Bill Masen, bandages over his wounded eyes, misses the most spectacular meteorite shower England has ever seen. Removing his bandages the next morning, he finds masses of sightless people wandering the city. He soon meets Josella, another lucky person who has retained her sight, and together they leave the city, aware that the safe, familiar world they knew a mere 24 hours before is gone forever. But to survive in this post-apocalyptic world, one must survive the Triffids, strange plants that years before began appearing all over the world. The Triffids can grow to over seven feet tall, pull their roots from the ground to walk, and kill a man with one quick lash of their poisonous stingers. With society in shambles, they are now poised to prey on humankind. Wyndham chillingly anticipates bio-warfare and mass destruction, 50 years before their realization, in this prescient account of Cold War paranoia.
©1951 John Wyndham; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
“The best what-if sci-fi ever.” (Lee Child)
"Graeme Malcolm creates the atmosphere of a classic Twilight Zone or Chiller Theatre production.... Malcolm’s tone of steady perseverance contributes to the realism of the plot." (AudioFile)
This version is abridged. Not by the industry standard HUGE amount, but maybe as much as 25% of the writing has been taken out. It is as if the book were 'tightened up' by an editor who didn't realize how much brilliant social commentary was between the lines of Wyndham's digressions. The BBC has done an unabridged reading of this, as has (i think) Books On Tape. Both are better than this one by a long shot--and they are complete.
I recalled seeing the 1962 movie version as a teenager and had rather low expectation based on its typical monsters run amok plotline, But needing an easy read over vacation, I took a chance and was happily rewarded with well developed characters and situations. A scifi novel that holds up well even after all these years.
I have loved this story for a long time. It was great to hear an audio version. The message seems so appropriate today in a world of genetic engineering, space defense systems, biological warfare, and intentional introduction of invasive of foreign plant and animal species. Every time I hear tapping sticks, I wonder if a triffid has arrived at my door. The BBC did a wonderful television production in the mid-80s. The production values are quite simple compared to today's but it is very effective.
First, I thought it ended rather abruptly. I actually expected I was half way through the book when it ended. So that was somewhat disappointing that it was over. Nonetheless, I wouldn't have been disappointed if I hadn't been enjoying it so much. It's a really good book, full of all the concepts and situations I like in a good post-apocalyptic novel. It's realistic, exciting, and the narrative is practically prose. The writer is extraordinarily articulate and well-spoken. Quite the opposite of the some of the more recent post-apocalyptic/survivalist novels which sound like a how-to manual being read. Highly recommended. I just finished Earth Abides, and although the stories begin quite similarly, they diverge enough to be mutually enjoyable, even if you read them in succession. I should also say that the reader is excellent and perfectly matched to the content.
Yes. The world ending my a "zombie plague" is so popular, this shows the end of the world by a plague of man eating plants that move a lot like zombies.
When they find out the Triffids are turning the tables on humanity, and the girl finds her family and house over run.
A good exciting ending.
like zombie movies? You'll like this!
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (sci-fi) - This book was written in the early fifties and is very well done. It was probably quite unique and shocking in its time but not so much today in 2014. The story begins with a very unique premise -- a meteor shower, people who have become blind, the triffids. (They're huge plants that can walk and kill people with a stinger thingy). Shortly after I became acquainted with the characters and the situation, however, I began losing interest. The story basically becomes one of meandering the English countryside, trying to find food and shelter while avoiding triffids and disease.
PERFORMANCE - The narrator is male and has a British accent. He does a good job, though nothing special.
OVERALL - No sex, cursing or graphic violence. There is quite a bit of death and disease, but I didn't find it gross or depressing. Both men and women might enjoy this story, but it's definitely not for children. The book comes to a satisfactory conclusion but the door is left open for the story to continue. At the very end the narrator mentions another book which can be purchased if you want to continue the saga. The Day of the Triffids is highly rated and was nominated for an award within the past few years, so you might want to give it a try despite my comments.
A Sci Fi junkie who occasionally goes slumming to read other literature.
I like the easygoing style of the main character, and how we learn and experience the Triffids along with him as he struggles to survive. This will be a fun book to read again in a few years.
Graeme Malcolm did an OK job. I just consider his voice to be a little light and timid, especially during intense action scenes.
Bohemian Bon Vivant
Elevated above the killer plant aspect by the author's intelligent consideration and exploration of what various forms humanity might take given a cataclysmic accident like the overnight blinding of most of the world's populace -- from those who deal with the disaster in a military fashion, religious fashion, progressive fashion, and so on. It's a book that leaves one with much to ponder and consider long after the scary story elements that pull you in.
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
One thing that always bothers me in these books where there are Zombies, Aliens or Killer Plants invading the earth, why do these authors believe humans will sit by and do nothing. First we have these plants that kill and blind people and then eat them. According to this author we will make pets of them. It takes two years of these plants multiplying and ganging up to kill whole towns before somebody thinks we should start hunting them down.
I don't know about England, but in gun loving America these things would have become a National sport day one.
We also have these Meteors that blind people. The author does not seem to recognize that half of the world is in daylight while the other half is in dark. We are lead to believe the whole world is blinded in one night.
Then when most everyone is blinded, they start killing themselves. An eighteen year old beauty who is blind offers herself to a man if he will help take care of her. He is to proper for that, but he does help her take pills to kill her self. A young couple throws themselves out a window. Blind people are considered totally helpless.
The book is well written and there are some very good parts, it is just a little depressing on how down the author is on mankind.
I liked this book quite a bit. It was refreshing to return to reading classic Sci-Fi, where stories are written in a sparing yet provocative style. It allows the reader to think about the "What ifs" in a cataclysmic situation, yet without going into the excruciating detail that is the hallmark of modern fiction. This story is simple and straight-forward. I also liked that it was a more-or-less journalistic narrative, too - but not in the diary format...but more of an extended flashback; which made the "Could this really happen to us?" chilling implications all the more real. And by recounting the dire human (and inhuman) interactions that radiated out from the core catastrophe, it really allowed the reader to ponder, "How would I handle these situations?" Also, the audiobook version, to which I listened, was very well narrated by Graeme Malcolm - I enjoyed this production. I would read more by this author.
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