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Mary who wrote Frankenstein
2018
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Summary
The inspiring story of the girl behind one of the greatest novels -- and monsters -- ever, perfectly timed for the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein . For fans for picture book biographies such as I Dissent or She Persisted .

How does a story begin? Sometimes it begins with a dream, and a dreamer. Mary is one such dreamer, a little girl who learns to read by tracing the letters on the tombstone of her famous feminist mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, and whose only escape from her strict father and overbearing stepmother is through the stories she reads and imagines. Unhappy at home, she seeks independence, and at the age of sixteen runs away with poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, another dreamer. Two years later, they travel to Switzerland where they meet a famous poet, Lord Byron. On a stormy summer evening, with five young people gathered around a fire, Byron suggests a contest to see who can create the best ghost story. Mary has a waking dream about a monster come to life. A year and a half later, Mary Shelley's terrifying tale, Frankenstein: or, the Modern Prometheus , is published -- a novel that goes on to become the most enduring monster story ever and one of the most popular legends of all time.

A riveting and atmospheric picture book about the young woman who wrote one of the greatest horror novels ever written and one of the first works of science fiction, Mary Who Wrote Frankenstein is an exploration of the process of artistic inspiration that will galvanize readers and writers of all ages.
Trade Reviews
Booklist Review
*Starred Review* Though youngsters won't yet have delved into Mary Shelley's gothic horror classic, most will have been exposed to her piecemeal monster. Riffs such as Adam Rex's Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich (2006), Patrick McDonnell's The Monsters' Monster (2012), and Michael Hall's Frankencrayon (2016) are just a few of the picture books starring Shelley's creation; and let's not forget Jim Benton's Franny K. Stein series or Tim Burton's Frankenweenie film. Viewed in this eerie light, a picture-book biography on Shelley herself doesn't seem out of place, especially one so stunning as this. Bailey relates Shelley's childhood, rebellious adolescence, and participation in the now-famous writing competition that spawned the mad Dr. Frankenstein and his monster as a fantastic story in its own right. Her writing is warm and inclusive, posing occasional questions directly to the reader and establishing Shelley as a spirited dreamer. No less astonishing are Sardà's folk art-style illustrations, which employ deep, moody hues burgundy, plum, black, gray, and midnight blue to create hauntingly detailed scenes. Ghostly monsters waft through people's imaginations; dense trees lean and reach their branches toward Shelley's passing carriage; a dead frog sits upright when zapped with electricity. Readers will revel in this artful portrait of a celebrated young author and better appreciate the true brains behind the operation. A thorough afterword offers more details of Shelley's life.--Smith, Julia Copyright 2010 Booklist
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