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Frankenstein (A Penguin Classics Hardcover) Hardcover – September 30, 2014
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Frankenstein, loved by many decades of readers and praised by such eminent literary critics as Harold Bloom, seems hardly to need a recommendation. If you haven't read it recently, though, you may not remember the sweeping force of the prose, the grotesque, surreal imagery, and the multilayered doppelgänger themes of Mary Shelley's masterpiece. As fantasy writer Jane Yolen writes of this (the reviewer's favorite) edition, "The strong black and whites of the main text [illustrations] are dark and brooding, with unremitting shadows and stark contrasts. But the central conversation with the monster--who owes nothing to the overused movie image but is rather the novel's charnel-house composite--is where [Barry] Moser's illustrations show their greatest power ... The viewer can all but smell the powerful stench of the monster's breath as its words spill out across the page. Strong book-making for one of the world's strongest and most remarkable books." Includes an illuminating afterword by Joyce Carol Oates. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From School Library Journal
Grade 7 Up- The name Frankenstein conjures a host of screen and cartoon images. This radio theatre presentation of Mary Shelley's horror story done by the St. Charles Players uses language compatible with the original text. The script is coupled with appropriate sound effects including some bloodcurdling screams. The combination should encourage student listeners to learn about Dr. Victor Frankenstein and his monstrous creation. There are contemporary issues in this classic novel's themes such as the moral implications of scientific discovery and how one person's zeal for success can affect others. Although the emotional portrayal of multiple deaths is sometimes melodramatic and the wooden speech of the monster is appropriately pathetic, overall the company moves briskly and skillfully through the story. This recording is best suited for use as a classroom aid in introducing or reviewing the book. Also, it might prove valuable to students preparing a radio theatre adaptation. The thin cardboard jacket is not sturdy enough for frequent circulation and cover art is minimal. Cassettes are clearly marked, and each side is announced. This presentation of Frankenstein is a useful but not essential purchase for school libraries.
Barbara Wysocki, Cora J. Belden Library, Rocky Hill, CT
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
The story of a man who’s expectation of knowledge led to the love of science, which resulted in a passion for exploration and grandeur that led to obsession and achievement. But to what end? Victor Frankenstein engaged in undertakings surpassing any ever attempted. He without consideration, self-preservation, or repercussions painstakingly constructed a human form and brought him life. Yet on the day of his creation birth, he ran from him calling him a monster and left him to his own devices. Some look at his creation as being just such named. However, was the creation indeed a monster? Is a living thing, which can think, love, empathizes, long, and want truly be considered a monster or, as Robert Waltson calls it, a hypocritical fiend. Or, should the creator, the one the creature relied on, the one who brought him life and then abandoned him be indeed perceived as the monster?
Many passages exist in these writing that I adore, but I will share just one with you:
“Nay, these are virtuous and immaculate beings! I, the miserable and the abandoned, am an abortion to be spurned at, and kicked, and trampled on. Even now my blood boils at the recollection of this injustice. But it is true that I am a wretch.” ~ Frankenstein’s monster
Those who are familiar with Frankenstein only via the plethora of film adaptations may be very surprised by the true nature of this cautionary tale. The monster, whose name is not Frankenstein, isn't really a monster at all. He's not the mindless, lumbering, grunting brute who smashes everything in site just because it's in his way; rather, he's an articulate and sympathetic character who wants nothing more than to be accepted, and even loved, by those around him, but ultimately comes to realize just how hated and misunderstood he is by society at large. His acts of violence and destruction are ultimately a reflection of and retaliation for the cruel treatment he receives from those who judge him without making an effort to understand him. The true monster, Shelley maintains, is his creator, Dr. Frankenstein--and by extension, humanity as a whole.
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