In 1863 Jules Verne, famed author of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Around the World in Eighty Days, wrote a novel that his literary agent deemed too farfetched to be published. More than one hundred years later, his great-grandson found the handwritten, never-before published manuscript in a safe. That manuscript was Paris in the Twentieth Century, an astonishingly prophetic view into the future by one of the most renowned science fiction writers of our time . . .
About Jules Verne
Jules Verne was born into a family with seafaring tradition in Nantes, France, in 1828. At an early age he tried to run off and ship out as a cabin boy but was stopped and returned to his family. Verne… More about Jules Verne
Like I can turn down a novel by Jules Verne.
What can you say about the man who wrote 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, MYSTERIOUS ISLAND, JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH? It’s thanks to Verne that the genre of science fiction even exists! His works led to those of Arthur C. Clarke, Larry Niven, Michael Crichton–an entire century worth of masters of adventure. His genius led generations of talented people to write, compose music, make movies, and most important of all, read.
Not that we were likely to be publishing his next novel.
But lo! and behold, there was a next novel. And it was science fiction! Woo-hoo!
In PARIS IN THE 20TH CENTURY, Verne hypothesized some pretty bizarre stuff: automobiles, fax machines, elevators, even mega-corporations. Too weird to publish, so he was rejected–just waiting for Lester and Judy Lynn Del Rey to get their imprint off the ground. And I was lucky enough to be around when the time was right. –Steve Saffel, Senior Editor