Boekverslag : H.g. Wells - The Invisible Man
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The invisible man


'The Invisible Man' is written by Herbert George Wells. Wells was born in Bromley, United Kingdom, in 1866 and died in 1946. He was the son of a small shopkeeper. Wells left school at the age of 14 but four years later, he won a scholarship to the Normal School Of Science in South Kensington, where he studied under Thomas Henry Huxley. Another grant took him to London University, from which he graduated with a degree in biology in 1890. In 1893 he left teaching for writing. As a writer he had great influence.

By the time he was 30 years of age Wells had already embarked on his famous series of scientific romances, like 'The time machine' and 'War Of The Worlds'. With Jules Verne, he was the inventor of Science Fiction. He was a master of the comic novel ('Kipps: The Story Of A Simple Soul' and 'The History Of Mr. Polly').

H.G. Wells outlined his socialist and internationalist solutions to civilisation's ills in several books of analysis and speculation: 'Anticipations', 'A Modern Utopia' and 'The Shape Of Things To Come'. His outline of history is perhaps the best one-volume history of humankind ever compiled by a single author and was followed by a companion work: 'The Science Of Life'.

In 'Experiment In Autobiography' Wells tells the story of his life.


'The Invisible Man' was first published in 1897. It contains pages. The story takes place in Iping, England.

The story is told chronologically and near the end there is a flash-back.

'The Invisible Man' is a story of strange adventure (in the manner of Swift's 'Gulliver's Travels'). The main idea is an old one, going back to Herodotus (450 B.C.): 'What will a man do if he has the power to making himself invisible?'

Wells had, in early life especially, complete faith in the power of science. He believed, and had the power to make others believe, that science could provide the path to a perfect world. He knew, indeed, that no man could make himself invisible. But for long he believed that science, which had already done so much for his comfort and for the welfare of mankind, could do everything; and that books could cure wrong thinking. World War II reduced him to despair.


There are three main characters in 'The Invisible Man'.

#The Invisible Man (Griffin): He is a young men who just left College. He finds the possibility to make something invisible. He try's it with a cat and it works. After a time he hasn't got any money and the landlord was going hurt him. So then he made himself invisible. As an indivisible man he could steal as much he wanted.

#Mrs. Hall: She is the owner of the inn in Iping Village. She feels sorrow for the invisible man and wants to help him, but he refuses. After a time she can't stand the mystery anymore.

#Dr. Kemp: He is an old fellow student of the invisible man. He is also a man of science. But when the invisible man comes to him, he thinks he has gone completely mad and he wants to get rid off him. So the invisible man chases Dr. Kemp. But after a while the invisible man himself in chased by Kemp.


One evening a stranger arrives in the inn of Mrs. Hall. He acts very strange. The visitor is all covered up with clothes and bandages. Mrs. Hall thinks he has had a terrible accident and she wants that everybody leaves the stranger alone; But after a while she is getting suspicious herself.

In the village everybody is telling gossips about the stranger. Mr. Cuss, the doctor, was interested in the bandages and went to visit him. He was surprised to find that Mrs. Hall did not know her guest's name. Finally the stranger takes off his bandages and Mr. Cuss sees that he is in fact an invisible man.

A couple of days later the invisible man goes to steal some money in the vicarage and he doesn't pay his rent in the inn. A policeman and a lot of other people rush in the room of the invisible man. They take his clothes and bandages. The man escapes very violently and he wounds some people. He escapes to a near village. He is gone completely mad and wants to kill a lot of people.

First he goes to Dr. Kemp. Kemp is an old fellow student. He tells Kemp how he made himself invisible and the story behind it. Kemp try's to turn the invisible man in, but again he escapes. Now the man is extremely dangerous. The village is hunting him. His first victim will be Dr. Kemp. The invisible man is terrorising Kemp, but then he is shot. Everybody is hitting him and he dies. He becomes visible again.

Reading experience

I saw a very stupid movie 'Memoirs Of An Invisible Man' (1992), but I liked the fact that a man could make himself invisible very much. Finally I saw the original movie 'The Invisible Man' (1933) by the great director James Whale, who made some of the most intelligent and witty films of the horror genre. The film was fantastic and I wanted to read the book. Amazingly or not, it was right there on my bookshelf. I expected a great story, because the movie was fascinating. My expectation came true, the book is slightly different, but it was great.

The book can't be realistic because no human can make himself invisible. But it would be fun if it can be done. You can't compare it with other books, because this is an original scenario. There is also a book called 'Invisible Man' by Ralph Ellison, but that's about a black man who is invisible to white society.

The part in the book that most impressed me is where the invisible man himself is hunted. All the aspects of the book are successful. I would advise others to read the book, because they would have an amusing time.
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