H. G. Wells, “The War of the Worlds”, 1898 was an alien-invasion, science fiction novel. Percival Lowell (1855-1916) was an astronomer who fueled speculation that there were “canals” on the planet Mars. Astronomer Lowell viewed the Mars surface through his telescope and concluded that “Martian canals” were engineering works of intelligent beings. H. G. Wells, ‘The War of the Worlds”, 1898 is an alien, invasion of Lowell-type, Martian “tripod” beings that have “heat-ray” weapons atop there heads.
The armies of Earthlings fight back; but,, the Martians are more advanced and are winning the “War of the Worlds” militarily. “Deus ex machina” plot device ends the story. The unexpected, saving event in a seeming hopeless war by Earthlings is that a “germ” harmless to humans kills all the Martian invaders. H. G. Wells, “The War of the Worlds”, 1898 was a believable fiction story, based on the belief in astronomer Percival Lowell’s telescopic observations. In 1938 H. G. Wells, “The War of the Worlds”, was a radio broadcast drama by Orson Wells which many listeners believed was actually an alien invasion.