Tono-Bungay (1909), by H. G. Wells, is a realist semi-autobiographical novel. It is narrated by George Ponderevo, a science student who is drafted in to help with the promotion of Tono-Bungay, a harmful stimulant disguised as a miraculous cure-all, the creation of his ambitious uncle Edward. As the tonic prospers, George experiences a swift rise in social status, elevating him to riches and opportunities that he had never imagined, nor indeed desired. The novel displays Edward's social climbing satirically, and also George's discomfort at rising in social class. The hero's personal life is also narrated with unusual frankness for an Edwardian novel, from his unsuccessful marriage to Marion, to his affair with the liberated Effie to his doomed relationship with the Hon. Beatrice Normandy, whom he had known since childhood. -- Excerpted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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December 15, 2009
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