Gris Grimly's Frankenstein
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Gris Grimly's Frankenstein

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  1,870 ratings  ·  68 reviews
Gris Grimly, the New York Times bestselling artist and creator of the beloved Edgar Allan Poe's Tales of Mystery and Madness, has long considered Mary Shelley's classic tale of terror to be one of his greatest inspirations. He is now paying homage to it with a lavishly illustrated full-length adaptation, the first of its kind in this or any format. The tale of the hubris o...more
ebook, 208 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Balzer + Bray
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Gris Grimly’s vision of Shelley’s 19th-century work hews faithfully to the literary text. It is ghastly, grisly, horrific and often moving. The sympathy lies with the monster but we feel for Frankenstein as well, beset as he is by remorse, fits of mania and an ardent, pitiful desire to have affection and love in his life. The tie between creator and creation becomes very distinct as Mr. Grimley’s illustrations evoke their mutual frustrations, searches and yearnings.

The monster’s story is particu...more
Gris Grimly, known as a Gorey-esqe illustrator of macabre tales, masterfully adapts Shelley’s original and famously dense story of Frankenstein, the doomed mad scientist, to the graphic novel format. The first chapter is prefaced by a series of handwritten letters, drafted in sepia ink on aged parchment, and the novel unveils in text interspersed between drawings, some nearly full-page, others in neat little blocks, in washes of sepia, drab olive, and inky black splashed with vitriolic bright gr...more
Gris Grimly has taken a classic horror and turned it into something hauntingly beautiful and amazing. There's an afterword at the back of this book by Grimly; he talks about how 'Frankenstein fans tend to be dishevelled, crude, rebellious and all while feeling misunderstood.' I think that defines everything I feel about the story and the book. And it definitely makes me a Frankenstein fan.

Frankenstein is a young man, eager to make his impact on the world. But as he studies the sciences further a...more
Wiebke (1book1review)
This was the perfect combination of text and illustration. The tedious long winded writing that stopped my enjoyment of the original novel was replaced by engaging images. The atmosphere created by the original text passages and Grimly's illustrations told the story in a vivid and capturing way I missed in the full novel.
I found myself immersed in the story and world and just flew through it.
I can recommend this to fans of the novel as well as to people struggling with the full length text, or...more
Julia Reynolds
First off, I’m a big big fan of the original Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley. It’s brilliant. It’s frightening. It’s believable and intellectual and classic, it gives you chills, makes you feel for this monster, then makes you despise him, then makes you feel for him again. It’s a story of despair and hope, of what it means to be human, to be real, to have a soul and deserve pity, compassion, companionship, etc. It’s a story about what it means to be evil, to be created bl...more
BAYA Librarian
Gris Grimly, known as a Gorey-esqe illustrator of macabre tales, masterfully adapts Shelley’s original story of the doomed mad scientist Frankenstein to the graphic novel format. The first chapter is prefaced by a series of handwritten letters, drafted in sepia ink on aged parchment. From there the novel unfurls in text interspersed between drawings in washes of sepia, drab olive, inky black splashed with vitriolic green, languid mauve, fleshy pink, and blood red. The illustrations wander betwee...more
As a fan of Gothic literature, movies, and haunting dark stories, I have always been drawn to the story of Frankenstein, though I'd not thought about it that way until recently. I've seen various movies, own the soundtrack to the beautifully haunting musical, and have read the book itself countless times. I had followed Mr. Grimly's progress of this book with hungry anticipation via his blog (http://grisgrimlysfrankenstein.blogsp...), and when I found out that the book was out, I could not wait...more
Frankenstein is one of my all time favourite books. Like many, I came to it with the old movie versions in my head (back in my mid-teens) so was somewhat surprised to find out how affecting it truly was, unlike anything I was expecting. I guess at the time I related to the sense of isolation and frustration the monster feels and the humanity he's not allowed to experience (teenage angst!). The dense somewhat tricky prose has always required patience but there's so much to like in the book and it...more
I was familiar with the story of Franenstein before I read Gris Grimly's illustrated adaptation, but I had never had the urge to pick up the full novel. Mary Shelley's prose is a bit too grandiose for me to want to read casually, so this short version - which uses chyunks of, but not all, of the text - is much more approachable. Most of the story is told clearly enough through the illustrations (which are wonderfully monstrous), so the text can almost be entirely forgone. What the illustrated ve...more
Constance Shepardson
This is one of the purest adaptations I have ever seen. Instead of altering Mary Shelley's original text, Grimly streamlines it. By pairing Shelley's scenes with his own SteamPunk/Gothic cross over style makes the text accessible to a whole new audience. Readers aren't confronted with huge blocks of early Victorian language, instead they see bright red script letters, comic-style block image dialog, and a touching rendition of the Creature's story - a piece of the novel often excluded in adaptat...more
Reading Teen
Loved this so much! The illustrations are freaky and fantastic! I'd never read Frankenstein before so I'm glad this book actually got me to read the story. Awesome!
This story for me is more of a 3, because Frankenstein is a bit...meh (read: an interesting concept, clearly, but usually arduous to read). However, the illustrations are a 5 without a doubt. Gris Grimly draws like the lovechild of Edward Gorey and Egon Schiele raised on a steady diet of Tim Burton endeavors. I could stare at his creations all day!

