Book Review: The Poison Belt by Sir Aurthur Conan Doyle

Lately I have watched a huge number of movies that feature fictitious ‘undead’ characters. I noticed that there are a couple of films that have the same ‘undead’ story. A dangerous virus is spread out across the country as thousands of people turn into bloodthirsty creatures and lurk the highways for the people who haven’t been affected yet.

However, in the middle of the bloodthirsty undead population, a group of people somehow manages to survive. And that are the people the story focuses on. Some recommendations to such movies are in the end of this post.

the poison beltWhen I was reading The Poison Belt by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, which was first published in 1913, I had the feeling of watching just another undead story. I’ve watched a number of such movies so when the story followed a group of people exploring the ‘dead world’ with so many bodies lying here and there, my mind was drawing the scene from those movies. But overall, the story is a great one.

The Poison Belt can be called a science fiction in my opinion. However, it’s not just a sci-fi story that you can enjoy and forget afterward. The story follows Professor Challenger and a group of his friends. The professor discovers that a belt of poisonous ether is about to come in contact with Earth that will leave everybody dead on the planet. People of specific regions have already begun to behave weird which, the professor says, is the reaction of poisonous ether.

However, as a crazy yet incredibly genius scientist, the professor thinks that they might live a little longer if they could live inside a sealed room with lots of oxygen cylinder. But for how long? They don’t know.

Surprisingly, they do manage to escape the poison of ether. But do they feel safe in a world where everyone else is dead? How does it feel like walking through a bunch of dead people around? How will you survive when there’s no factories, stations, food production, farming and so on?

The story not only gives us the insight of how exactly you may feel in a lonely earth but also gives you a feeling that you should make the best out of the short time you’re given to live. The story can be inspirational and influential despite being a science fiction short story. The story really is amazing.

If I were to rate the story, I’ll give it a 4/5.

For the record, I read a translated copy of the story.

Movies featuring undead include: 28 Weeks Later, Devil’s Playground, Dawn of the Dead, Shaun of the Dead, Night of the Living Dead, Resident Evil series and so on.

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11 thoughts on “Book Review: The Poison Belt by Sir Aurthur Conan Doyle

  1. i never try reviewing a certain book i had read . am not a good at it. ahaha. i jus read, and appreciate!

  2. Pingback: Book Review: When the World Screamed by Arthur Conan Doyle | AIS Journal

    • There may be. I haven’t come across any up until now. Please help yourself searching on Google for a web copy of the story. Plus if you are in Bangladesh, you can always find the translated copy named “Bishboloy” in Sheba Prokashoni.

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