The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells - Artist Edition
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ESTIMATED PUBLICATION: Fall 2021
This year marks the 125th anniversary of the first publication of The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells; a classic work of early science fiction that remains one of the author’s most disturbing and unforgettable novels. When Edward Prendick is rescued from a shipwreck, he is left on a nearby island and soon discovers the home of the depraved Doctor Moreau, a mad scientist conducting unspeakable animal experiments with hideous, human-like results.
While gene-splicing and bioengineering are common practices today, Wells’s haunting vision raised ethical questions more than a century before our time. Originally published in 1896, Wells’s story reflects the scientific controversies disrupting the societal norm in the late 1800s, including increased opposition to animal vivisection and growing discussion of Darwinism and the degeneration of the human race.
With The Island of Doctor Moreau published just one year after his first novel, The Time Machine, H.G. Wells was creating new worlds for which he would become known as one of the founding fathers of the science fiction genre. Moreau is the earliest example of what would become a popular science fiction motif called “uplift,” in which a more advanced race interferes with the evolution of the animal species to bring the latter to a higher level of intelligence.
With its themes of cruelty, moral responsibility, and man’s interference with nature, The Island of Doctor Moreau is one of Wells’s most important and thought-provoking explorations on what makes us human.
- 6” x 9” trim size.
- 240 Pages.
- Limited to 1000 copies.
- Full cloth, smyth-sewn binding.
- Two-hits foil stamping.
- Six full color illustrations by Benz and Chang.
- Dust jacket featuring wraparound artwork by Benz and Chang (the only edition featuring the dust jacket).
- New exclusive foreword by Megan Shepherd.
- Afterword by Adam Roberts.
- Signed by Benz and Chang.
- Housed in an embossed paper covered slipcase.
- Bookmark with all pre-orders.
Includes Bonus Material
Appendix A: Wells Explains: Two Essays Relating to Moreau’s Argument.
H.G. Wells, The Province of Pain (1894)
H.G. Wells, The Limits of Individual Plasticity (1895)
Appendix B: ‘The Terrible Medusa Case’: An Historical Source for Prendick’s Shipwreck.
A narrative account of the infamous shipwreck Méduse (1818).
Reproduction of Théodore Géricault’s masterpiece painting The Raft of the Medusa (c.1819).
Appendix C: Wells’s First Draft of Moreau.
A study and excerpt from H.G. Wells’s original draft of Moreau.
Published editions may differ slightly from mockups and prototype designs.
Artwork © 2021 by Benz and Chang.
So, having owned and read all versions of this book I can say beyond a doubt this is the, as I would say, authoritative,and authentic rendering f H. G. Wells masterpiece. Bravo! Could not be happier with this book. Looking forward to the next volume I have purchased.
Excellent Suntup production as usual.
Beautiful edition and very interesting story.
“The Island of Doctor Moreau” is beautifully produced with its bright red binding, like fresh blood, its gold-stamped spine and cover titling, and its dark gray slip case. the pages are cleanly set in Monotype Bell, comfortably 12 on 15, with decorative, but not obtrusive, chapter heads of a geometric design that matches the title page border and center piece. The margins are generous, not overly so, with perhaps a little too much space in the back margin. At its size of 6.25 by 9.25 it fits the hand well and is a pleasure to read.
My only problem with the design of the book is the choice of illustrations. The story is dark and existentially horrifying and yet the figures that Benz and Chang gives us are calm, sometimes slightly comic, and willfully counter to the actual descriptions that Wells takes the time to suggest to us. The frontispiece depicts neither Moreau or his attendant Montgomery. The portraits of animals dressed in 19th century suits do nothing to indicate the painful lives of the beast-people. The dust jacket with its group portrait of various animal-headed figures in suits resembles a convocation of models for a Disney casting call rather than anything in the book. Perhaps the publisher’s intent was to be somewhat ironic, though that intention fails. Perhaps they thought that working against the text would give the book a modern feel. Having read the book for the first time after many years and seeing how the pictures in my head were belittled by the paintings, I can only think that somewhere Wells’s point was ignored. This was a chance for a great darkness to be remarked upon. For some reason that chance was missed.
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