24. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley (Aug 18)
I wanted to read this after having watched 2 seasons of Penny Dreadful and realizing I didn’t really know the story of Frankenstein the scientist, or his ‘monster’. He’s always been this thing that everyone knew about, but I never bothered to read the book or watch any of the earlier movies. So now, the films are on my list of things to watch soon.
So I thought I’d go back to the original source, and start with the book. The audiobook happened to be on sale, so I grabbed it and had a listen on my way to work every day. The book is immediately different from most that I’ve read, since it’s written in letter form from a brother to his sister, as he’s off traveling the world looking for adventure and fame. In the early stage of the story, he manages to pick up Frankenstein, in the middle of an ice field, as he’s chasing after his monster. Most of the book is of course written by our narrator, who is telling the story Frankenstein relates to him, before he dies on his ship.
The story is lovely and sad, and you can’t help but feel bad for the ‘monster’ he created, who had to live a life of solitude and learn everything on his own. There are a few parts that are a BIT unbelievable, like how the monster managed to make it back home to Frankenstein’s hometown in/near Geneva, and how they managed to rent ice dogs and sleds and travel out into the great nothing.
But for a book, we get to suspend our disbelief and imagine it was possible, somehow.
I can’t believe it took me so long to read the story, but I’m glad I did. Now I can have an opinion on the Penny Dreadful‘s character’s storyline, and on all of the movies I’m about to watch.