The books is less of a traditional graphic novel told through sequential panels and often more of an illustrated chapter book for adults with the occ...more
Graphic Novel adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein with original language and gothy steampunk illustrations. I quite liked it --very different from the Frankenstein of my childhood --old black and white and Abbott and Costello. The psychological aspect was really emphasized in the text format over the film version I think. Although it has been a long time since I've seen any Frankenstein movie. I really liked the author's note explaining what lessons he got from the story and how those have...more
I had never heard of Gris Grimly, and his illustrations are really powerful. He has interwoven his artwork with the actual text of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, which I really appreciated. This is an abridgement, not an adaptation, so the power of the original writing is still there.

The opening quote from Paradise Lost still chills me: "Did I request Thee, Maker, from my clay to mould me man? Did I solicit thee from darkness to promote me?" And this is the image from Grimly for that illustration...more
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids

I'm a fan of Frankenstein. Some of the YA adaptations that have come from the classic story. I love the series The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein Book lI, that Kenneth Oppel has written, and I even enjoyed a recent release, Hideous Love, which is about Mary Shelley. Both of these are fabulous adaptations. When I received this book, I was intrigued by it. I've never read anything of Gris's before, but I've heard good things about his work. This book, much like any other Frankenstein story...more
I confess, I don't actually own a dead-tree copy of Frankenstein. I own about 7 different ebook versions from different publishers, but I don't have a version to consult on, say, a random Friday night when I decide to read Grimly's graphic novel version.
So I can't comment on the fidelity to the text, though the adaptation seemed to consist predominantly of excerpting rather than rewriting. The biggest change--and the best, in my humble opinion--was that Grimly told the creature's story almost so...more
Melissa Mcavoy
A philosopher’s stone, an elixir of life, visions of immortality and power: Victor Frankenstein had wildly unrealistic dreams. When studying at University he acquires the tools to penetrate the mysteries of the human body and becomes obsessed. Toiling among the unhallowed damps of the grave he attempts to create a living being: a filthy creation spawned by the charnel house and the dissecting room. His success plunges him into a nightmare of sublime torment and tragedy he struggles to escape.


