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The Island Of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells

The Island Of Doctor Moreau (original 1896; edition 2010)

by H.G. Wells

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4,4931211,084 (3.63)1 / 349
Title:The Island Of Doctor Moreau
Authors:H.G. Wells
Info:Gollancz (2010), Hardcover
Collections:Your library
Tags:genre: science fiction, acquired in 2011, @amazon.co.uk, S.F. Masterworks, read in 2012

Work details

The Island of Dr. Moreau by H. G. Wells (1896)

  1. 90
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    The Invention of Morel by Adolfo Bioy Casares (chrisharpe)
    chrisharpe: Bioy Casares uses "The Island of Doctor Moreau" as a model for his own "The Invention of Morel", also set on a island, but a much stranger one...
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English (115)  Danish (2)  Spanish (2)  Dutch (1)  French (1)  English (121)
Showing 1-5 of 115 (next | show all)
What a creepy little book. I liked it very much. But I just about freaked when a rabbit ran in front of me yesterday and my co-workers look awfully strange this morning. ( )
  laurenbufferd | Nov 14, 2016 |
'What could it all mean? A locked enclosure on a lonely island, a notorious vivisector, and these crippled and distorted men?' This is the actual plot without any details. The details make this a very disturbing story. I forgot just how disturbing.
It is interesting how this was an adventure when I first read it. Not a happy one, but still an adventure before anything else. Now, it is a horror story.

However you choose to see it, it will still be a horrifying account of Prendick's stay on the island.
The strongest and, of course, the most disturbing part of the story is Moreau's explanation of his work. The fact that he talks about it as if pain and suffering don't matter, makes it even worse. Combine that with the sounds of a tortured animal day after day and you'll get it. 'This time I will burn out all the animal.' I felt sorry for most of his subjects, but there is something simply disgusting about pigs and hyenas that sickened me every time they appeared. ( )
  Aneris | Oct 31, 2016 |
I really don't know why I keep thinking that Wells' stories aren't any good. Before much reading time had passed I was talking to the Spouse about how much more plausible and realistic the story was than I thought it was going to be. And also, his structure is good, how he brings the reader in, how information is revealed, how our narrator changes his opinion as he understands more. The story never went where I expected it to, either.

Who anticipates being surprised by a hundred year old story that's been adapted to film I don't know how many times? An interesting read, entertaining, but also, one that doesn't raise issues and try to pass off easy answers.

Personal copy. ( )
  Kaethe | Oct 16, 2016 |
In it's entirety, The Island of Dr. Moreau definitely kept my interest. But I don't think I would have rated it as highly as I have if it weren't for the last chapter (CH. 22: The Man Alone). I just fell for how aptly Wells was able to capture the results of Prendick's "adventure." Also, the very basis for the story, is infinitely intriguing. What really makes these 'beasts' monsters? The experiments, the pain, or the simple fact of the yoke of humanity being cast upon them? And, depending on your perspective, who is the real monster? The animalistic traits of the creations or the person trying so grotesquely to suppress/change them? As we see with Prendick, it's a bit more relative in a moment of human peril than most of us would tend to think. His monsters are formed by what's unknown to what seems the most dangerous at present. But the idea of monsters isn't extinguished in the escaping, they simply live on in new ways. ( )
  lamotamant | Sep 22, 2016 |
Audiobook performed by Robin Lawson

This classic is set on a remote island somewhere in the South Pacific. The island is inhabited by Dr Moreau, a “mad” scientist bent on experimenting with the human / animal form, his assistant Montgomery, the stranded traveler Edward Prendick (who is our narrator), and a variety of strange creatures.

I remember a commercial in the 1960s or ‘70s with the tag line “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature!” I cannot think of a more succinct way to describe the basic theme of this book. And yet, it is so much more – a strong, philosophical and ethical argument both for and against vivisection and experimentation. A moral tale of one man’s descent as a result of his ego, and how he is able to draw others into his twisted way of thinking.

And yet, Wells clearly points out that Nature will have her way; that despite man’s meddling, Nature will win out. The journey on which Wells takes the reader to arrive at this conclusion is twisted, compelling, dark, and horrific. The tension is lessened by the story’s premise – a telling of what happened by the only survivor. Wells used a similar device in The Time Machine. Despite this, however, there is still considerable suspense.

