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Frankenstein (Barnes & Noble Classics) [Paperback]

By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Karen Karbiener (Introduction by), Bob Berry (Illustrator), Michael Oakes, Divya Scialo (Illustrator), Marty Matlock (Editor) & Sylvia Yount
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Item Number 400418  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   288
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 6.8" Width: 4.22" Height: 0.76"
Weight:   0.35 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2003
Publisher   Barnes & Noble Classics
Age  10
ISBN  1593080050  
EAN  9781593080051  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
"Frankenstein," by Mary Shelley, is part of the "Barnes & Noble Classics"" "series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of "Barnes & Noble Classics": New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars Biographies of the authors Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events Footnotes and endnotes Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work Comments by other famous authors Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations Bibliographies for further reading Indices & Glossaries, when appropriateAll editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. "Barnes & Noble Classics "pulls together a constellation of influences--biographical, historical, and literary--to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works. Mary Shelley began writing "Frankenstein" when she was only eighteen. At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, "Frankenstein" tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering "the cause of generation and life" and "bestowing animation upon lifeless matter," Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature's hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creatureturns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein.
"Frankenstein," an instant bestseller and an important ancestor of both the horror and science fiction genres, not only tells a terrifying story, but also raises rofound, disturbing questions about the very nature of life and the place of humankind within the cosmos: What does it mean to be human? What responsibilities do we have to each other? How far can we go in tampering with Nature? In our age, filled with news of organ donation genetic engineering, and bio-terrorism, these questions are more relevant than ever.
Karen Karbiener received a Ph.D. from Columbia University and currently teaches literature at New York University.

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More About Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Karen Karbiener, Bob Berry, Michael Oakes, Divya Scialo, Marty Matlock & Sylvia Yount

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Wendy Steiner is the chair of the English department at the University of Pennsylvania and author of The Scandal of Pleasure.

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley lived in London. Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was born in 1797 and died in 1851.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Still relevant, though not for Cheap Horror Thrills  Nov 22, 2005
This book is truly worthy of the term "classic". Mary Shelley began writing this novel at the young age of 18, yet managed to create a landmark work of fiction. The story is interwoven with ever-present social and ethical questions. What does it mean to be human? What are the consequences of using scientific technology to play the role of Creator? How far is too far when tampering with the order of the universe?
Upon my first reading of this book I was pleasantly surprised to find that the creature is very intelligent and human-like, though grotesque in appearance. It is a shame that the Frankenstein creature is universally represented in the minds of the public as an oafish and very dimwitted monster with bolts in its neck and a green pallor. The true Frankenstein is far more intriguing. I love the parts of the book that are a first person narrative by the "creature".
I highly recommend this book as it is an enjoyable piece of classic literature. If you are a fan of horror, read this for an understanding of the early roots of the genre that you so love, and that those roots actually formed intellectual arguments and contained actual substance. This book is a must read for the well rounded reader. In fact, had I graduated from high school and never read this book, I would begin to question the quality of my own education.
Surprising  Sep 27, 2004
Before reading this book, I thought I had a fairly good understanding of what it was about (which is primarily why I was hesitant to actually read it). A mad scientist somehow created a monster in his lab. The monster, commonly (however, incorrectly) referrred to as Frankenstein, had green skin, was about seven feet tall, had bolts in his neck etc. And I recalled something about him being pursued through the streets by an angry fire-wielding mob.

What surprised me most about this book is how little of what I had always heard about it was actually true. The monster that most people refer to as Frankenstein actually has no name. He was created by a man whose last name is Frankenstein. There is a brief description of him, but no mentioning of neck bolts or green skin. Furthermore, there is no scene where a mob of people chases after him with fire. This was not, as I had previously been lead to believe, a horror novel. It is, rather, a book dealing with the themes of love, desire, acceptance, ignorance, resentment and revenge.

The following is a brief summary of the plot, so if you don't want to know what this is about I would advise you to not read this portion of my review: Frankenstein (the scientist, not monster) is a man deeply interested in science. One day he discovers how to give life to inanimate objects, and decides to assemble a being from various body parts. When he imparts this creature with life he is horrified at what he has created and flees. It isn't long before the "monster" learns that all people are horrified and appalled by his existence, and is driven to live in the woods. He ends up living outside of a family's home where he is able to observe them through a window. Through his observation, he is able to learn to speak and read perfect English. He feels a love for this family who are completely oblivious to his existence and feels a deep desire to establish a relationship with them. When he finally gets up the courage to meet them, they are of course terrified of him and drive him away. Sometime after this, the monster, devastated by humanity's unwillinglness to accept him and filled with resentment towards his maker who has forsaken him, decides to lash otu in revenge toward Frankenstein. He systematically kills off Frankenstein's family one by one. It then becomes Frankenstein's only goal in life to eradicate the menace he created.

This book is surprising in that it didn't really seem like a horror novel at all. Sure, the monster is composed of the body parts of corpses, but he is very much a human character, complete with a full spectrum of emotions. He desires love and companionship from human beings just like we all do, but he is denied this. This is a sad story, but not at all scary. The writing style is very unique in that it is extremely non-descriptive. In a way, I think that is a good thing. I've read far too many books that are too long-winded. This book is concise and to the point. The author did not use twenty pages to describe the look of the monster's left toenail. With so little detail, this book does require a little imagination but there's nothing wrong with that. Overall, it's a decent read but doesn't seem to have held up too well over time. I imagine that when this book was released it actually was considered scary, but in 2004 it really isn't. So if it's a horror novel you're looking for, I suggest looking elsewhere. But if you're interested in a book that explores the desire/need for acceptance and companionship and what happens when it is denied, this is a pretty good choice. Score: 7/10

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