In search of Mary Shelley

by Sampson, Fiona,

Format: Print Book 2018
Availability: Available at 9 Libraries 9 of 9 copies
Available (9)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Allegheny Non-Fiction Collection PR5398.S255 2018x
Location  CLP - Allegheny
Collection  Non-Fiction Collection
Call Number  PR5398.S255 2018x
CLP - Squirrel Hill Non-Fiction Collection PR5398.S255 2018x
Location  CLP - Squirrel Hill
Collection  Non-Fiction Collection
Call Number  PR5398.S255 2018x
Monroeville Public Library Non-fiction 823.7 SHELLEY
Location  Monroeville Public Library
Collection  Non-fiction
Call Number  823.7 SHELLEY
Mt. Lebanon Public Library Non-Fiction 813 SHELLEY Mary
Location  Mt. Lebanon Public Library
Collection  Non-Fiction
Call Number  813 SHELLEY Mary
Northland Public Library Biography B SHELLEY
Location  Northland Public Library
Collection  Biography
Call Number  B SHELLEY
Oakmont Carnegie Library Biography B SHE
Location  Oakmont Carnegie Library
Collection  Biography
Call Number  B SHE
Pleasant Hills Public Library Nonfiction 92 SHELLEY Mary
Location  Pleasant Hills Public Library
Collection  Nonfiction
Call Number  92 SHELLEY Mary
Sewickley Public Library Biography B SHELLEY 2018
Location  Sewickley Public Library
Collection  Biography
Call Number  B SHELLEY 2018
Upper St. Clair Township Library Non-fiction 823 SHELLEY BIO/CRIT   
Location  Upper St. Clair Township Library
Collection  Non-fiction
Call Number  823 SHELLEY BIO/CRIT   
Coinciding with the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein in 1818, a prize-winning poet delivers a major new biography of Mary Shelley?as she has never been seen before.

We know the facts of Mary Shelley's life in some detail--the death of her mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, within days of her birth; the upbringing in the house of her father, William Godwin, in a house full of radical thinkers, poets, philosophers, and writers; her elopement, at the age of seventeen, with Percy Shelley; the years of peripatetic travel across Europe that followed. But there has been no literary biography written this century, and previous books have ignored the real person--what she actually thought and felt and why she did what she did--despite the fact that Mary and her group of second-generation Romantics were extremely interested in the psychological aspect of life.

In this probing narrative, Fiona Sampson pursues Mary Shelley through her turbulent life, much as Victor Frankenstein tracked his monster across the arctic wastes. Sampson has written a book that finally answers the question of how it was that a nineteen-year-old came to write a novel so dark, mysterious, anguished, and psychologically astute that it continues to resonate two centuries later. No previous biographer has ever truly considered this question, let alone answered it.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "*Starred Review* Too often relegated to the sidelines by her famous parents, radical philosophers Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin, and husband, Romantic poet extraordinaire Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary Shelley nevertheless left an enduring mark on literary history with the publication of Frankenstein in 1818. True to its subtitle, this biography focuses on the influences in her life that culminated in her creation of the creature. Mary's unconventional childhood; the death of her mother; her marriage to the free-thinking, often free-loving Shelley; and the tragic loss of her husband and three of her children are all given their due. The birth of Frankenstein is credited to a challenge initiated by Lord Byron to write ghost stories. Combining gothic, romantic, and horror elements, Mary spun an indelible tale that has spanned centuries, genres, and mediums. Plumbing her formative years as well as the depths of her psyche for clues, Sampson chronicles the circumstances and events that preceded her subject's extraordinarily imaginative leap into new literary horizons. Unfortunately, most of Mary's private letters and journals did not survive; however, this lack of primary source material does not detract from the fascinating story of the inner workings and motivations of a genius well ahead of her time on the 200th anniversary of her masterpiece.--Flanagan, Margaret Copyright 2010 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "To mark the bicentennial of Frankenstein's publication, poet Sampson (Limestone Country) has created an incisive and emotionally resonant portrait of Mary Shelley, the brilliant woman who wrote that dark masterpiece. In an often speculative but persuasive portrait of Shelley's inner and outer life, Sampson takes Shelley out of the shadow of her prodigious, radical parents, Mary Wollstonecraft and William Godwin, and her husband, the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. Wollstonecraft died soon after giving birth to Mary, and Sampson argues that the search for a mother figure never ended for Shelley, who maintained an antagonistic relationship with her stepmother, and drew close to female friends of her mother later in life. Themes of birth, death, and creativity permeated both Shelley's writing and her life. She experienced loss on an almost unimaginable scale, including the deaths of three of her four children in their youth, and yet persevered in her dream of being a writer. Because so much of Shelley's early correspondence was lost, Sampson often relies on conjecture to get inside her subject's mind and feelings. This approach may not be to everyone's taste, but it creates an almost cinematic picture of long-ago events and succeeds in bringing an unconventional woman to vivid life. Agent: George Lucas, InkWell Management. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, -- 1797-1851.
Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, -- 1797-1851 -- Criticism and interpretation.
Women authors -- Biography.
Authors, English -- 19th century -- Biography.
Publisher New York :Pegasus Books,2018
Edition First Pegasus Books hardcover edition.
Language English
Notes "The girl who wrote Frankenstein"--Cover.
Description xii, 304 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 251-294) and index.
ISBN 9781681777528
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