Denn was die Menschen nicht verstehen, macht ihnen Angst und was ihnen Angst macht, das jagen sie.Ein wirklich empfehlenswerter und kurzweiliger Roman von einem großartigen Autor.
  • (2/5)
    This is such a famous novel that I was expecting a far better read. The opening chapter, as a muffled mysterious stranger comes to an inn, asking for a room and to not be disturbed is full of promise. But the rest of the story was tedious, as the invisible man loses his temper, and seems only to want to revenge himself on others. What is fascinating is the title which captures the imagination. But Wells strangely concentrates on the downside of invisibility - having to be naked in cold weather, being unable to eat invisibly, having others bump into you, without having some fun plus side moments.So, a great idea, and I'm sure this is why the novel is 'a classic' - but none of the characters were particularly interesting, the invisible man himself plain peculiar, and what he gets up to bizarre and slow-moving.
  • (5/5)
    Still a great read.
  • (4/5)
    The set-up to this story is somewhat unusual, as it begins with a stranger wrapped in bandages arriving at an inn on a snowy night. Everyone assumes he's horribly disfigured, and the text goes on a bit as if that is indeed the case, but given the title we the reader are well aware that he is in fact invisible. That said, I did very much enjoy this story. It's more of a horror story than I expected, with the titular character unquestionably playing the part of the villain (as opposed to a mostly well-meaning scientist cursed by his own hubris, as with Frankenstein or Dr. Jekyll). The pitfalls of invisibility (such as being able to see through one's own eyelids, for example) added a certain spark to the narrative, and parts were surprisingly suspenseful. The Invisible Man's motivations were sort of vague and unsatisfying, but in general I recommend this book.
  • (3/5)
    This was a quick read. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great. I was surprised that we didn't get to hear the invisible man's story until so far in. From the perspective and information given, it was like the fact that he was invisible was supposed to eventually strike us as a great surprise, but... it's called "The Invisible Man." Anyway, it did pick up once we finally heard his story.From the beginning, I wanted to like the invisible man, or at least to have some sympathy for him. Oh, maybe he has a reason for not wanting to talk to anybody, I hoped, but he was just a bad-tempered jerk from the start. I feel like the author could have addressed some deeper themes here if the story had been just a little different, but maybe it's just supposed to be more of a fun read.I did find the ideas about how he became invisible interesting-- the real science fiction part of it. I also laughed at one scene where he has a dreadful time trying to convince someone he's invisible, and the end was somewhat exciting.
  • (4/5)
    I was looking for something short to read and came across an old beat-up copy of The Invisible Man on our shelves. It seemed like the perfect book --- a little science fiction, a compact story, something to read while sitting on the roof enjoying a sunny afternoon.Griffin, a scientist, invents a machine that uses optics to make things invisible to the naked eye. He tests his machine, and the procedure, on himself. He completes the process but he doesn’t have time to reverse it before he is kicked out of the inn where he’s conducting his experiments by the people of the town who don’t trust him. With no options, and no desire to explain himself or his work, he leaves the inn in his new invisible state. He steals to get what he needs then enlists a man to assist him in getting his notes back from the inn where he abandoned them. When he, and his invisible state, are reported to the authorities, Griffin flips and goes on a bit of a terror spree wanting to get back at the man who betrayed him.The science fiction aspect of the book is interesting and the explanation believable. Griffin wasn’t a likable character though --- he’s arrogant, mean, and capable of murder. I kept wondering what it was that made him that way because I didn’t believe it could have been the invisibility alone. He does tell his story but it doesn’t do anything to help his cause considering he openly talks of murder, setting fire to a place to hide his work, and robbing people. I’m fine with not liking the main character and here Griffin is really just being used as social commentary anyway so I understood the reasoning for it even if he didn’t appeal to me.Having not read much HG Wells since high school, I was slightly stunned to find I didn’t like this one as much as I thought I would. Don’t misinterpret that, I did like it, just not love it. I’m a person that likes to bond with the main character and here that wasn’t possible. The reader isn’t supposed to like Griffin but even knowing that didn’t help me. For me, he was the cruel scientist bent on revenge not caring about the people he was planning to hurt along the way to get what he wanted. As I’m writing this review I’m beginning to wonder if I’m experiencing an aversion to Wells’s writing and now I’m thinking of going back to re-read The Time Machine to see what I think of that. Interesting how that happens to me sometimes.
