Jules Verne - The Father of Science Fiction

 

Jules Verne (18281905) was a French author who pioneered the science-fiction genre. He is best known for novels such as Journey To The Center Of The Earth (1864), Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea (1870), and Around the World in Eighty Days (1873). Verne wrote about space, air, and underwater travel before air travel and practical submarines were invented, and before practical means of space travel had been devised. He is the third most translated author in the world, according to Index Translationum. Some of his books have been made into films. Verne is often popularly referred to as the "Father of Science Fiction".

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From LibriVox:

1.  Edgar Allan Poe’s  Arthur Pym   (Listen to this first before you go to "Antarctic Mystery" below) - The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket is Edgar Allan Poe’s only complete novel, published in 1838.
The work relates the tale of the young Arthur Gordon Pym who stows away aboard a whaling ship called Grampus. Various adventures and mis-adventures befall Pym including shipwreck, mutiny and cannibalism. The story starts out as a fairly conventional adventure at sea, but it becomes increasingly strange and hard to classify in later chapters, involving religious symbolism and the Hollow Earth.

2.  Antarctic Mystery   (Sequel to Edgar Allan Poe’s Arthur Pym)  This book is also know as "Spinx of the Ice Fields" - Edgar Allan Poe’s telling of Arthur Pym’s narrative is shown to be true as events come together that bring out clues that help Captain Len Guy trace the fate of his brother’s ship the Jane; the very ship that Arthur Pym was on board at the time of his disappearance. Through the efforts of Mr. Joerling, the crew of the Halbrane is enticed to make the trip to Antarctica to search for any survivors of the Jane.
3.  Around the World in Eighty Days - First published in 1873. In the story, Phileas Fogg of London and his newly-employed French valet Passepartout attempt to circumnavigate the world in 80 days on a £20,000 wager set by his friends at the Reform Club.
    4.  From the Earth to the Moon - From the Earth to the Moon is a humorous science fantasy story written in 1865 by Jules Verne and is one of the earliest entries in that genre. It tells the story of three well-to-do members of a post-American Civil War gun club who build an enormous sky-facing columbiad and ride a spaceship fired from it to the moon.
      5.  Round the Moon  (Sequel to "From the Earth to the Moon") - Around the Moon, Jules Verne’s sequel to From the Earth to the Moon, is a science fiction novel continuing the trip to the moon which left the reader in suspense after the previous novel. It was later combined with From the Earth to the Moon to create A Trip to the Moon and Around It.
      6.  The Fur Country or Seventy Degrees North Latitude - In 1859, officers of the Hudson’s Bay Company are given the mission to found a fort at 70 degrees north of the polar circle. At some point, an earthquake occurs, and from then on, laws of physics seem altered (a total eclipse happens to be only partial; tides are not perceived anymore). They eventually realise that they are not where they are supposed to be
        7.  A Journey to the Interior of the Earth - A 1864 science fiction novel by Jules Verne (published in the original French as Voyage au centre de la Terre). The story involves a professor who leads his nephew and hired guide down a volcano in Iceland to the “center of the Earth”. They encounter many adventures, including prehistoric animals and natural hazards, eventually coming to the surface again in southern Italy. 
          8.  Mysterious Island - The book details the escape from Civil War-era Richmond, Virginia, of five Northern men who dared to go aloft in a balloon in the midst of a hurricane. Deposited on a lonely island in the Pacific, they make do with Yankee ingenuity where Chance has left them nothing.
            9.  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea - The novel is about Captain Nemo, The Nautilus, and the mysterious depths of the ocean. 
            10.  In Search of the Castaways or Children of Captain Grant (In non-English speaking countries this is the most popular Jules Verne's book) - The book tells the story of the quest for Captain Grant of the Britannia. After finding a bottle cast into the ocean by the captain himself after the Britannia is shipwrecked, Lord and Lady Glenarvan of Scotland decide to launch a rescue expedition. The main difficulty is that the coordinates of the wreckage are mostly erased, and only the latitude (37 degrees) is known.
            11.  Master of the World  (a sequel to an earlier Verne novel, “Robur the Conqueror”) - Set in a period when gasoline engines were in their infancy and automobiles were rare, and when even Chief Inspectors had to engage a carriage and horses to move about, the appearance of a vehicle that can move at astounding speeds on land, on water – and as later revealed, underwater and through the air – marks a technological advance far beyond the reach of nations.
            12.  Dick Sands - The Boy Captain - Dick Sands, a youth of fifteen, must assume command of a ship after the disappearance of its captain. Nature’s forces combined with evil doings of men lead him and his companions to many dangerous adventures on sea and in Central Africa. 
            13.  Eight Hundred Leagues on the Amazon - First published in 1881, Eight Hundred Leagues on the Amazon is an adventure novel in two parts by Jules Verne, having a basis in codes and cryptography. Unlike many of his other stories, it is not a work of science fiction. Rather, it describes a voyage down the Amazon River on a large raft, or jangada). Many aspects of the raft, scenery, and journey are described in detail. 
            14.  Five Weeks in a Balloon - Join three intrepid explorers as they seek to cross and explore the continent of Africa from Indian Ocean to Atlantic Ocean, except they’re doing it by hot air balloon. Scholar and scientist Samuel Ferguson, his manservant Joe, and his friend Richard “Dick” Kennedy engage in this mighty scientific feat, as they face danger after danger, enjoy adventure after adventure, and experience the literal highs and lows of Africa from the view of a hot air balloon.
            15.  Michael Strogoff This is the account of the perilous mission of Michael Strogoff, courier for Czar Alexander II, who is sent from Moscow to the besieged city of Irkutsk, where the governor, brother of the Czar, has taken his last stand against a Tartar rebellion led by the fearsome Feofar-Khan. When telegraph lines are cut between the Russian Far East and the mainland, Strogoff must make his way through hostile territory to warn the governor of the return of the traitor Ivan Ogareff, a disgraced former officer who seeks vengeance against the Tsar’s family by the destruction of Irkutsk.
            16.  Blockade Runners - Writing at the end of the American Civil War, Verne weaves this story of a Scottish merchant who, in desperation at the interruption of the flow of Southern cotton due to the Union blockade, determines to build his own fast ship and run guns to the Confederates in exchange for the cotton piling up unsold on their wharves. His simple plan becomes complicated by two passengers who board his new ship under false pretenses in order to carry out a rescue mission, one which Capt. Playfair adopts as his own cause. This is going make the Rebels in Charleston rather unhappy with him.
            17.  Doctor Ox’s Experiment - Doctor Ox has offered to light a Flemish town with a new gas, but actually has other plans in place.
            18.  The Underground City or The Child of the Cavern - Mining engineer James Starr finds mine overman Simon Ford and his family living in a cottage deep inside the mine; he is astonished to find that Ford has made a discovery of the presence of a large vein of coal. 
              19.  Topsy Turvy  -  Topsy Turvy translation was first published in 1890. We meet Barbicane and J.T. Maston from “Earth to the Moon” who now give us their own approach to the topic of “global warming”. Although they are searching for coal and not oil, readers will find that the auction of the Arctic energy reserves has a definite 21st century ring. 
              20.  Facing the Flag - Like The Begum's Millions, which Verne published in 1879, it has the theme of France and the entire world threatened by a super-weapon (what would now be called a weapon of mass destruction) with the threat finally overcome through the force of French patriotism.
              21.  Off On A Comet - The story starts with a comet that touches the Earth in its flight and collects a few small chunks of it. Some forty people of various nations and ages are condemned to a two-year-long journey on the comet. They form a mini-society and cope with the hostile environment of the comet (mostly the cold). The size of the 'comet' is about 2300 kilometers in diameter - far larger than any comet or asteroid that actually exists.
              22.  The Tribulations of a Chinaman - The rich Kin-Fo loses his fortune and decides to die, but not before experiencing some strong emotions. He asks his friend Wang to kill him before a given date. Everything changes when Kin-Fo discovers he is not poor after all and he sets on a journey around China, trying to find his friend to cancel their deal.
              23.  Celebrated Travels and Travelers -  Vol 1 - Celebrated travels and travelers" tells the story of geographical discovery in the same well written and precise manner we are used to finding in Verne’s fiction books. This book is divided into 3 volumes. This is the first volume, named the "Exploration of the World" and it covers the period in the World's history of exploration from B.C. 505 to the close of the 17th century. The second and third volumes are respectively entitled "The great navigators of the 18th century" and "The great navigators of the 19th century". 

