Here is a story from 1898, yet forecasting so much that waited for us in the next century. Wells' capacity of imagination is immense. He sounds like a man describing a very detailed nightmare. What struck me so strongly was not his grasp of alien civilization, though this story is, of course, deeply influential. No, what I never realized having only seen film versions of this story, is the author's vivid and poignant description of all that follows the initial attack, as the narrator flees and subsequently fends for his life. It is in these chapters that War of the Worlds becomes most prescient, presaging the decades ahead that would wipe peace and civility off the map. In all, the story has more in common with the film The Pianist or Elie Wiesel's Night than any alien science fiction. This book looks ahead to a world war so annihilative and cruel that it could only be fought by man against other men. "With overwhelming force came the thought of myself, of my wife, and the old life of hope and tender helpfulness that had ceased for ever."