I read this book for a very specific reason, which will not be of relevance to too many readers I have just bought an apartment in Folkestone, where Kipps is set, and I was curious to read an account of it in its brief late Victorian moment of glory Kipps didn t disappoint on that front Wells portrays Folkestone quite vividly, as a wealthy, showy, brittle, snobbish, look at me resort town, contrasted with humbler Hythe, where the protagonist feels at home This parochial interest aside, I enjoyed the novel The plot is a bit throwaway, to the extent that I don t think that a spoiler would spoil anyone s potential enjoyment of the book it s essentially rags to riches to rags to riches, accelerating noticeably at the end This element of social snakes and ladders enables much close, satirical observation of the dynamics of class, which I suspect was distinctly hard hitting at the time the novel was published, and which remains historically interesting at the very least today In the edition in which I read Kipps Penguin Classics , there was an interesting early appreciation of the novel by Henry James, who was a friend of Wells at the time, though they later fell out After gushing away for a while about how wonderful the novel is in what sounds suspiciously like a bad parody of himself But of course you yourself know how immitigably the thing is done it is of such a brilliancy of true truth , James finally makes two specific points about Kipps that it is the first consistently and intelligently ironic or satirical novel James contrasts it with Thackeray, whose irony is tainted by sentimental or conventional interference and that Wells has for the first time treated the English lower middle class without the picturesque, the grotesque, the fantastic and romantic interference he sees in Dickens and George Eliot Wells has handled its vulgarity in a scientific historic spirit, seen the whole thing all in its own strong light Abstracting from the business about vulgarity which says about James than Wells I think James has a point Something that is unusual and refreshing in the novel is its humane and sympathetic though immitigably ironic take on characters of a kind who are generally seen in novels of this era as, precisely, picturesque and exotic Wells s mother was a housemaid and he started life, like Kipps, in a drapery store he knows whereof he speaks Apart from its interest from the point of view of social and literary history, Kipps is an engaging read, insouciant in its use of hokey plot devices like coincidence, and generally not taking itself too seriously Kipps is a good comic character, and Ann one of the women he is involved with another I laughed out loud reading it a couple of times The writing is very sharp I liked a description of Kipps s headmaster s wife as a small partially effaced woman , and another of the cough of Kipps s social mentor Coote as sounding like a very very old sheep a quarter of a mile away being blown to pieces by a small charge of gunpowder I hadn t read anything Wells before, but I ll certainly read. I wound up thoroughly enjoying the second half of Kipps, where Wells stops his merciless mockery of the eponymous anti hero and begins instead to poke fun at himself Favorite lines include Kipps s enthusiastic determination to set himself up as a bookseller because all books are the same If you don t like one book, you take up another it s not something that really matters, like print dresses or serviettes. Bis zum Ende bin ich nicht warmgeworden mit dem Buch, obwohl die Story durchaus nicht unspannend ist Artie Kipps aus der Unterschicht erbt unverhofft sehr viel Geld und wird dadurch automatisch irgendwie zum Mitglied der besseren Gesellschaft, ohne wirklich dazuzugeh ren Die Sprache des Romans ist extrem geschraubt und gestelzt, kein Wunder das Buch ist ja schon sehr alt, aber es ist mehr als das das Parlieren in der guten englischen Gentlemen Gesellschaft und der damit einhergehende Sprachstil, war es, der mir derart geh rig auf die Nerven ging Auch diese wahnwitzigen gesellschaftlichen Konventionen sind zwar beim ersten und zweiten Mal schaurig interessant zu betrachten, wenn sie sich aber durch das ganze Buch ziehen, wird es irgendwann g hnend langweilig und man fragt sich Haben die keine anderen Probleme Am meisten gest rt hat mich am Ende der Umstand, dass alle wichtigen Ereignisse, in denen ein bisschen Handlung und Drama entstehen, wie z.B die Informierung des Ziehonkels ber die Erbschaft oder die geplante Heirat oder die Geburt der Tochter ganz geflissentlich nebenbei erw hnt werden, wobei die Verwendung der falschen Gabel beim Dinner, irgendein nicht sitzender Knopf am Hemd oder die Nichtannahme einer Einladung raumgreifend und seitenf llend endlos lang thematisiert werden und auch noch dar ber philosophiert wird Mir ist schon klar was H.G Wells damit ausdr cken wollte, aber die feine Gesellschaft in ihrer tumben, nichtssagenden, st ndig plappernden Nutzlosigkeit gibt f r mich einfach nicht genug interessanten Stoff, um sie derart ausf hrlich zu betrachten Das ist laaangweilig.Die Botschaft, die der Roman vermittelt, hat mir dann wieder gut gefallen, obwohl sie ein bisschen plakativ ist Artie Kipps geht durch den Betrug eines derartigen Gentlemen bankrott, ist irgendwie froh dar ber und wird dadurch endlich aus der feinen Gesellschaft, mit der er so hadert, herauskatapultiert Unverhofft schl gt das Schicksal erneut zu, und die ehrliche Unterschicht , von der er nie erwartet h tte, dass sie siegen k nnte, verschafft ihm einen erneuten Erfolg.Fazit Die Hintergrundgeschichte finde ich gut die Ausf hrung hat mir nicht ganz so gut gefallen, vielleicht schaue ich mir mal die Film oder Musicalversion an A really interesting examination of class and culture in the late 19th century, with great characterisation and moments of humour and poignancy It has a touch of Great Expectations about it and is definitely my favourite HG Wells so far. I picked this book having an open mind I had never heard of it or knew what it was about The book starts with the main character Arthur Kipps He s a young orphan living with his aunt and uncle Through several chapters we learn that he has been an apprentice to a draper for seven years We also learn that his aunt and uncle live a modest life They are not wealthy but neither are they poor This is very important because later on Kipps finds out that he is the grandson of an incredibly wealthy man With this inheritance he now has to accomodate himself to the life of a wealthy upper class gentleman The book goes through his experiences with the upper class society and his struggle to fit in Overall it s an extremely enjoyable book and provides many life lessons. Read this book for free through Project Gutenberg The main character is a man called Kipp Kipp is a sweet man who make an honest living in a shop as an assistant One day Kipp comes in to some money and and then he s loses it all when trying to build a house This book is pretty much money based, on how easy it comes and gos and how you shouldn t get ideas above your station just because you have money Orphaned At An Early Age, Artie Kipps Is Stunned To Discover Upon Reading A Newspaper That He Is The Grandson Of A Wealthy Gentleman And The Inheritor Of His Fortune Thrown Dramatically Into The Upper Classes, He Struggles To Learn The Etiquette And Rules Of Polite Society But, As He Soon Discovers, Becoming A True Gentleman Is Neither As Easy Nor As Desirable As It First Appears Kipps Is A Hilarious Tale Of One Man S Struggle For Self Improvement And A Witty Satire Of Pretension I read this as I had been to see the new production of Half A Sixpence and wanted to read the source material It is really interesting to read it and see which parts have been taken out from all versions of the musical and additionally which parts have been put into the new version I thoroughly enjoyed the musical and enjoyed most of the novel I had only ever read the science fiction works of Wells so this was a big change It is a real insight into the turn of the century period and I feel I was guided through the town of Folkestone Unsurprisingly it is a lot political than the musical and most of this gave the novel depth The characters of Anne and Helen are very much there to help us understand Kipps and could do with development something that does happen in the new version of the musical This is possible because of the autobiographical element of Kipps but fuller characterisation of the secondary characters would have benefitted the novel.The parts in London were great and an effective contrast with Folkestone Still not sure what I feel about the end of the novel but overall I really enjoyed the novel.