              24.  The Adventures of Captain Hatteras, Part 1: The English at the North Pole - The novel, set in 1861, describes adventures of British expedition led by Captain John Hatteras to the North Pole. Hatteras is convinced that the sea around the pole is not frozen and his obsession is to reach the place no matter what. Mutiny by the crew results in destruction of their ship but Hatteras, with a few men, continues on the expedition. 

              25.  The Adventures of Captain Hatteras, Part 2: The Field of Ice - The novel, set in 1861, describes adventures of British expedition led by Captain John Hatteras to the North Pole. Hatteras is convinced that the sea around the pole is not frozen and his obsession is to reach the place no matter what. Mutiny by the crew results in destruction of their ship but Hatteras, with a few men, continues on the expedition.

              26.  From the Earth to the Moon (Version 2)  - From the Earth to the Moon (French: De la Terre à la Lune) is a humorous science fantasy story written in 1865 by Jules Verne and is one of the earliest entries in that genre. It tells the story of three well-to-do members of a post-American Civil War gun club who build an enormous sky-facing columbiad and ride a spaceship fired from it to the moon. 

              27.  Celebrated Travels and Travellers, vol. 3 - This volume, entitled "The great explorers of the 19th century", forms the third of three volumes under the general title of "Celebrated travels and travellers".  
              Volume three comprehends:
              "The dawn of a century of discovery" (part I, chap. I), "The exploration and colonization of Africa" (part I, chap. II), "The oriental scientific movement and American discoveries" (part I, chap. III), "Voyages round the world, and Polar expeditions" (part II, chap. I), "French circumnavigators" (part II, chap. II), "Polar expeditions" (part II, chap. III, part I) and "The North Pole" (part II, chap. III, part II)

              28. Abandoned - Explorers in a hot-air balloon land on an island, figuring that they must be the only inhabitants. However, they discover a bullet inside a wounded animal--one which must have been fired within the previous three months. The men propose to build a canoe so they can survey the island in search of other human life.

              29. The Steam HouseThis adventure takes place in India with a steam-powered elephant! Maucler, Captain Hood, Banks, and Colonel Munro set out for a pleasure trip across India in their train pulled by Behemoth, their mechanical elephant, but soon realize that they are in the midst of a plot by the Colonel's archenemy, Nana Sahib, to get vengeance for past wrongs and seize control of India once and for all. Will they be able to escape from a hidden assassin and uncover a secret hidden for decades in time to stop Nana Sahib?

               

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               From the Dramatization of Jules Verne's' "Mercury Theatre on the Air":

              1. Around the World in 80 Days

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