Short summary - Master of the World
Jules Gabriel Verne
The inventor of the multi-amphibious transport wants to take over the world with his invention, but a police hunt is organized for him. As a result, he fell victim to megalomania, challenging a simple thunderstorm.
The novel is set in the USA. Smoky clouds appear over the top of Geith Airy, a six-hundred-meter mountain in North Carolina. Residents of the village of Pleasant Garden, which lies at the foot of the mountain, wake up from strong tremors. Flames appear on the mountain. Residents fear that the mountain is an active volcano. It is not possible to fly in a balloon over the mountain: the wind carries the balloon in the other direction.
Washington Inspector John Strok receives a task from his boss, Ward, to investigate this event. Both believe that an active volcano is to blame. Stork goes to Pleasant Garden and gathers an expedition to climb the volcano, which includes two guides and a burgomaster. But they have to turn back, because They cannot overcome the sheer wall that surrounds the mountain.
Two weeks later, a strange car appears that drives through the streets of Philadelphia at a speed of two hundred and forty kilometers per hour. Soon this device takes part in a car race organized by a local club. The car crosses the finish line and disappears into Lake Michigan.
A Moving Thing appears off the coast of New England, but disappears before ships can get close. Even a sea cruiser cannot catch up with the craft. A little later, large funnels appear on Lake Kirdal with absolute calm on the water. Locals believe it is caused by the activity of a sea monster or a submarine.
Strok's task is to figure it out. In his mailbox, he finds an anonymous letter signed "H. d. V., in which he is asked to continue his work. The inspector notices that two people are following him.
The US government requires an unknown inventor to sell his device. In the mailbox of the Washington Police Department, a written response from the inventor to the government is found. The letter was sent from a mysterious craft called the Horror. The author of the letter - the Lord of the world - reports that it is pointless to try to take possession of the device. He is going to sell his invention to someone else and explains that he wants to conquer the whole world with his car.
Then a mysterious apparatus is seen over Lake Erie in Black Rock Bay, not far from the American city of Toledo. Strok goes there and, together with two colleagues, waits in ambush for the next appearance of the machine. When the "Horror" appears, two come to the ground, one remains on board the device. The police leave the hideout and make themselves felt. The men run back to the Horror. As the craft leaves the bay, Strok manages to hook onto the "anchor" of the machine. For some time, the inspector drags behind the apparatus, and then loses consciousness.
Strok comes to his senses aboard the Horror, which is still floating on the surface of Lake Erie. The three men ignore all his attempts to engage in conversation with them. Two warships appear and attack the Horror. The ship leaves them towards Niagara Falls. The ships stop pursuing. Wings "grow" at the device, and "Horror" flies away.
Soon the device lands in the crater of the Gereit Airi volcano, and Strok meets the captain, whose name is Robur the victorious. He wants to destroy his base, as he has been seen here too often. After the team simulates a volcanic eruption, the craft flies away.
Over the Gulf of Mexico, crazy Robur gets caught in a thunderstorm. He wants to prove to God that there are other gods besides him. The "horror" is struck by lightning, which causes the electrical control system to explode. The device falls into the sea from a height of three hundred meters. Strok is the only survivor of the crash and is picked up at sea.