Like much classic science fiction and fantasy writing, Jules Verne's novel From the Earth to the Moon seems comically anachronistic: a group of Civil War vets, who are still wistful about the glories... More > of battle, devise a giant space gun to blast a manned capsule to the moon. But for as old-timey as it seems, much of the author's speculation actually matches the realities of the Apollo program a hundred years later, such as the name of the gun, the Columbiad, and the location of the launch site in Florida. Who knows whether they named the rocket after the gun, but it's interesting to ponder.
More examples of how life imitates art, or how art predicts reality, can be gleaned from Verne's book From the Earth to the Moon. Witness people today who long for the good old days, such as the copper and leather fashions of the Steampunks. And secondly, how his book predicts the US Military Industrial Complex. Spooky!< Less
Perhaps we saw the 1950's movie with Kirk Douglas, or maybe we had the snot scared out of us on the Disney World ride as kids-regardless, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is indelibly etched into the... More > collective memory. The original by Jules Verne was published in 1869 when submarines where in their infancy: once again Verne predicts much of what will come technologically.The crew of an American ship sets off to investigate a giant sea monster, only to find it, fight it, and then realize it's a submarine. It's called the Nautilus, and was built by the mysterious Captain Nemo. Fortunately he lets the multinational crew live long enough to go exploring with him. Until, like many mad scientist types, he gets bored of his quarry and goes a bit nuts. One last thing: don't let the name 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea fool you. 20K leagues is over two and a half times the circumference of the Earth. The title refers to the total distance they traveled: 20,000 leagues. Enjoy!< Less
Journey to the Centre of the Earth is the classic 1864 science fiction novel by Jules Verne. It features German professor Von Hardwigg who is convinced that there are volcanic tubes going toward the... More > center of the planet. Hardwigg and his nephew travel with a guide named Hans through various epochs of geological time as they descend further into the earth, encountering strange monsters, beasts, and insects--all of which get older as they go deeper.
As Hollywood is wont to do, they made a movie out of Journey to the Center of the Earth, which is pretty lousy. The book is way better than the movie. So get down (lol) with professor Hardwigg as he explores the interior of the Earth.< Less
The book tells the adventures of five American prisoners of war on an uncharted island in the South Pacific. Begining in the American Civil War, as famine and death ravage the city of Richmond,... More > Virginia, five northern POWs decide to escape in a rather unusual way – by hijacking a balloon! This is only the beginning of their adventures...< Less
A novel about the fortunes of a mining community called Aberfoyle which is near Stirling, Scotland. Miner James Starr, after receiving a letter from an old friend, leaves for the Aberfoyle mine.... More > Although believed to be mined out a decade earlier, James Starr finds a mine overman, Simon Ford, along with his family living deep inside the mine. Simon Ford has found a large vein of coal in the mine but the characters must deal with mysterious and unexplainable happenings in and around the mine.< Less
The present romance, the second in the Mysterious Island triad, was originally issued in Paris with the title of L'Abandonné. Jules Verne's list of stories already ran then to some twenty... More > volumes—a number which has since grown to almost Dumasien proportions. L'Abandonné, like its two companion tales, ran its course as a serial through the Magasin Illustré of education and recreation, before its issue as a boy's story-book. Its success in both forms seems to have established a record in the race for popularity and a circulation in both the French and English fields of current literature.< Less
Pioneering science-fiction writer Jules Verne is the second most translated author of all time (after Agatha Christie.) This translation of his short story A Voyage in a Balloon first appeared in... More > Sartain's Union Magazine of Literature and Art in a May 1852 edition, making it the first of the French writer's stories to be published in English. As Verne writes in this story , "May this terrific recital, while it instructs those who read it, not discourage the explorers of the routes of air."< Less
Fans of classic adventure fiction will delight in Jules Verne's An Antarctic Mystery. The novel follows the journey of fictional explorer Pym, who also appeared in Edgar Allen Poe's The Narrative of... More > Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, through the eyes of an American explorer who is surveying the Kerguelen Islands.< Less