Book: The Island of Doctor Moreau

The Island of Doctor Moreau


Strangely enough, this has been my favourite read from H.G. Wells so far. Set on an island far from prying eyes, it tells the story of a shipwrecked passenger and his short time on the island. There is plenty of “science”, which is a hallmark of Wells style. I guess that’s why he’s called the father of science fiction. I appreciate how he tries to ground his fiction in science, but there are times when it comes across as too forced. This novel in particular forces the science aspect down your throat, instead of working it gradually and integrating it well with the story. That portion of the story felt slightly disjointed, but other than that I loved the growing realization of the protagonist and how his actions in the beginning came to effect towards the end.

There’s plenty of horror and suspense, which the story managed to balance well. The pacing is really good, with just enough action to push the plot forward while still holding key information back and gradually releasing it to great effect. It’s a book that will make you feel very intensely the fear of the characters and might even stimulate the fight or flight response. At the same time, the story causes one to reflect on the parallels it draws between humans and animals. It also questions how far man should push the boundaries of science to play God.

I thought that it was interesting, albeit a bit more on the preachy side. The moral of the story is made really clear, which is something I’ve begun to realize is part of Wells’ style as well. I enjoyed it thoroughly and for now I think I’ll take a break from H.G, just to absorb what I’ve already read by him before searching for more of his books.


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