The War of the Worlds


Read by LibriVox Volunteers

(4.4 stars; 1147 reviews)

H. G. Wells wrote The War of the Worlds in 1898, when there was much speculation about life on the planet Mars. The book is considered to be one of the first science fiction novels. In the story, an English gentleman narrates the events of a violent and fast paced Martian invasion.

The frightening images of people fleeing from gigantic tripod machines and the prospect of life under Martian rule have served as a bottomless well of inspiration for popular culture. The novel has served as a template for many derivative or inspired works, including comics, countless books, a TV series, several films, a bestselling musical, and the famous Orson Wells broadcast. Overall, The War of the Worlds has become an early milestone in and inspiration for the invasion genre.

The novel demonstrates Wells' typical pessimistic outlook on human nature and offers a good deal of criticism on society and people's ignorance and vanity. The War of the Worlds can be read as an indictment of European colonial actions around the globe at that time - with which the injustice of the Martian invasion can be compared. Wells has since been credited with predicting quite a number of technologies, such as laser-like rays, industrial robot-like machines, and chemical-warfare.
(Summary by Stephan Möbius and Annie Coleman)

Illustrations by Stephan Möbius
Book 1 - Chapter 1: Map of Surrey
Book 1 - Chapter 5: The Cylinder Opens - 1, The Cylinder Opens - 2
Book 1 - Chapter 11: In the Storm
Book 1 - Chapter 12: At the Window
Book 1 - Chapter 16: What Had Happened in Surrey
Book 1 - Chapter 17: The Exodus from London
Book 2 - Chapter 2: Under Foot (6 hr 43 min)

Chapters

The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 01 13:52 Read by Stephan Möbius
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 02 8:21 Read by Chris Goringe
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 03 6:51 Read by Peter Yearsley
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 04 6:19 Read by Joseph Morris
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 05 10:22 Read by Peter Yearsley
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 06 6:36 Read by Kara Shallenberg
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 07 10:09 Read by Kara Shallenberg
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 08 7:00 Read by Mike Shapiro
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 09 13:26 Read by Mike Shapiro
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 10 13:46 Read by Stephan Möbius
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 11 17:15 Read by Tony Gray
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 12 23:40 Read by Stephan Möbius
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 13 10:50 Read by Chris Goringe
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 14 23:55 Read by Stephan Möbius
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 15 19:01 Read by Kristin LeMoine
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 16 28:20 Read by Chip
The War of the Worlds - Book 1 - Chapter 17 22:53 Read by Chip
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 01 16:49 Read by Kathleen (Kathy) P. King
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 02 19:17 Read by Jean Crevier
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 03 13:11 Read by Stephan Möbius
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 04 9:44 Read by Jean Crevier
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 05 7:34 Read by Peter Yearsley
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 06 9:43 Read by Peter Yearsley
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 07 38:46 Read by Chip
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 08 23:02 Read by Kara Shallenberg
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 09 13:23 Read by Peter Yearsley
The War of the Worlds - Book 2 - Chapter 10 9:14 Read by Stephan Möbius

Reviews

Disappointed


(2.5 stars)

I was so looking forward to listen to this book since I found the book so interesting years ago. Normally you get into a rhythm with the person reading, not with this book, it made very difficult to relate to main character having different people reading each chapter. It was very disappointing.

Great book, good readers


(4.5 stars)

I enjoyed the detail H. G. Wells puts into this work. He paints a good picture for the reader. Some readers were more enthusiastic in their reading than others, but my attention didn't lapse even with the more monotone readers at the slower parts of the book.

it was a chilling listen. great for the heat😆


(5 stars)

I started listening to this one sunday when I had committed to cleaning the bathroom in its entirety. (classy sentence structure😎) but for reals I wanted to focus on getting the bathroom cleaned up and this helped focus and motivaite me because it was a very interesting listen. classics like this are pretty easy to dismiss as old and boring, but often times when I've read or listened to old favorites like this, I find they were popular for a good reason. There are several different ppl making the recordings for this but I didnt find it to be overly distracting and each narrator has a clear tone. so yeah I'd say its a good listen. recommended🖒

FANTASTIC


(5 stars)

I took Avid Readers advice and listened to this over several nights in bed in the dark. Yes, some of the readers were not as good as others but the entire book was fantastic. Will probably listen to it in the dark again when I have run out of other books to listen to. I think H.G. Wells would have loved this version.

Excellent Set of Readers


(5 stars)

Thoroughly enjoyed this book particularly, I feel, because of the variety of readers. Each reader having a distinct accent and often peculiar pronunciation (especially in the case of Stephen M. who is not a native English speaker, but who's accent adds an elegant touch, and a truly other-worldliness to his chapters) makes for a lively production of this awesome tale.

Oldie but Goodie book


(5 stars)

Having only seen the movies and heard about the radio program I thought I knew the story. I was mistaken. Incredible story based in old London and surrounding area which is nothing like the movies or radio program. Readers do a great job with different ones on just about every chapter. I highly recommend this book!

thank you everyone!!


(5 stars)

what a gift. i enjoyed all the readers. for me it felt like we were seeing and hearing the invasion from many different perspectives. this is what librivox is all about. thank you everyone. most surprising to me are scenes of enormous energy and pulse racing action, so long after it was first published.

Classic and Interesting


(5 stars)

H.G. Wells brings an unmatched combination of classic literary style with a science fiction plot. I love the mix of aliens with classic British storytelling. Ahead of his time with great imagery. Most readers did well and are understandable, a few slower parts but worth listening to the entire book.