They try, only to discover the sinister Biblioteka Obscura, or "Dark Library," built centuries before by a Frankenstein ancestor who was an alchemist.
Both fans of Mary Bryce Shelley's classic, "Frankenstein," and new fans of Gothic fiction who have only a passing recognition of the Frankenstein name will enjoy "This Dark Endeavor," Kenneth Oppel's recently published prequel to the original.
Nowhere is this so clear as in Frankenstein. When, at the end of Shelley's novel, her narrator, Walton, finally sets eyes on Victor Frankenstein's dreaded creature, he describes him as having "a form I cannot find words to describe; gigantic in stature, yet uncouth and distorted inn's proportions .
The very monster who has murdered all of Frankenstein's loved ones is himself a tortured soul, and the strange, misshapen creature--who has studied Plutarch and read Milton--cries out to his human maker in such eloquent anguish that we cannot help being moved.
Also, there exists a popular misunderstanding which thinks that Frankenstein
is the monster instead of the doctor.
The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein. Delacorte/Penguin Random House, September 2018.
Though The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein provides an adequate reimagining of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, it does not deliver on its promise of an edge-of-your-seat horror story.
They're even discovering ways of editing people's DNA (see "Modern-Day Frankensteins?," facing page).
Mary Shelley recalled later that the seed for Frankenstein had come to her in a vision deep in the night: "I saw the pale student of unhallowed arts kneeling beside the thing he had put together.
Frankenstein was written between June 16, 1816-May 13, 1817, proofed by Percy Shelley through the fall of 1817, printed by December 31, 1817, and published anonymously on January 1, 1818 by Lackington, Allen and Company, London.
In February 1818, Percy Shelley wrote a review, published only in 1832 (On 'Frankenstein'; Athenaeum, November 10); some fragments are worth quoting in full:
The ponderous official title of the show notwithstanding (we'll call it "Young Frankenstein: The Musical" from herein), the production that began a four-performance run before a full house of 2,300 people Friday was high-voltage fun.
First was the 1974 movie "Young Frankenstein," a wonderful parody of Frankenstein horror films.
Victor Frankenstein, a native of Geneva who early evinces a talent in natural science.
Its program of revenge accounts for the lives of Frankenstein's bride, his brother, his good friend, and a family servant.