{Prime} Frankissstein: A Love Story Author Jeanette Winterson – Vansonphu.com

Frankissstein: A Love Story Have you ever read a book where you have to keep re reading paragraphs or even entire pages not because your mind drifted and you don t know what you just read, but because you do know what you read and it delighted you so much I haven t come across many writers who do that for me Jeanette Winterson is an exception and Frankissstein is one of those books Reading this book gave my brain a fantastic jolt on just about every page, a flood of dopamine and serotonin repeatedly washed through my brain The sheer exquisiteness of the prose, the ingenious metaphors, and the philosophical aspects of the story delighted me immensely.This is the story of Mary Shelley writing Frankenstein It is the story of Ry Shelley, a transgender doctor living in the present day It is the story of Lord Byron, Ron Lord, Dr Polidori, Polly D, Victor Frankenstein and Victor Stein, a scientist developing AI Jeanette Winterson takes us on a journey to the past and into the future, masterfully weaving the stories of all these individuals This novel is Winterson s monster Pieced together from the history of Mary Shelley writing the classic Frankenstein, the plot of aforementioned classic and a new storyline focusing on artificial intelligence, Winterson has unevenly sewn together different components and brought them to life well, at least partly The author is a God like figure in her own narrative universe, so you could argue that Winterson is also a modern Prometheus which is the subtitle of Frankenstein In order to explore the human urge to create life and submit nature versus the longing to be seen and loved as an imperfect, but unique person, Winterson jumps around between timelines and personnel, juxtaposing, mirroring and paralleling different ideas and even characters.The first narrative thread tells the story of author Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, who fell in love and ran away with Percy Bysshe Shelley She crafted the outline for Frankenstein at Lake Geneva, where the couple stayed with Lord Byron, his doctor Polidori, and Mary s stepsister Claire Clairmont who was pregnant from Byron Mary herself lost many children, which is interesting considering that she wrote a classic ab What an unexpected mid winter highlight After casting aside all my should be reading books I decided to bust my way out of a reading slump by picking up this new book by Jeanette Winterson an author I have never read This was a particularly risky undertaking given my recent tussle with another author who also decided to play with robots I am not saying that book spectacularly failed but it wasn t great.Winterson s novel is a delightful treat for readers who have ever wondered about the potential for sexbots to take over the world I don t think I have ever laughed for the entirety of two straight chapters before, but good Lord Ron Lord I am making this book sound like a comedy but it isn t It is just that Winterson does humorously salacious excruciatingly well Frankisstein is such an orgy of ideas In no particular order it is an homage to Frankenstein, a thought experiment on what it means to be human and or post human A primer on cryopreservation, a lovely recognition of female scientists yes Rosalind Franklin and your valuable contribution to discovering DNA a biography of the Shelleys, and a novel with a central transgender character Opinions may vary on if this all works together, for me it did I accepted this novel as a very I wasn t sure what to expect from this title as I have never read the classic Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, however it made little difference to the fun I had in reading this retelling of sorts.Mostly it s about Mary Shelley and her sad back story of children lost to disease in her short relationship with her husband Percy, and also about the writing of the story of her monster Frankenstein and then it flips to our modern day search for eternal or extended life Most of the modern characters are quirky and the story focuses upon the trans lead character Ry, their own past and struggles with the present as those around them seek to build a better world, irrespective of the morality of their endeavours It s a hodgepodge of ideas and I don t claim to have understood them all but I have certainly thought a lot I am what I am But what I am is not one thin, not one gender I live with doubleness What is your substance, whereof you are made,That millions of strange shadows on you tend The book takes place in two timelines The first starts in 1816 and in the rainy mid year months in Geneva a bored group of Lord Byron, Mary Shelley, her then lover and future husband Percy Shelley, Mary s stepsister Claire Clairmont Byron s lover and Byron s doctor Polidori, agree on a challenge to write a ghost story the famous genesis of Mary s novel Frankenstein As an aside, given this is a book where the author seems unable to see a parallel without cramming into the already overladen plot, I was surprised that some modern day climate change link was not drawn with the volcanic eruption induced year without a summer of 1816 The second is in Modern day Brexit UK and Trumpian US, and an unlikely group Ron Lord an increasingly successful producer of sexbots , Ma Ry an Shelley a young transgender doctor, Clare the PA to the owner of a cryonics facility, Polly Dory a Vanity Fair journalist coalesce around Victor Stein an artificial intelligence visionary who is turning his TED talks into practice by reanimating human limbs and even heads as an interim stage towards advancing cryonics into the downloading of human minds Ron is interested in investing and in seeing if there is an angle for his sexbots, Polly in getting an interview and scoop, Claire in ensuring a Christian angle to the 4.5 Highly entertaining. I m ashamed to admit I ve only read one Jeanette Winterson book Lighthousekeeping But it was wonderful, so I m excited to try this one out, looks like loads of interesting topics. As soon as I heard about this book I knew I would love it, and I can now safely say that that was an understatement Frankenstein is my favourite novel of all time and Mary Shelley is one of my personal heroes, so to have an author as talented as Jeanette Winterson take on a homage retelling whatever you want to call it of both the novel and Shelley s own life was truly a dream come true This novel is half a fictionalised but seemingly accurate, once you ve read a bit about her life and character account of Mary Shelley s experiences conceiving and writing Frankenstein, full of insight into what being stuck in a house with the Young Romantics must have felt like The other half is set in the present day where the transmasculine main character, Dr Ry Shelley, is exploring the world of AI and robotics alongside the genius scientist Victor Stein They are surrounded by a cast of other characters who bear connections to the people around Mary Shelley in the other half of the novel The two halves switch chapter by chapter The modern sections are where Winterson gets to play around with the complex sciences and pseudosciences of cryogenics, artificial intelligence, computing, sex robots From One Of The Most Gifted Writers Working Today New York Times Comes An Audacious New Novel About The Bodies We Live In And The Bodies We Desire In Brexit Britain, A Young Transgender Doctor Called Ry Is Falling In Love Against Their Better Judgement With Victor Stein, A Celebrated Professor Leading The Public Debate Around AI.Meanwhile, Ron Lord, Just Divorced And Living With Mum Again, Is Set To Make His Fortune Launching A New Generation Of Sex Dolls For Lonely Men Everywhere.Across The Atlantic, In Phoenix, Arizona, A Cryogenics Facility Houses Dozens Of Bodies Of Men And Women Who Are Medically And Legally Dead But Waiting To Return To Life.But The Scene Is Set In 1816, When Nineteen Year Old Mary Shelley Writes A Story About Creating A Non Biological Life FormBeware, For I Am Fearless And Therefore Powerful What Will Happen When Homo Sapiens Is No Longer The Smartest Being On The Planet Jeanette Winterson Shows Us How Much Closer We Are To That Future Than We Realise Funny And Furious, Bold And Clear Sighted, Frankissstein Is A Love Story About Life Itself. What fun This book is really about the future of the human soul, but it is so much fun that it is never weighed down by the deep philosophical questions that it raises.

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