Understanding Great Literature - Understanding Frankenstein

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9781590181478: Understanding Great Literature - Understanding Frankenstein
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After this gothic horror novel appeared in 1818, it sent chills down readers' spines. And most people were astounded to learn that it had been written by a teenaged girl. Mary Shelley was no ordinary girl, however. This information-packed companion to the novel chronicles her turbulent life, explains the sources of her ideas, and then examines the plot, characters, and themes of this classic and still influential work.

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Review:

"A review of the novel's critical analysis includes many sources. A list of thought-provoking discussion question and essay subject is included. The book is illustrated with black-and-white reproductions of period paintings, portraits...and stills. A useful addition that will serve both teachers and students well."
-- School Library Journal (September 2001) (School Library Journal 20010901)

"With its simple format and clear writing, Thrasher's book will appeal to younger students or those who are intimidated by literary assignments."
-- School Library Journal (July 2002) (School Library Journal 20020701)

"Clearly written, easy-to-understand book...A copious notes section, a section for further exploration, questions and ideas for themes and essays, and an appendix of literary criticism make this an invaluable teaching and/or library resource. Many black-and-white sketches, drawings, and photos create further interest in this...literary history."
-- School Library Journal (April 2001) (School Library Journal 20010401)

"Major characters are covered in detail, and minor characters in brief. Well-organized, prolific notes document chapters for ease in further research. The writing is informative and clear with no glaring biases. A useful tool for unlocking a literary masterpiece."
-- School Library Journal (April 2001) (School Library Journal 20010401)

"Each book includes biographical information; historical context; details about plot, characters, and themes; a chronology; source notes; and a bibliography. The literary criticism is lucid without being simplistic. For junior-high and high-school students as well as the adults interested in what teens read."
-- Booklist (March 2001) (Booklist 20010301)

From School Library Journal:

Grade 7-10-Mary Shelley's classic tale is studied in many schools, both as a representation of a 19th-century gothic novel and for its 19-year-old author's contribution to literature. In five short illustrated chapters, this slim book describes the story, the author's life, and her times. In addition, "Not One but Many Frankensteins" discusses variations on the monster theme. Black-and-white illustrations include depictions of Shelley, her husband, her parents, scenes from Frankenstein movies, and reproductions of artwork representing themes in the novel. The criticism is not as scholarly as that found in Harold Bloom's Mary Shelley (Chelsea, 1985; o.p.), but the text is easy to understand. A solid introduction for middle school students or for those requiring a less academic approach to this work.
Pat Bender, The Shipley School, Bryn Mawr, PA
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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