In Search of Mary Shelley: The Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein
Mary Shelley was brought up by her father in a house filled with radical thinkers, poets, philosophers and writers of the day. Aged sixteen, she eloped with Percy Bysshe Shelley, embarking on a relationship that was lived on the move across Britain and Europe. She coped with debt, infidelity and the deaths of three children, before early widowhood changed her life forever. Most astonishingly, it was while she was still a teenager that Mary composed her canonical novel Frankenstein, creating two of our most enduring archetypes.
Fiona Sampson's book shows the real woman behind the story. She uncovers a complex, generous character – friend, intellectual, lover and mother – trying to fulfil her own passionate commitment to writing at a time when to be a woman writer was an extraordinary and costly anomaly.
Fiona Sampson is a prize-winning poet and writer. She has been published in more than thirty languages and has received an MBE for services to literature. A Fellow of the Royal Society for Literature, and the recipient of a number of national and international honours for her poetry, she has worked as an editor, translator, and university professor as well as a violinist.