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The Invasion

The Invasion by William Le Queux
By: (1864-1927)

This novel, also known as The Invasion of 1910, is a 1906 novel written mainly by William Le Queux (with H. W. Wilson providing the naval chapters). It is one of the more famous examples of Invasion literature and is an example of pre-World War I Germanophobia, as it preached the need to prepare for war with Germany. The book takes the form of a military history and includes excerpts from the characters' journals and letters and descriptions of the fictional German campaign itself. The novel originally appeared in serial form in the Daily Mail newspaper from 19 March 1906, and was a huge success. The newspaper's circulation increased greatly, and it made a small fortune for Le Queux, eventually being translated into twenty-seven languages and selling over one million copies in book form.

It is centered on an invasion by the Germans, who have managed to land a sizable invasion force on the East Coast of England. They advance inland, cutting all telegraph lines and despoiling farmland as they go, and the British struggle to mount a proper defense. The Germans eventually reach London and occupy half the city. A junior Member of Parliament declares that "Britain is not defeated" and organizes a resistance movement, the "League of Defenders", despite harsh reprisals by the Germans and a severe lack of arms. The Germans seem unable to combat this and tighten their control of London, and suddenly find themselves faced with a popular uprising. Eventually a newly-formed British Army marches to liberate London. The fictional war, however, is a stalemate since it appears that German forces have managed to occupy Belgium and the Netherlands. (Introduction by Wikipedia)

First Page:

THE INVASION

by

WM. LE QUEUX

LONDON: GEORGE NEWNES, LTD.

PREFACE.

"I sometimes despair of the country ever becoming alive to the danger of the unpreparedness of our present position until too late to prevent some fatal catastrophe."

This was the keynote of a solemn warning made in the House of Lords by Earl Roberts. His lordship, whilst drawing attention to our present inadequate forces, strongly urged that action should be taken in accordance with the recommendations of the Elgin Commission that "no military system could be considered satisfactory which did not contain powers of expansion outside the limit of the regular forces of the Crown."

"The lessons of the late war appear to have been forgotten. The one prevailing idea seems to be," said Earl Roberts, "to cut down our military expenditure without reference to our increased responsibilities and our largely augmented revenue. History tells us in the plainest terms that an Empire which cannot defend its own possessions must inevitably perish." And with this view both Lord Milner and the Marquis of Lansdowne concurred... Continue reading book >>


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