The only reason this book got an okay is because the text is Mary Shelley's. I have a lot of beef with this book, and that may be because I am a bit of a literary snob. But please, hear me out. This is a graphic representation of Shelley's classic. In case you're not familiar with the story, Viktor Frankenstein creates a living body from dead ones. He freaks out when it comes alive and runs away; the creature must fend for itself and although he isn't inherently evil, takes...more
Bibliomanic Marley
Given the fact that I have not read Mary Shelly's original tale of Frankenstein, I cannot make a clear comparison of the two books that share a similar story. However, I did appreciate the art style that Grimly had to offer throughout his alternative version of the tale. I found it interesting, to be told the tale from the perspective of Victor's creation of this being so desolate of any kind of human affection or remorse for his ghastly existence, forever to be abhorred by his own creator. Albe...more
I read Frankenstein years ago. I think I was like 18 or 19 when I did it and it scared the crap out of me in some parts. I'd completely forgotten just how sad it was though. This is such a great retelling with wonderful illustrations and I think it's fantastic that some kids who might never read the story are compelled to do so because it's in this awesome, gothic, dark fairytale graphic novel form.
What a brilliant reimagining of a classic tale! I am officially a fan and will be adding his Poe and Irving books to my collection. I had to read Frankenstein in college and struggled through the more grandiose flourishes. Mathis version, with it's darkly streampunkish illustrations made the story more vivid and alive. A must for teachers trying to interest their students in classic literature.
Alissa Noe

Gris Grimly tells the classic tale of Frankenstein in this captivating graphic novel. Alphonse Frankenstein, a zealous intellectual, uncovers the secret to creating human life. He is quick to find, however, that the creature he created only brings misery and destruction to his life. The story explores the depths of human nature, and the consequence of playing God.
I was really taken back at how the graphics of this novel were able to coincide with Shelly's mature depicti...more
I liked this book for the illustrations alone. They were phenomenal. I've never seen anything else by Gris Grimly, but I'm going to have to check her out more. So detailed. Anyways. My one complaint is about the frame, when they're on the ship explaining the background. I couldn't for the life of me read the writing so I ended up skipping those parts. Obviously I've read Mary Shelley's Frankenstein so I knew what was up the whole time but I was a bit disappointed with that aspect.
This is the first I have seen of Gris Grimly, but what a solid first impressions it is!

I have never before picked up Mary Shelley's Frankenstein though I have been meaning to for years and will have to now that I know what a truly gripping story it is.

Grimly's illustrations and selectively added text from Shelley's work blend together so perfectly you would have thought Shelley and Grimly commissioned this book together originally.

While Grimly keeps the haunting, dark text Shelley is famous fo...more
A few years ago I read Frankenstein but found Shelley's prose difficult to penetrate. My mind wandered as I read and nothing stuck. Now thanks to Gris Grimly I finally know what Mary Shelley was going on about. Grimly's graphic novel uses an abridged version of Shelley's text. Taken in bite-sized chunks, Shelley's writing is easy to digest. Grimly's illustrations are idiosyncratic (i.e., strange) to say the least but his style grew on me and the illustrations did help propel the story along.

I loved this adaptation! I'm a fan of Grimly's artistic style anyway, and I love the look he chose for this. Vaguely steampunk Gothic really works with a story of mad science.

I also love the mostly wordless black and white panels in the section where the Creature is telling his story.
A masterful graphic novel adaptation that is much more faithful to the original than most "regular" adaptations. Brilliant, but I would expect nothing less from the fabulous Gris Grimly. Can't WAIT for his Sherlock Holmes.
Gris Grimly gives a stark, Steampunk twist to an old favorite. Beautifully illustrated and true to the original. I don't think I ever actually finished reading the original book, but Grimly makes the epistolary novel come alive. I was often reminded of Tim Burton's movies, which isn't a bad thing at all.
Excellent graphic novel. I read the original Frankenstein in college. This version may not follow the story exactly, but I felt pulled into the story. The drawings were fantastic. They evoked feelings for and against all of the characters portrayed. Well worth the read.
Jennie Smith
Loved this graphic novel! This is going to be great to pair with the original text for my struggling readers! Loved it!!
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Gris Grimly is an artist and storyteller who is based in the Los Angeles area best known for his darkly whimsical children's books.
More about Gris Grimly...
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