And particularly how Mr. Bert Smallways fared while it lasted. With Illustrations by A.C. Michael. London: George Bell and Sons, 1908. 2 pp undated ads. Original blue cloth decorated in gilt.
First Edition of this extraordinary tale of a Cockney cycle mechanic who is carried off by a drifting balloon and is then caught up in a surprise German air attack on New York City -- which in turn precipitates the collapse of civilization. Though this book typifies Wells's fantastic "fiction about the future" (and includes a remarkable forecast of aerial warfare), it is perhaps more noteworthy as one of his earliest warnings about "the German menace" -- a topic to which he would devote increased attention over the coming years.
This copy is in Currey's binding "A" (with lettering in gilt on both the front cover and the spine, and with no mounted color plate). This is a very good-plus copy (general minor rubbing at the edges, spine slightly faded); atypically, the original endpapers are intact. Wells Soc. 36; Hammond B11; Currey p. 526. Item #14622