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Mary Shelley intended her book to intrigue and instil fear in the reader. How does she achieve this?

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Introduction

Mary Shelley intended her book to 'intrigue and instil fear in the reader'. How does she achieve this? Matt Jones Frankenstein is an original, remarkable and disturbing book all at once. Due to its insights into the nature of humans and their needs, in Frankenstein they are expressed in the form of a creature created by the most undesirable method. The novel touches several powerful and contradictory themes including; love and hate, beauty and ugliness, innocence and guilt, compassion and hard-heartedness. Many of these themes also relate to bigger, key events throughout the novel: the strife for new knowledge and discovery, justice and prejudice and mainly isolation. As the book is part of the romanticism era, it focuses more on personal feelings and consequences of them rather than logic or reason. The reader gets a feeling that all the disastrous ins and outs of this novel are caused by forgotten reason, overindulgent thoughts or a heart over head approach to everything. The fact it's written as an Epistolary gives the reader a more personal approach to the characters. But the less obvious under tonal qualities of the novel mustn't be overlooked either, in addition to the strong, dominant gothic tone of darkness or gloom, there are moments during the story of light and hope, joy and enchantment, and love and pleasure, but following the gothic theme, are almost always destroyed by unfortunate events that occur. ...read more.

Middle

One of which is Walton's intense desire for discovery and the unknown, so far so that he would risk his life. His fateful meeting with Victor also provides us with a slight respite from the depressive language he is using to describe his journey, he found the companion he had longed for. Before the reader hears Victor's story, many questions are raised, for example; what was he pursuing before they found him? And was it the mysterious, gigantic creature Walton and his crew say the day before? All will be revealed when Walton tells him off the figure they saw a few days ago, with those words 'a new life animated his decaying frame'. A great effect used by Mary Shelley in this novel is the use of a Chinese box narrative, a kind of narration with two or more persons telling their own story. It starts of with Walter, an explorer, writing to his sister. His ship gets stuck and he goes outside only to find Victor Frankenstein. Victor is in a bad way, dying in fact, and so tells Walton his story. Halfway through Victor's narrative, he creates the creature, which comes in, and tells his account. Then Victor comes back to conclude his tale, and the book finishes with Walton summing up, adding his own opinions, and writing to his sister again. ...read more.

Conclusion

and flowing; his teeth of pearly whiteness; but these luxuriance's only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes' that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and his straight black lips.' This description uses imagery to help create an image of monster inside the readers head which works to perfection as the reader is repulsed at the thought. In conclusion, many themes are often included in literature in order to provide more meaning and a better understanding for readers. But in Frankenstein Shelley conveys lots of different themes; some which are quite obvious and others that are more subtle. The novel also shows us how appearances are not always a clear representation of the person who's underneath (the way the monster was judged solely by his looks). Also, the fact there are also many different narrative voices in the novel help the reader appeal to different characters, and also show how the character's personalities evolve as the plot goes on. The fact the novel was written by a woman in a time when writing was almost solely dominated by men was enough but the fact it was such a huge success was down the way Shelley intrigued people and instilled fear. At the time it was written I personally feel that no-one would have been able to put it down. ...read more.

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