The Martian War: A Thrilling Eyewitness Account of the Recent Invasion as Reported by Mr. H. G. Wells by Gabriel Mesta
"It's ALL true!"
I know I've used that line before about a book.. in fact it was for the same author, though you'd not know it from the book jacket. Kevin J. Anderson, writing here as Gabriel Mesta, and for "Captain Nemo" as KJ Anderson, shows himself in both books as a master of retcon-ing, the craft of adjusting stories details in the aid of "retroactive continuity."
As a writer in Star Wars, Dune, X-Files and other media worlds, Anderson has certainly had to learn this skill - and he does it well here.
In the earlier book Anderson gives us the life of Jules Verne, and his friend, a man who became "Captain Nemo." The fantastic adventures and accomplishments of "Nemo" fuel the writing of Verne. In this novel he does a similar turn for HG Wells.
In this version of Wells's life, were told a story that brings Dr. Moreau together with Percival Lowell discovering the first scout from Mars - a forerunner of a terrible invasion that only Wells, his lady love Jane, and TH Huxley can stop. From the Invisible Man, War of the Worlds, the First Men in the Moon and more, Anderson mines details for this adventure. At then end, much as he did in Nemo, we're left to assume that Wells drew his inspiration for his famous stories from this real "Martian War," and the exploits therein.
Lots of fun and a neat survey of Wells life and work, albeit in a fanciful way. I'm left to hope he'll next turn his attention to Edgar Rice Burroughs - I just hope that SM Stirling's Sky People hasn't made him fear to try his hand in that sphere.