  • (4/5)
    [The Invisible Man] by H. G. Wells First line:~ The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand ~I did not enjoy this one as much as [The Island of Doctor Moreau] which I also just read. Once again, I am struck, by the dangers of indiscriminate ‘scientific’ experimentation. This story reminded me of Frankenstein although somewhat different. This time the scientist creates the ‘monster’ in himself and cannot deal with the consequences of his displacement from society. Frankenstein’s monster is the innocent victim in his story and the invisible man is a victim of his own creativity, no innocence there. The evolution of Frankenstein’s monster comes from his lack of acceptance right from the beginning and no experience at all with healthy relationships or an understanding of how to behave socially. Griffin’s situation is a devolution from years of experience relating to society and yet, when he runs into difficulty becomes a homicidal maniac. I cannot help but think that he had those tendencies to start with! (3.5 stars)
  • (4/5)
    This is another book that I loved. I remember watching the movie long, long ago. This is a classic tale of a brilliant scientist who makes a wonderful discovery, and then loses his mind.The book was long in the build up, and did meander a bit. I liked it when the Invisible Man decided that he wanted to create a reign of terror. I would, personally, have loved a little more exploration of the subject at this point. The evil genius, the evil joker, are all subjects that have fascinated me for years. HGW was such a great writer, he would have been brilliant had he delved deeper into the mind of the scientist.
  • (4/5)
    Wells' novel was originally serialized in Pearson's Magazine in 1897, and published as a novel the same year. Part ghost story and part science fiction tale, Wells’s The Invisible Man begins with the arrival of a mysterious, shrouded stranger in the small village of Iping. "The stranger came in early February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow,"(p 1)A man heavily clothed with hats, bandages and gloves takes a room at a local inn, and quickly unnerves the townspeople with his strange laboratory experiments and odd behavior. A series of burglaries take place in the village, and with her suspicion aroused, the innkeeper Mrs. Hall confronts the stranger. Removing all of his clothing and bandages, the man reveals that there is nothing underneath and that he is invisible. Terrified, Mrs. Hall flees and the police attempt to catch the man, but he throws off his clothes and thus eludes capture. After running from town to town, breaking into houses and stealing things along the way, the invisible man encounters a former associate, Dr. Kemp. The invisible man, who we finally learn is called Griffin, was a brilliant medical student of Dr. Kemp’s at the university. Griffin theorizes that if a person's refractive index is changed to exactly that of air and his body does not absorb or reflect light, then he will be invisible. He successfully carries out this procedure on himself, but cannot become visible again. "The man's become inhuman, I tell you, said Kemp."(p 127) As Griffin grows increasingly unstable, he begins to feel self-delusions of grandeur and invincibility that lead to this tale’s shocking conclusion. The Invisible Man is reminiscent of Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde (published a decade earlier) in the creation of an alter ego that quickly goes out of control. That is the interest of this story along with how Wells brilliantly works out the development of the theme if invisibility. If one could become invisible, what then? Certainly I found this aspect appealing when I first read the novel and undoubtedly it has contributed to the continuing popularity of this novel. Whether it is science fiction or rather speculative fiction is a critical concern but does not affect the reader's enjoyment. This novel belongs in a special place along with Wells other great early science fiction works. And if you really enjoy this story the dark side of man is even more evident in his earlier Darwinian arabesque, The Island of Dr. Moreau.
  • (4/5)
    The Invisible Man was a fun read. Clever, with a slightly sci-fi bend, but also some complex character development. The character of the invisible man is so evil and unfeeling, that you end up rooting for everyone who wants to destory him.
  • (4/5)
    I've actually never read this before, and was surprised both by how detailed the science of the transformation was (though I probably shouldn't have been, because this era was big on the science in science fiction) and how unsympathetic the protagonist was. Enjoyed very much!
  • (5/5)
    I must say that I've never read The Invisible Man before in my life; shame on me.

