H. G. Wells Biography

The youngest of four children, Herbert Wells (he was usually called Bertie) was born into a hard-working but not very well off family in the south London suburb of Bromley. When he was eighteen he was accepted as a student at London’s best science college, where he learned all about biology and evolution from the famous teacher T. H. Huxley.

In 1887 he became a science teacher, and published his first book, A Textbook of Biology, in 1893. His fertile imagination was hard at work on some of the most exciting scientific developments of the day, and in 1895 he completed The Time Machine, followed the next year by The Invisible Man.

Meanwhile the scientist Percival Lowell was observing what he took to be artificially created canals on the surface of Mars, a theory that captured the public imagination of the time. Wells wondered what it would be like if there were indeed life on Mars, technologically advanced, and hostile. In 1898 he wrote The War of the Worlds, creating one of the most powerful science fiction stories ever written.