Monday, March 4, 2013

71. Frankenstein

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
Around 260 pages

As you already know, I do these posts chronologically and we have recently come across a streak of books that I have read already, which is why you are being hit with around six posts at once.  Normality will be restored soon.

I only read horror books in October, so I maybe read this book around two years ago.  It is still fresh in my mind, however, mostly because it was so different than what I expected.  I was, of course, expected some monster horror novel.  I was very wrong indeed.

This is the story of Dr. Frankenstein, who figures out how to create life without his johnson.  So the doctor is actually Frankenstein and the monster is the monster of Frankenstein, not Frankenstein.  Common misconception.  Anyway, the monster is not a grunting zombie like he is portrayed in the movies, but actually quite intelligent.  This actually makes the story quite sad, because he knows he is very self aware.

This is a short one; you can probably read it in one sitting.  I was a little disappointed in it because I was expecting a horror story and it was really more of a novel on the nature of men and the danger of playing god.  Still, it is a very thoughtful book, one that has been trivialized by Universal studios.

RATING: ****-

Interesting Facts:

Shelley wrote it for a competition between her friends and family.

Admired by Sir Walter Scott.



  1. There was a fascinating documentary on BBC the other night about the time spent at the villa Diodati that summer .. nd the 'writing competition.
    I had often wondered about the 'other' stories.. Well now I know.
    Shelley's was lost - no one seems to know if it was any good or not. Byron's was tacked onto the end of some other work and generally forgotten about. Polidori's however deserves more credit. Called 'The vampyre' it was the first 'modern' vampire story.. Before vampires had bee brutal and nasty creatures.. polidori was the first to make the vampire what we most associate him as today.. the precursor of Dracula .. a sophisticated, educated, smooth and sexy British aristocrate.
    I'd also failed to click together that 1816 was the famous 'Year without a summer', when, due to a huge volcanic explosion in Indonesia, the Northern hemisphere went into a sort of nuclear winter and their summer was almost perpetual rain and thunder storms.. all very conducive to the gothic atmosphere. (Plus all the sexual tension rife in the villa)

    1. That is all super interesting. I laughed at the sexual tension thing but it is true! Damn, I wish reality shows were around back then.