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Monster

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3.27 of 5 stars 3.27  ·  rating details  ·  177 ratings  ·  50 reviews
The supernatural, unmissable new novel by the ALA Best Horror award nominee. In nineteenth-century Germany, one young man counts down the days until he can marry his beloved . . . until she is found brutally murdered, and the young man is accused of the crime. Broken on the wheel and left for dead, he awakens on a lab table, transformed into an abomination. Friedrich must ...more
ebook, 224 pages
Published August 1st 2012 by Overlook (first published 2012)
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(showing 1-30 of 506)
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karen

retellings work best when they pinpoint a lack in the original text; a moment that is ambiguous or a lapse in action where a story could have fallen through the cracks. but for this technique to work, the source material kind of has to remain intact.wide sargasso sea lays out "what led bertha to her attic prison madness??." windward heights asks "what happened during heathcliff's three years away, oh, and what if wuthering heights had taken place somewhere much warmer?" stress of her regard, whi
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Michael
Friedrich Hoffman (also known as the monster) recounts the false accusations of killing his fiancée and the other gruesome ‘crimes’ he has been accused of committing. He awoke hideously deformed on the table of Victor Frankenstein, without any real idea of what is going on. He now embarks on a single minded quest for revenge on Frankenstein for all the damage he has done.

This plot feels completely redundant; if you want to read a book from the perspective of Monster Frankenstein you read Franken
...more
Ben Gabriel
Dave Zeltserman is no Mary Shelley. When I read the blurb on this book, it sounded like a really neat premise. I'm a huge fan of Shelley's story and I thought this would be a cool companion piece. As I read 'Monster' I slowly realized how unnecessary this book was. The idea is great but it just didn't need to be done. Also, the book was very poorly written and just as poorly edited. The first person diary perspective was also poorly done and really detached me from the story. The books only savi ...more
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
You may also read my review here: http://www.mybookishways.com/2012/08/...

“As I write this, I can only pray that Frankenstein’s twisted soul is rotting away in whatever crevice within Hell it has surely sunk into.”

So begins Dave Zeltserman’s electrifying novel presenting the classic story of Frankenstein’s monster, from the viewpoint of the “monster.” The monster in this instance is a man by the name of Friedrich Hoffmann, who, on the eve of his wedding to his beloved Johanna is drugged and when
...more
Tim Mayer
Dave Zeltserman, author of the popular "Julius and Archie" mystery stories has unleashed his take on the Frankenstein genre. The entire book is told in the first person from the monster's point-of-view. We quickly learn that Victor Frankenstein was not the innocent scientist probing the secrets of life, but a twisted necromancer trying to create a super race. This isn't the first time someone has attempted a rewrite; Brian Aldiss did it in 1975 with Frankenstein Unbound. It's still a tale of the ...more
Jason



This novel is more an accompanying piece to the original, rather than one that occurs in parallel to the original plot, themes, etc.

An unreliable narrator is killed, forced to become something he does not— even in his worst nightmares—wish to become. In fact he takes an excessive amount of time trying to convince the reader that he retains some values, morals, and virtues of his former self, and in doing so does not effectively convince the reader of his morality, but to some extent convinces hi
...more
Junkie for the Written Word
I'm torn between 3 and 4 stars, so-so book and good book.

It's a short story and it is filled with intense anguish that only Frankenstein's Monster can radiate, so it's got that going for it.

On the other hand, meh, Frankenstein.

It's told from the Monster's perspective and how it all went down according to him and I really enjoyed parts of it, there was even some cannibalism, yay!