    Now, while I've seen movies about The Invisible Man, I actually never read the original story by H.G.Wells. While I had a glimpse of The Island of Doctor Moreau (which I also never read, double shame on me) in a Japanese B-movie I saw when I was a child (Latitude Zero — a crazy but entertaining movie nonetheless, if you like the genre,) Wells' story about The Invisible Man I've never contemplated.

    Contrary to the ultra-modernistic story told in The Island Of Doctor Moreau (which could easily be, save for wording, a 60's story — and I guess Planet of the Apes is greatly indebted to it,) The Invisible Man is a striking story told in a particular soft British tone I loved since its very beginning.

    While (third time in a row I use this word!) I'm quite sure Wells contributed to the birth and to the development of the classical British cozy mystery of which Agatha Christie will be one of the greatest champions (The Invisible Man is a British cozy mystery, included with a case of Burglary At The Vicarage — does it ring some bell?) But I think many other authors might have drawn some of their inspiration from Wells' work, for instance from The Invisible Man.

    Guess who?

    I don't know how many of you are familiar with the Lord of the Rings written trilogy (I once made a ritual of reading it anew every year, come the first September rains — this was some years ago, though,) but some of you who have read Tolkien's trilogy, after you will have also read your Wells assignment, might have the same feeling I had.

    At first I didn't realize, but then I couldn't help noticing that the description of the arrival of the stranger who is The Invisible Man at the Inn reminded me of one famous character from the trilogy.

    "... for he was smoking a pipe, and all the time that she was in the room he never loosened the silk muffler he had wrapped round the lower part of his face to put the mouthpiece to his lips ... He sat in the corner with his back to the window-blind and spoke now, having eaten and drunk and being comfortably warmed through, with less aggressive brevity than before. The reflection of the fire lent a kind of red animation to his big spectacles [in the Fellowship Of The Ring it's the gleam in Strider's eyes] they had lacked hitherto."

    "The visitor remained in the parlour until four o’clock, without giving the ghost of an excuse for an intrusion. For the most part he was quite still during that time; it would seem he sat in the growing darkness smoking in the firelight “perhaps dozing."
    Well, I've got the clear image that this was exactly Aragorn, son of Arathorn, also known as Strider by the Bree people. Now, if you remember, this scene happens in Bree, at the Prancing Pony (more on this later.)

    Now, after The Invisible Man runs out of money, in Wells' story, he steals some at the Vicarage and in the ensuing commotion he causes at the Inn, in the attempt of running from the suspicions he's risen, he reveals his nature of invisible man. That commotion will be much discussed later on by the Iping folks. That week, a village festival is underway at Iping — Whit's Monday. If you read the description of the people at the festival, and of their mood, I think you might have the feeling that there's a bit of the atmosphere Tolkien uses in the aftermath of his Bilbo's Party:

