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The Island of Dr. Moreau is an 1896 science fiction novel by H.G. Wells. It is the tale of Prendick, a British scientist, who is shipwrecked off Sumatra, then rescued and brought to an unnamed island. There he meets the evil scientist prototype, Dr. Moreau: a white-haired Old Testament type who, with the aid of a man named Montgomery, is changing animals into crazy man-beasts. Hyena-swine, Dog Man, Wolf woman - Prendick is horrified by the cruel experiments in vivisection that were being performed.
Like a good evil scientist, Moreau expounds to Prendick that he'd lived on the island for eleven years, where he and Montgomery had advanced the techniques he'd developed back in London. The beasts have all been given the ability to speak to some degree, and have been brainwashed with a rudimentary religious belief system which keeps them at bay. Wells, always looking for the teachable moment, wrote Dr. Moreau during a period when debates over Natural Selection were raging. So there are moments where his mode of social reformer overtakes the narrative, but overall, this is a well done story that will stay with reader long after it's read.