I guess if you really are in love with Frankenstein's creation story then you will LOVE this book. If, however, lik
...more
Roger
I was privileged to read this book in manuscript form. It is a brilliant reimagining of Frankenstein: faithful enough to delight lovers of Mary Shelley's masterpiece, but wonderfully inventive as it takes the monster (Friedrich Hoffmann)on a bloody quest for vengeance. As he hunts Victor Frankenstein he encounters vampyrs, monks, Satanists, and (memorably)the Marquis de Sade. By far Zeltserman's best work, and that's saying something.
Jack

I've been a long time fan of Zeltserman's crime fiction, and greatly enjoyed 'The Caretaker of Lorne Field, his first foray into the Horror genre. His newest novel, 'Monster', takes his fiction to a whole new level. While remaining faithful to the original in some ways, we're given a deeper, more focused monster whose motivations lead the reader through great leaps of imagination. A must read for fans of any genre.
Mark Jamison
Dave Zelsterman is a writer and a human being, so I don't want to be too harsh, but there are some seriously badly written sentences in this book. I started folding down pages and then just gave up. A first person narrator with(out) a bolt through his neck is no excuse for some of the sloppiness here. That said, the story itself is a fairly interesting take on the original Frankenstein. Still, it felt a little like Anne Rice Lite, and that's pretty "lite." There are some graphic ideas here, but ...more
Dystopian
The writing was good, and the premise was interesting, but introducing satanists and "vampyres" made me roll my eyes. Making Victor Frankenstein wholly evil misses the mark on one of the most interesting aspects of the original novel.
Marfita
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kate
Somewhat gratifying, but forgettable and not really necessary. A truly worthy retelling offers a fresh perspective on a well-known character. This simply puts Shelley's monster in a slightly different situation, much like your average fanfic. A lot of key plot turns and details felt too hasty. (SPOILERS) One rather important character's demise felt as though the author simply forgot about him until the last minute. I'm not a fan of what I call "monster buffets", and this was not a story in which ...more
Jo Butler
When I watch “Frankenstein,” the misery and longing in Boris Karloff’s eyes make me ache for the mute monster. Though it’s difficult to tell just how much the creature understands, he knows that a chasm separates him from the rest of humanity. And while Dr. Frankenstein claimed to be on a quest for knowledge, what really filled his mind beyond overwhelming pride and ambition?

Reading Mary Shelley’s masterpiece answers my questions. The doctor’s creature is both intelligent and articulate. Franken
...more
Max
Not only is this an excellently researched companion to Shelly's original novel, it is written in a completely complementary voice. While FRANKENSTEIN is written from the Doctor's point of view and details his experience, MONSTER is told from the creature's experience, and details one that in many ways is very different. Taking the position that the Doctor lied through his teeth in his deathbed confession and storytelling, MONSTER posits that the true beast was Victor himself and the creature no ...more
Zora
I'll admit, while I think amateur fanfic is a harmless pursuit, I'm put off by published spinoffs. I'd rather read original thinking about original characters, rather than mere mining of good fiction that has fallen into the public domain. Lately, there seems to be an epidemic of this, and in the few books I've tried lately, it's not done well. (In fact, I'm having a hard time calling to mind any spinoff novels that ever worked for me other than Wide Sargasso Sea, 1966 and Ryman's Was, 1992.) Bu ...more
Sarah
11/4 - The only exposure I've had to Frankenstein is through Kenneth Brannagh's movie version - I've never actually read the book (it's on my list). So I can't compare Zeltserman's writing to Shelley's and from reading other reviews I get the feeling this may be of benefit to me while I'm reading it. But, I don't have to have read Shelley's writing to be able to pick up the moments of awkwardness, they'll be visible to anyone reading this. Despite a few of those moments already, within 42 pages, ...more
Kim Heimbuch
Read my daughters full review of this book at http://www.musingwithcrayolakym.com/3...

My review- This was a great horrific twist on the Frankenstein novel we all grew up on and loved. Zeltersman kept true to the Shelley story while giving it his own unique morbid twist. This retelling has Victor Frankenstein out as a twisted individual from the start and is written from the perspective of the monster, in this case, Friedrich.
Friedrich is about to marry the love of his life but instead finds her

