This Modern Library edition includes a new Introduction by Wendy Steiner, the chair of the English department at the University of Pennsylvania and author of The Scandal of Pleasure.
Mary Shelley was born Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin in 1797 in London. She eloped to France with Shelley, whom she married in 1816. After Frankenstein, she wrote several novels, including Valperga and Falkner, and edited editions of the poetry of Shelley, who had died in 1822. Mary Shelley died in London in 1851.
About the Author
Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin (1797–1851), daughter of political radical William Godwin and feminist writer Mary Wollstonecraft, grew up among the leading voices of the Romantic movement. She met and wed poet Percy Bysshe Shelley in 1816. When the Shelleys spent that summer on Lake Geneva with friends—among them, Lord Byron—Byron challenged the writers to a ghost-story contest. Mary Shelley’s sketch inspired her novel Frankenstein (1818), influenced by her loss of her infant daughter in 1815. Four years after Frankenstein’s publication, her husband drowned. The tragedy haunted Shelley for the rest of her life, which she dedicated to annotating her husband’s writing, publishing her own novels, and revising Frankenstein for republication.