Mary and Frankenstein

Publisher: Andersen Press

Review

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is credited with having invented the science fiction genre. But many adults and certainly very few children will know the fascinating and frequently sad story of her life, and the multitude of experiences that led to the creation of her iconic work.

The young Mary Shelley, the daughter of pivotal feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, never knew her trailblazing mother. Yet her influence formed a strong impression in the young Mary’s mind, and, along with her father’s involvement in the literary society of their day, Mary grew up an imaginative child and keen reader. As she got older, Mary was fascinated by experiments with electricity to reanimate dead animals, conducted by the scientists of her time.

As a young teen, unhappy at home, she ran away with the poet Percy Shelley to Italy, where she stayed with Shelley, the poet Byron, her sister Claire and Dr Polidori in a house by a lake. Waking from a dream about a monster created from the pieces of other bodies and given life by electricity, Mary started writing what was to be her masterpiece.

This is a great introduction to Mary, a teen girl writing in a man’s world, as well as a beautiful testament to imagination and creativity.

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