    "...After the first gusty panic had spent itself Iping became argumentative. Scepticism suddenly reared its head—rather nervous scepticism, not at all assured of its back, but scepticism nevertheless. It is so much easier not to believe in an invisible man; and those who had actually seen him dissolve into air, or felt the strength of his arm, could be counted on the fingers of two hands. And of these witnesses Mr. Wadgers was presently missing, having retired impregnably behind the bolts and bars of his own house, and Jaffers was lying stunned in the parlour of the “Coach and Horses.” [more on this name later on] Great and strange ideas transcending experience often have less effect upon men and women than smaller, more tangible considerations. Iping was gay with bunting, and everybody was in gala dress. Whit Monday had been looked forward to for a month or more. By the afternoon even those who believed in the Unseen were beginning to resume their little amusements in a tentative fashion, on the supposition that he had quite gone away, and with the sceptics he was already a jest. But people, sceptics and believers alike, were remarkably sociable all that day. Haysman’s meadow was gay with a tent, in which Mrs. Bunting and other ladies were preparing tea, while, without, the Sunday-school children ran races and played games under the noisy guidance of the curate and the Misses Cuss and Sackbut [!!!] No doubt there was a slight uneasiness in the air, but people for the most part had the sense to conceal whatever imaginative qualms they experienced. On the village green an inclined strong, down which, clinging the while to a pulley-swung handle, one could be hurled violently against a sack at the other end, came in for considerable favour among the adolescent, as also did the swings and the cocoanut shies. There was also promenading, and the steam organ attached to a small roundabout filled the air with a pungent flavour of oil and with equally pungent music. Members of the club, who had attended church in the morning, were splendid in badges of pink and green, and some of the gayer-minded had also adorned their bowler hats with brilliant-coloured favours of ribbon. Old Fletcher, whose conceptions of holiday-making were severe, was visible through the jasmine about his window or through the open door (whichever way you chose to look), poised delicately on a plank supported on two chairs, and whitewashing the ceiling of his front room."

    Now, all these people discuss the matter in another Inn, by the name of "Coach and Horses." Does it ring another bell? How far is "Coach and Horses" from "Prancing Pony?"

    It is at the Prancing Pony, where Frodo wears for the first time the One Ring and becomes invisible, causing as much commotion as his uncle Bilbo did at his one hundred and eleventh birthday at Bags End.

    I shall also add we have a specific use of a particular common room, which is found in both Wells' and Tolkien's inns, the parlor. I think the use of the parlor is strange in a mystery story. Both Frodo and The Invisible Man have the same relationship regarding the parlor -- because of the nature of both that man's and that hobbit's business, they should keep miles away from the next common room; instead, the parlor is used in both stories as a device to introduce a major change in the plot: The Invisible Man is (not) seen, so he must run and hide, the Ringwraiths are alerted to Frodo's presence.

    I think there's enough here to raise more than a doubt that Tolkien might have remembered some passages from Wells' interesting book.

    I'm halfway reading The Invisible Man, but these resemblances were so remarkable I had to put them down somewhere.
  • (3/5)
    3.5 stars A man who doesn't want to take off his clothes (hat, jacket, etc.) arrives at a hotel in a town and people wonder what he is all about, as his entire face and body are completely covered up.It was good. I am always iffy with writing styles of “classic” literature, but I was fine with this one. It was short, so quick to read. There was lots of action at the end. I'd be willing to try something else by him.
  • (4/5)
    This probably would have worked better as a short story given that there are no major sympathetic characters. But still, Wells' exploration of egomania and the practical aspects of invisibility are captivating enough that the 200-odd pages go just as fast. The climax is as taut and suspenseful as anything out of Grisham or King. And even if the writing is sometimes stilted and the action handled clumsily, the book is well worth the read and has undoubtably earned its status as a classic.
  • (4/5)
    A very good story that I wish was a little reversed in its order; the latter half with its personal retelling of the Invisible Man's origins was most excellent, and I sort of wish the whole tale was told by its invisible participant. The ending was also splendidly vivid. Definitely worth a look if you are interested in the early goings of science fiction, or just want a solid tale with some tension.
  • (2/5)
    In all honestly, I would have expected an Scientist to be capable of performing this thing called "critical thinking" but reading this book, I know I expected to much.
  • (3/5)
    An intricate work, with several twists and turns. Certainly engaging on the question of human psychology, specifically on the potential corruption that the power of invisibility might bestow upon a man, but overall, a less compelling story than others of H. G. Wells' works. Perhaps this was due to my increasing distaste for the Invisible Man (the character) as time went on, and the final twist in the tale came too late to win me back fully.

