Frankissstein

Jeanette Winterson. Grove, $27 (352p) ISBN 978-0-8021-2949-9
Winterson (The Gap of Time) reimagines literary classic Frankenstein—both the story and the genesis of it—in her magnificent latest. The book shuttles back and forth between 1816, when a challenge leads Mary Shelley to write her indelible character and the monster he creates, and the present day, when a transgender man named Ry Shelley delves deeper into the burgeoning world and industry surrounding robotics and AI. A medical doctor, Ry supplies body parts to the professor Victor Stein, a brilliant if elusive man whose vision of the future is one in which human intelligence can transcend the limitations of needing a physical body. Victor’s interest in Ry is multifold: there is what Ry can procure for him through hospitals, and there is attraction—both romantic and platonic interest in the physical manifestation of Ry’s gender identity, which Victor calls “future-early” and Ry calls “doubleness.” Winterson’s recreation of the story of Mary Shelley’s creative process and later life and work is splendid, but it’s the modern analogue of the famous Lake Geneva party that is truly inspired. There is the hilariously crass sexbot entrepreneur Ron Lord, the evangelical capitalist Claire, and the nosy nuisance of Vanity Fair reporter Polly D, who’s constantly convinced she’s on to something. This vividly imagined and gorgeously constructed novel will have readers laughing out loud—and then pondering their personhood and mortality on the next page. Agent: Caroline Michel; Peters, Fraser & Dunlop. (Oct.)
Reviewed on : 07/23/2019
Release date: 10/01/2019
Genre: Fiction
Hardcover - 352 pages - 978-0-7352-7969-8
Compact Disc - 978-1-09-402430-1
MP3 CD - 978-1-09-402431-8
Paperback - 978-0-8021-4939-8
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