The Midwich Cuckoos (S.F. Masterworks) [Hardcover] [Sep 08, 2016] John Wyndham (author)

Published March 8, 2001 by Ballantine Books.

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4 stars (4 reviews)

In the sleepy English village of Midwich, a mysterious silver object appears and all the inhabitants fall unconscious. A day later the object is gone and everyone awakens unharmed – except that all the women in the village are discovered to be pregnant.The resultant children of Midwich do not belong to their parents: all are blonde, all are golden eyed. They grow up too fast and their minds exhibit frightening abilities that give them control over others and brings them into conflict with the villagers just as a chilling realisation dawns on the world outside . . .The Midwich Cuckoos is the classic tale of aliens in our midst, exploring how we respond when confronted by those who are innately superior to us in every conceivable way.

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Review of 'The Midwich Cuckoos' on 'Storygraph'

3 stars

Surprisingly dull.

The central idea of a group of telepathic and psychopathic alien children being raised in a sleepy English village while they prepare to replace humanity is great fun, the thought of all those forced pregnancies is genuinely horrifying, and the downbeat end is effective, but...

The framing is really clumsy. The story is narrated by someone who is only loosely involved, has no agency and no real character of his own. His opening line tells you that he and his wife weren’t badly affected by what happens, there are several missing years while he’s off working in Canada during which time interesting things should have been happening, and lots of events are described to him after the fact by other people; all of which robs the whole thing of any tension or excitement.

The most interesting people to follow in this story would have been the women and …

Invasion through Impregnation

4 stars

The white-haired, golden-eyed, alien children of Midwich, with the murderous ability to compel humans to kill themselves and each other, are the stars of this story. They share the bill with the quintessentially English setting of the village where they are spawned.

Another Wyndham regular, the thoughtful visionary, appears here in the form of Gordon Zellaby, an eccentric retiree who is the only one thinking far enough ahead to stop of the strange events at Midwich from destroying humanity.

Unfortunately Zellaby, unlike the triffid survivalist Coker or the heretical chrysalids' uncle Axel, is a bit of a bore. His waffly pontifications slow the story down. Adding to this, a lot of the action happens through second-hand accounts, as the narrator doesn't witness the key events himself.

The children begin by exploiting their surrogate parents' natural instinct to nurture them, only to turn on their hosts with plans of world domination. …