by Mary Shelley
The wife of the famous writer Percy Bysshe Shelley dashed off this classic of Gothic horror after having a dreadful nightmare. Ever since
then, generations of readers and film-viewers have shared in her nightmare.
Dr. Victor Frankenstein is the father of all mad scientists. Driven by a diseased ambition to prove mankind equal to God, Frankenstein robs
graves, harnesses vast powers of nature, and learns how to put life into dead flesh. By the time he succeeds in making his Monster alive,
the poor doctor is half-dead with fever and half-mad with the realization of what he has unleashed on the world. By the time he recovers,
Frankenstein is stricken with remorse and wants to undo the awful thing he has done. But that means destroying the enormous, disfigured
creature he brought to life. And in the meantime, that creature has gone out into the world to make its own fortune, its own mistakes, and
its own discoveries about love, hate, life, and death.
The remainder of the book is a combination of gripping suspense and inexorable tragedy, as the monster seeks revenge on the man who made him
who made him so badly that the whole world fears him. The books point of view allows you to share both Frankensteins feelings of dread,
guilt, and despair, and the Monsters feelings of loneliness, self-hate, and revenge.
And no, were not talking about a flat-headed, green-skinned giant who waddles around, grunting incoherently, with bolts sticking out of his
neck. Imagine a person put together out of spare parts from other people, parts that dont match, held together by gruesome scar tissue
but with an intelligent, inquisitive mind inside that is agonized by the way other people shrink away from him, the way they pre-judge him
because of his ugliness.
Im sure theres a moral in there somewhere. But in the frozen wilderness of the novels ending, you may forget all about the improving
moral of the story, and be stunned by the grief and emptiness that remains an object of horror, even after the Monster has ceased to be
Recommended Age: 14+
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