Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus is a novel written by English author Mary Shelley that tells the story of Victor Frankenstein, a young scientist who creates a grotesque but sapient creature in an unorthodox scientific experiment. Shelley started writing the story when she was 18, and the first edition of the novel was published anonymously in London in 1818 when she was 20. Her name first appeared on the second edition, published in France in 1823.
Frankenstein is infused with elements of the Gothic novel and the Romantic movement. At the same time, it is an early example of science fiction. Brian Aldiss has argued that it should be considered the first true science fiction story because, in contrast to previous stories with fantastical elements resembling those of later science fiction, the central character “makes a deliberate decision” and “turns to modern experiments in the laboratory” to achieve fantastic results. It has had a considerable influence in literature and popular culture and spawned a complete genre of horror stories, films, and plays.
I enjoyed this book, which ultimately questions what it is to be human. Every book that has been written about artificial intelligence since Frankenstein owes something to Mary Shelley. I found the relationship between monster and creator compelling and fascinating
I liked the fact that although Frankenstein sees his monster as a brutal demon, the book allows readers to see events from the monster’s perspective. I liked the chapters in the story that were narrated by the monster because I sympathized with his loneliness, while I thought Victor Frankenstein was arrogant and self-righteous. Ultimately it is Frankenstein who must answer for the monstrous act committed by his creation.
Overall I would rate this story 4.5/5 because while at times I became frustrated with Victor Frankenstein’s arrogant narration, I would highly recommend it and I can see why it has been enjoyed by so many generations.