Jules Verne’s “Underground City” Resurfaces

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A lost classic written by Jules Verne, the father of science fiction, over 100 years ago and never before published unabridged in English, emerges this month in not one but two new unique editions as part of celebrations to mark the centenary of Verne's death on March 24, 1905. The first new edition of “The Underground City” is available through Lulu (http://www.lulu.com), a web site that gives creators the power to publish their work directly to consumers. Another edition of the novel in a new translation from the French will be available later in the month from Scottish publisher Luath Press. The Lulu edition can be purchased at http://www.lulu.com/UndergroundCity.

Jules Verne, the father of science fiction, may have died 100 years ago, but he’s still pretty lively. The world will mark the centenary of Verne’s death with an international Jules Verne festival in France. Jackie Chan recently starred in a new film version of “Around the World in 80 Days.” Even a real space ship-- the transfer vehicle designed to supply the new international space station--bears the author’s name. Now Lulu, a web site that gives creators the power to publish their work directly to consumers, has assembled a new version of the lost Verne classic, "The Underground City".

While Verne is best known as a visionary whose work introduced fantastic inventions like submarines and flying machines to Victorian readers, he apparently also nurtured an affection for Scotland, which provides the setting for “The Underground City,” a novel set in a utopian society dwelling on the shore of a subterranean lake 1,500 feet below the Scottish countryside. The book was originally published in Paris in 1877 as “Les Indes Noires” ("The Black Indies").

The new edition of “The Underground City” relies on an English translation originally published in 1911 and salvaged for posterity through the efforts of Project Gutenberg a network of volunteers dedicated to creating a free library of electronic texts of works in the public domain that might otherwise be lost to history. One dollar from the sale of each copy of Verne’s classic on Lulu.com will be donated to support Project Gutenberg. Lulu also offers its own edition of the classic adventure “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.” Both books are available at http://www.lulu.com/UndergroundCity.

About Lulu : Founded by Bob Young (co-founder and former chairman of Red Hat), Lulu provides independent publishers with free access to on-demand publishing tools for books, e-books, music, images and calendars. Over 20,000 titles are available through Lulu. For more information, please contact pr@lulu.com.

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