...more
Geenyas
Frankenstein's cognizant monster, vampires, devil worshippers and the Marquis de Sade? Sounds like a surefire hit -- but it seemed kinda silly at times. The first half of the book didn't quite gel for me, but once the monster caught up with Dr. Frankenstein and extracted his revenge, I was hooked. I ended up liking the last half of the book better than the first.
Debby
If you can get by the first page and you remember the old black and white Frankenstein movies of the '40's, this book will be quite an adventure. Herr Dr. Frankenstein is up to his old tricks along with his friends - a bevy of bored, wealthy, and sadistic aristocrats. Black magic, vampyres (old world spelling), disembodied heads that live on, among other Frankensteinesque characters, including a Marquis de Sade-type benefactor, are the "delightful" entities that "people" this story. There were a ...more
Linda
I like dark themed stories and that part does not disappoint. There are parts that are morbid and depraved, then there is a sweetness in some of the characters that make you remember that not everyone is sick in the head.

But....
I would have liked this book if the ending were better. I just hate when the ending ruins the book, and that's how I felt about this one. There is a build up. QUITE a build up, and then - nothing. It left me feeling like the author was already working on his next story an
...more
Allison Chao
Monster is a retelling of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. The writing is good, but I didn't enjoy the story as much as I thought I would. I have never read the classic or watched the movie. So, I thought this would be a great introduction to the story. This retelling is told from the monster's perspective. I enjoyed hearing about his story and background. Although it was sad, it was also interesting to know who the monster was before the abduction and transformation. Frankenstein was so horrible, a ...more
Brian Johnson
There was something about this book I had a problem with...not 100% sure why or what but it was something to do with the inclusion of the Marquis de Sade and how a lot of the book dealt with him and Victor's depraved sexual atrocities and Devil worship.
Though as a Frankenstein fan I did fully enjoy the twist on my fave story. I still feel the same sympathies for Friedrich--errr I mean the Monster ad I always have but liked seeing them in a new light.
Also some of the other coincidental meetings
...more
Lisa Kushner
Good idea but not so great execution. Didn't grab me the way I expected.
Wellington

This book is disgusting and depraved.

It's also one of the most brilliant books I've read in a while and loved it. It's basically the story of Frankenstein told by the monster. I was assigned to read Frankenstein in college and now recognize the Frankenstein as the doctor and not his creation.

The book is filled with of moral gray lines and morbid details to make you think. Like Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, it's not entirely clear who is the hero and villain. And also like Mary Shelley's Frankenst
...more
Kristen
Much better than I expected.
Alison
This was a quick, enjoyable twist on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. I read it in a day and a half, which speaks volumes about its suspense level (I'm an avid reader but usually not a fast one). At first, due to its length (a mere 200 pages), I thought it might be a YA book. As I read a bit, I came to the realization that I couldn't be more wrong due to the gore, language, and frequently sexuality.

Any horror fan would enjoy this book, but those who love Frankenstein would appreciate it more so.
Veronica
I really enjoyed this book. I was able to finish it in two days, and that really says something. I've never read Mary Shelley's work, but I think I will have to now. Although I was annoyed with the storyteller's repetitiveness at times, the story itself was quite intriguing. The fact that Frankenstein's monster was not a 'monster' really drew me to his tale. Supernatural and morbid elements kept my attention as well. I recommend.
Mercedes
This is the story of Frankenstein from the monster's point of view. It was very interesting and I enjoyed the character very much. He is likeable although ugly from the get go. He has a good heart and does good where-ever he goes except for killing one innocent. The book did keep building in the monster's quest for vengeance. I was a bit disappointed in the ending as he never did get the kind of vengeance I thought he should have.
Phair
Gave this 2 stars because I was able to finish it but overall this was a nasty book. (view spoiler) The final chapters were more to my taste and I could see where the author was going (view spoiler) but I can't say I enjoyed the journey.
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Shamus Award winner for JULIUS KATZ. Ellery Queen's Readers Choice Award winner for ARCHIE'S BEEN FRAMED. SMALL CRIMES named by NPR as one of the 5 best crime and mystery novels of 2008, Washington Post naming it also as one of the best novels of 2008. PARIAH named by the Washington Post as one of the best books of 2009. THE CARETAKER OF LORNE FIELD (2010) shortlisted by American Library Associati ...more
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