    Even so, a good read, and a classic. Well worth the time spent.
  • (4/5)
    About noon he suddenly opened his parlour door and stood glaring fixedly at the three or four people in the bar. "Mrs. Hall," he said. Somebody went sheepishly and called for Mrs. Hall.Mrs. Hall appeared after an interval, a little short of breath, but all the fiercer for that. Hall was still out. She had deliberated over this scene, and she came holding a little tray with an unsettled bill upon it. "Is it your bill you're wanting, sir?" she said."Why wasn't my breakfast laid? Why haven't you prepared my meals and answered my bell? Do you think I live without eating?""Why isn't my bill paid?" said Mrs. Hall. "That's what I want to know.""I told you three days ago I was awaiting a remittance -- ""I told you two days ago I wasn't going to await no remittances. You can't grumble if your breakfast waits a bit, if my bill's been waiting these five days, can you?"The stranger swore briefly but vividly."Nar, nar!" from the bar."And I'd thank you kindly, sir, if you'd keep your swearing to yourself, sir," said Mrs. Hall.The stranger stood looking more like an angry diving-helmet than ever. It was universally felt in the bar that Mrs. Hall had the better of him. His next words showed as much."Look here, my good woman -- " he began."Don't 'good woman' me," said Mrs. Hall."I've told you my remittance hasn't come -- ""Remittance indeed!" said Mrs. Hall.Still, I daresay in my pocket -- ""You told me two days ago that you hadn't anything but a sovereign's worth of silver upon you.""Well, I've found some more -- ""Ul-lo!" from the bar."I wonder where you found it," said Mrs. Hall.That seemed to annoy the stranger very much. He stamped his foot. "What do you mean?" he said.The reader realises one of the disadvantages of invisibility well before Griffin spells it out, as he keeps sniffing, coughing and sneezing due to catching cold from going about naked in winter. Although Griffin thought that invisibility would make him invincible and invulnerable, it turns out to be more of a curse, but he is such a nasty piece of work that I felt no sympathy for him at all.I really like the structure of the story, which begins when Griffin is already invisible, and gradually fills in the backstory as the book progresses.
  • (2/5)
    This story may have been ground-breaking in its time, but in 2011 it just seems trite. A man makes himself invisible and then goes on a crime wave. There are some interesting philosophical ideas about visibility being one of the keys of keeping civilization working, and that's why I gave it two stars. The big reveal at the end of the book that the invisible man is an albino and thus was hiding from the world doesn't have the intended shock value.
  • (5/5)
    The Tragedy of the Invisible Man whose discovery should have gone into top ranking Research Institutions but all his genius is lost along the way.
    The Invisible Man Griffin is an academic who discovers the secret of becoming invisible, this happens and he is able to use it, but alas still struggles with the same struggles he had when he was not invisible, like rejection, loneliness, isolation, this he turns into a Reign of Terror of The Invisible Man on the Village where he lives because DEATH is the only weapon left that has any effect. The Death Weapon turns back on him and in the closing moments the Invisible Man is himself felled and his invisible secrets remain in perpetuity only to be discovered upon the deaths of visible humans.
  • (3/5)
    I read The War of the Worlds a long time ago and I don't think I've really read any of Wells' other books until now, despite my intentions. I'm glad I finally got round to it. The Invisible Man isn't so much a story in some ways as an exploration of an idea -- not much happens, really: a man finds out how to make himself invisible but finds it much less convenient than expected, goes on a crime rampage, and is eventually killed. The main character is despicable and thoroughly unlikeable, which does the book no favours as a leisure read, but it's an interesting exploration of the idea. Though, of course, the 'scientific' explanation is laughable from a modern reader's perspective.

    For the little that happens it's quite long and unrewarding, but considering Wells' influence on the genre, it's interesting in that way, too.