A MAN OF CONTRADICTIONS. A MAN OF PASSION. A MAN OF THE FUTURE.
Sequestered in his blitz-battered Regent's Park house in 1944, the ailing Herbert George Wells, 'H.G.' to his family and friends, looks back on a life crowded with incident, books, and women. Charting his unpromising start as a draper's assistant to his rapid rise to fame as a writer with a prophetic imagination, his immersion in socialist politics and his belief in and practice of free love, A Man of Parts is an astonishing novel of passion, ambition and controversy.
Recommend this book
Add your recommendation
Only registered users can recommend books. Please use the buttons below to either create a new account, or sign-in to an existing account.
This is his best book in years: sprawling, funny, touching, a near-perfect fusion of story and scholarship - Mail on Sunday
Excellent... scrupulous and scholarly... It bounds along terrifically - Guardian
Lodge's robust approach, his insights, energy and humour, enable him to present HG as a man not only for his own times but also for ours - Irish Times
Absorbing and thoroughly enjoyable - Scotsman
David Lodge's novel goes straight to the heart of the story... It is pure fun - Evening Standard
Absorbing - Financial Times
A clever kind of half-genre, somewhere between fiction and fact, very much back in vogue with British writers ...funny and powerful - GQ
Curiously engrossing. Its power is cumulative: there are no flashes of startling moments, just a slow unfolding of friendships and feuds, plots and counter plots - Daily Telegraph
The artistry is considerable... the style is clear , light and graceful (Wellsian, even); yet there is often a great deal of spade work behind the scenes... He invents entire scenes very believably - Times Literary Review
I read it with entire interest and enjoyment, and learned a lot about H. G. Wells - Spectator
Lodge is to be congratulated for having filled [Wells's affairs] in with the relevant novelistic detail... It is a testimony to Lodge's powers that even a reader familiar with, frankly, the ins and outs of Wells's life will have trouble picking out the novel's imagined moments - Daily Express
[Lodge's] Wells is a complex, humane figure, driven by a mixture of rebellion against stultifying Victorian values, belief in a better was of shaping society and callous, hypocritical self-interest. It's an intriguing study of a time when many of the values that are bulwarks of our society were in their infancy - Metro
A racy...account of a life lived against the mainstream which makes one long to read Wells again - Herald
An interesting experiment and well suited to a subject who does have quite a bit of explaining to do - Independent on Sunday
A treat of a read, not least because of the wonderful, rolling ease with which Lodge writes. Or, rather, with which it reads - prose like this does not come without effort. - Daily Mail
Sex-charged whopper on the life and works of HG Wells - The Word
Colourful characters and outrageous events abound. Confident, pacy writing keeps the reader wondering what Wells will get up to next and pondering the complex relationships to which he seems addicted - Literary Review
Very, very good.... So confidently are facts and flights of imaginative fancy interwoven that readers will find themselves unwilling - and unable - to distinguish between the two - Country Life
Consistently absorbing and enjoyable. I doubt whether a better way could have been found to bring the phenomenon that was H. G. Wells to life - Stand Point
Biographical fiction is on an upswing, to judge by this lively novel, faithful to the facts but free to interpret feelings - Saga
A Man of Parts has the lovely, loquacious qualities that typify eccentric wonders such as The War of the Worlds and The History of Mr Polly. David Lodge reminds us that Wells, an imperfect man, is still a worthy witness to his own world and to those worlds that may yet to come. - Third Way Magazine
Lodge understands the Edwardian literary and political scene extremely well, and traces Wells's entanglements with the louche world of Fabians and free lovers with real intimacy - Times Literary Supplement
As protean, elusive but compelling as it's hero, David Lodge's bio-novel about HG Wells breaks all the rules but still grips the reader - like Wells himself - Independent
A wry, racy and absorbing biographical novel - Telegraph, Seven Magazine
Lodge knows how to tease the inner man out from behind the historical figure, subjecting Wells to probing interviews throughout the book in which his deeper beliefs and contradictions are laid bare - Herald
This fictionalised version of HG Wells dramatises the author's life, which was full of politics, writing and women - Daily Telegraph
David Lodge's HG Wells was both a visionary and a chancer; as arrogant as he was insecure; with as many noble goals as base instincts; a mass of very human contradictions; as Lodge has it, a man of parts - Sunday Express
David Lodge's novels include Changing Places, Small World, Nice Work, Thinks..., Author, Author and, most recently, Deaf Sentence. He has also written stage plays and screenplays, and several books of literary criticism, including The Art of Fiction, Consciousness and the Novel and The Year of Henry James.