…and here is the Bookwitch, just crossing the finishing line of her twelve months of Foreign Reading Challenge. Not that a Canadian book is all that foreign, but it’s not British, and that was the whole point.
As you know, I like my main characters to be likeable. They don’t have to be good, but they need to have a certain something. Victor Frankenstein – yes, that Victor Frankenstein – is someone I didn’t particularly like. This prequel to Mary Shelley’s novel, written by Kenneth Oppel is a very exciting and easy to read thriller/horror story. Quite gory in places, but brave soul that I am, I only skipped about six pages towards the end. If you are a regular reader of this blog you will have no trouble working out which pages.
Not being an expert on the original Frankenstein, I was fascinated to see how Kenneth has incorporated the necessary bits from the original novel with his own new ideas, including a Geneva address like Woolstonekraft Alley. The love of Frankenstein’s life is in the book, and so is the faithful friend.
Victor has also been furnished with a twin brother who is just like him, only that little bit nicer and more popular, so he is jealous of Konrad. They are teenagers and we see them at home outside Geneva, being taught by Mr Frankenstein the elder, and finding a library of forbidden books underneath their castle.
Then Konrad falls ill, and to save his brother Victor and the other two enter into a world of alchemy and deceit, hoping to find the Elixir of Life.
It’s adventure of the kind that almost makes me ill with worry, and it doesn’t always go as well as we’d like. I couldn’t foresee exactly what they would do, but it was easy to guess what must ultimately happen, and it did.