This is my absolute favorite of all amongst Wells' social novels. Yes, he's best known for his science fiction now, but he had a genuinely brilliant eye for social satire. In my opinion, The Wife of Sir Isaac Harman is his funniest, despite some indirect hints of anti-Semitism in his sometimes stereotypical portrait of Sir Issac himself.
He is not the main character, however: his wife Ellen is, as she gropes her way from a child-bride's terrified dependency upon her husband's will to finding a life and work of her own, with the help of a bumblingly romantic writer of domestic comedies. (Unlike several of Wells' other novels of women's intellectual growth, Ellen does not end up falling madly in love with a scientifically-minded iconoclast bearing a suspicious resemblance to Wells, thank goodness.) Occasionally, the writer character gets a trifle preachy, but who could resist a protagonist who suddenly declares herself a suffragette and smashes the nearest shop window because the time in jail means a holiday from her husband?
Well worth the read, in short.