I was struck by some of the descriptions of procedures – at least one of which I know is currently performed by plastic surgeons specializing in facial reconstruction. In fact, I read such an operative report just a week before picking up this book!

Robin Lawson does a fine job performing the audiobook. He has good pacing, and gives life to Edward Prendick’s telling of the story. ( )
  BookConcierge | Sep 2, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (46 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Wells, H. G.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Aldiss, Brian WilsonAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Atwood, MargaretIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
De Michele, RossanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kent, JonathanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kindt, AnnemarieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McLean, StevenNotessecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Parrinder, PatrickEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"I do not propose to add anything to what has already been written concerning the loss of the Lady Vain."
Das Schreien klang draußen noch lauter. Es war, als hätte aller Schmerz der Welt eine Stimme gefunden. Und doch - hätte ich gewußt, daß im Nebenzimmer solcher Schmerz zugefügt wurde, und wäre er stumm ertragen worden, ich glaube - so habe ich mir seither gedacht -, ich hätte es ganz gut aushalten können. Erst, wenn das Leiden Ausdruck findet und unsere Nerven erbeben macht, quält uns das Mitleid.
[Kapitel 8, letzter Absatz - S. 41 in der Ausgabe Das Neue Berlin 1988]
All diese Geschöpfe trugen trotz ihrer menschlichen Form und trotz der Andeutung von Kleidung in sich, in ihre Bewegungen, in den Ausdruck ihrer Gesichter, in ihr ganzes Wesen hinein verwoben, das unverkennbare Zeichen eines Tiers ...
[Kapitel 9, 15. Absatz - S. 45 in der Ausgabe Das Neue Berlin 1988]
Aber, wie gesagt, ich war zu aufgeregt und - das ist wahr, wenn auch jemand, der die Gefahr nie gekannt hat, vielleicht nicht daran glaubt - zu verzweifelt, um zu sterben.
[Kapitel 13, 1. Absatz - S. 68 in der Ausgabe Das Neue Berlin 1988]
"Bis auf diesen Tag hab' ich mich um die Ethik der Angelegenheit noch nie bekümmert. Das Studium der Natur macht den Menschen schließlich so gewissenlos, wie die Natur selbst ist."
[Zitat Dr. Moreau in Kapitel 14, 28. Absatz - S. 79 in der Ausgabe Das Neue Berlin 1988]
Vorher waren sie Tiere gewesen; ihre Instinkte waren ihrer Umgebung angepaßt, und sie selbst so glücklich, wie lebendige Wesen nur sein können. Jetzt stolperten sie in den Fesseln der Menschlichkeit dahin, lebten in einer Angst, die niemals starb, von einem Gesetz gequält, das sie nicht verstanden; ihre halbmenschliche Existenz begann in Qualen, war ein einziger langer, innerer Kampf, eine einzige lange Furcht vor Moreau - und wozu? Die Nutzlosigkeit regte mich auf.
[Kapitel 17, drittletzter Absatz - S. 102 in der Ausgabe Das Neue Berlin 1988]
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Haiku summary
Doctor Moreau
made animals human
but this goes wrong

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553214322, Mass Market Paperback)

A shipwreck in the South Seas, a palm-tree paradise where a mad doctor conducts vile experiments, animals that become human and then "beastly" in ways they never were before--it's the stuff of high adventure. It's also a parable about Darwinian theory, a social satire in the vein of Jonathan Swift (Gulliver's Travels), and a bloody tale of horror. Or, as H. G. Wells himself wrote about this story, "The Island of Dr. Moreau is an exercise in youthful blasphemy. Now and then, though I rarely admit it, the universe projects itself towards me in a hideous grimace. It grimaced that time, and I did my best to express my vision of the aimless torture in creation." This colorful tale by the author of The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, and The War of the Worlds lit a firestorm of controversy at the time of its publication in 1896.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:43 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

Following a shipwreck, a young naturalist finds himself on an island run by a mad scientist intent on creating a strain of beast men

(summary from another edition)

» see all 19 descriptions

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Average: (3.63)
1 19
1.5 2
2 72
2.5 21
3 319
3.5 116
4 397
4.5 25
5 174


19 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

3 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 014144102X, 0141029153, 0141389397

Tantor Media

2 editions of this book were published by Tantor Media.

Editions: 1400100534, 1400111145

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An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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