Frankenstein: Book Review

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley was first published over two centuries ago but it is still relevant today. It has gained recognition as a classic novel and is one of the most influential novels ever published. Find out whywhy that is so and read a short summary of the novel of the classic book!

Frankenstein Summary

A crew on a boat that is on a voyage to the North Pole rescues a nearly frozen man named Victor Frankenstein. He tells them that he is chasing after a giant man and tells them his tale and how he ended up in the situation he is in now.

Victor tells the crew about his childhood in Naples, Italy and his desire to learn and understand the world. Just weeks before Victor is to depart for college in Germany, his mother passes away due to scarlet fever. That leads to Victor burying himself in experiments to distract him from his grief.

Frankenstein book cover
Frankenstein book review

One of those experiments includes giving life to a non-living object. But he is unable to replicate human parts so is creation ends up being 8 feet tall and hideous. Victor is appalled by his creation and runs away. When Victor returns to his lab, he discovers that his creation is gone. 

Victor becomes sick soon after and is bedridden and nursed back to health over a four-month span. After he recovers, Victor receives a letter saying that his brother William has been murdered. Once Victor arrives t Geneva, he sees the monster he created near the crime scene and deducts that it was the one who killed the monster. Now, Victor is consumed by guilt and grief and plans to put an end to the monster he created once and for all. 

Commentary

The story of Frankenstein is an entertaining one and makes for a great horror story. There are many themes and touches on philosophy. However, I found Frankenstein’s character to be pretty annoying. He seems to always wallow and it gets tedious fast.

Mary Shelley came up with the idea of the story because of a competition. The purpose of the competition was to see who could come up with the best horror story. After thinking for days, Shelley created the Frankenstein story at just 18 and the book was published on January 1, 1818.

When the novel was first published, it was well received and then mostly forgotten. Shelley published the novel anonymously and that proved to be the right move because once she was revealed to be the author, two reviews attacked the writing of the book because the author was a female.

In the mid-20th century, the novel received mostly positive reviews and the novel has gone on to become a permanent fixture in the literary world. It is also deemed as one of the first science fiction novels. Whether this novel is your cup of tea or not, it is impossible to ignore the significance of the novel of Frankenstein’s monster in popular culture.

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Conclusion

Some classic novels are worth reading and this is one of those novels. You can see what writing was like around the early 1800’s and see how science fiction novels changed over time. Have you read or plan to read this classic novel? Let us know in the comments below! Happy reading!

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