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3.19  ·  Rating Details ·  336 Ratings  ·  65 Reviews
Veronica Bennett's lush reimagining of the life of Mary Shelley — on the eve of her authorship of the classic gothic novel Frankenstein — is a gripping story of love and obsession.

In the spring of 1814, poet Percy Shelley enters the life of young Mary
Godwin like an angel of deliverance. Seduced by his radical and romantic
ideas, she flees with him and her stepsister to Eu
Hardcover, 234 pages
Published May 9th 2006 by Candlewick Press (first published October 3rd 2005)
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Arec Rain
Apr 21, 2011 Arec Rain rated it it was ok
I am just going to come out and say that I though this novel was terrible. Not because it was written poorly or because it was unbelievable, but because it just made one feel depressed and dark reading it.

After reading the description, I was excited to read a fictional novel about how Mary and Percy Shelley cam e together, and how Mary received her inspiration for Frankenstein. From page one, however, it was hard to push through the pages. It wasn’t until Percy came in around the second chapter
May 25, 2010 Violet rated it did not like it
I've had this book on my shelf for a while, but decided to wait until I finished reading Frankenstein. And now that I've had, I'm ready to read this book.


Okay, I didn't like this book at all. I got to page 66 when I was like screw it, I'm dropping this thing like a rotten potato. Here are the reasons why:
1) Frankenstein had way better writing, and while this writing is not that bad, it's not that good either.
2) The author changed Mary's history. And while it was okay, and I got's was
Aug 25, 2009 Wealhtheow rated it liked it
Shelves: historical, ya, regency
a fictional, though fairly historically accurate, take on Mary Shelley's early life. Mary falls in love with titled, nearly penniless poet Percy Shelley, and runs away with him. They, and her step-sister Jane/Claire Clairemont, live lives full of poetry and squalid emotional scenes amidst a sea of dead babies, suicides, and affairs. Their lives were amazingly tragic, but Bennett mostly manages to keep the book on an even keel. My one problem with this book was the constant, heavy-handed foreshad ...more
Feb 28, 2013 Jen rated it did not like it
I usually refrain from reviewing Young Adult books I don't like, because I know I'm not the book's intended audience. But this novel was so awful, I'm writing a review just to purge it from my mind. BEGONE, Angelmonster! After enjoying The Countess so thoroughly, I wanted to read another novelization of a historical figure's life. I regret that I chose Angelmonster, Veronica Bennett's telling of tumultuous relationship between Mary Shelley and Percy Bysshe Shelley.

We all know that Mary Shelley w
Jun 17, 2008 Carrie-anne rated it it was ok
I was totally psyched to find this book in the Harvard Book Store basement. Mary Shelley led a fascinating (albeit incredibly sad) life, which I read all about back when I wrote my college thesis. Writing a novel about her elopement with Percy Shelley, the deaths of their kids, the death of his wife, the death of her sister, his death (I said it was really sad), and, of course, the writing of Frankenstein, seemed like it could make a fascinating book. And Veronica Bennett is a college English pr ...more
Jan 07, 2008 Nan rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erin Sterling
Wow, I did not like this book at all. I found the writing terrible, the characters inane, and the plot just strange and totally different from what I thought. The story is a teenage romance/drama about Mary Shelley's scandalous life, from age sixteen when she ran off with the poet Shelley when he was already married to having multiple babies and she starts thinking up her own plot (to become Frankenstein) based on demons and stories she's heard. I thought the story would be more fantastical and ...more
May 09, 2010 Kari rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 04, 2007 Kirsty rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
perhaps I am biased by my existing fascination with Mary Shelley's life, but I adored this book. it was tragic, wonderful, and inspiring; but not in an awful Chicken Soup for the Soul way. this is the perfect way to find out a bit about the life of Mary Shelley (incidentally, my hero). this is the perfect bit of easy-to-read background after reading Frankenstein.
Aug 01, 2007 Kelly rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, historicalfiction
-A ruined reputation without a doubt is the only kind to have(Mary, p.55).
Kimber Lybbert
Mar 22, 2017 Kimber Lybbert rated it liked it
A decent enough little read, and reasonably accurate as historical fiction goes.
Sep 21, 2013 Anna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Isabelle Sanchez
Jul 24, 2009 Isabelle Sanchez rated it it was amazing
This book is one of my favorite book that I ever read because it made me feel as if I were looking at the lives of the people that the book was about. It made me feel as if I were in the book. This book had a mixture of feelings that gave you many thoughts to think about. This book was about this 16-year old girl, whose father owned a book shop and a little house above it. The main character was the 16- year old girl named Mary. Mary had two sisters named Jane and Fanny. Her Papa had accepted Ma ...more
Feb 02, 2011 Christie rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
Veronica Bennett reimagines the life of Mary Shelley, author of the novel Frankenstein, in her novel AngelMonster. It is 1814 and Mary is a smart but dreamy 16 year old. She and her sister, Jane, often imagine finding true love with a poet because as Mary remarks, “a poet is the only acceptable sort of lover these days.”

Jane and I had often discussed the possibility of falling in love with a poet. If poetry was any measure of a man, we had observed, everything we longed for in a lover – romance,
Mar 17, 2014 Kate rated it liked it
This is the story of Mary Shelley, from the time when she was a young girl and falls in love with the married Percy Shelley, through the writing of Frankenstein, completed after Shelley's death.

I had hoped this would be a lot more about Frankenstein than it was, although the idea returns to Mary again and again over the book. I was under the misconception that she had written it during the time she lived at the Villa Diodati with Shelley, Byron, and her half-sister Jane/Claire. It was during th
After reading Veronica Bennett's fictional biography of Jane Austen, Cassandra's Sister, I went looking for more of her books.
Thinking that Angelmonster, the fictional account/bio of Mary Shelley, would be just as good, I picked up the book without looking at any reviews-bad idea.
Angelmonster is the story of Mary Shelley, the author of one of the greatest known horror stories in history.
Mary was the daughter of an English radical, and due to the death of
Jul 10, 2011 Rebecca rated it it was ok
Disappointing novelization of the life of Mary Shelley. Yes, I know the author of 'Frankenstein' had a rough life but, from reading this book, you'd think she'd never had any fun either.

At 16, Mary runs away with the poet, Percy Shelley. The fact that he's already married and broke doesn't stop her. There must have been something between them, some great romance, but Bennett fails to capture it. The reader is left puzzling over why any girl with sense, even an impressionable teenager, would fall
Jun 06, 2011 Darcy rated it liked it
Mary Shelley was obviously a terrible judge of character, because apparently everyone around her life used and abused her. This novel suggests, initially, that Shelley is a victim of her own youth and upbringing, and her judgments were based on her desire for Percy Shelley (who should find a special place in Hell, if half of what he did were true).
I'm not sure how much of this is fact or fiction, but it's engaging, nonetheless. The story begins a little slowly and stereotypically (beautiful, st
Dec 17, 2014 Sally rated it really liked it
I did not expect to like this book; I'm not one for romance stories, but seeing as it's based on the true life relationship of Percy Bysshe Shelley and Mary Wollstonecraft (Mary Shelley) I had to give it a shot. I know that it's fictionalised, by its written really authentically.

I'm SO pleased I did. What a tale her life was. I was raging at Percy's attitude and actions (I would have sent him running!) but what with the way society was for women at the time and the way Mary wanted things to be.

Jun 01, 2011 Renae rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Rachelle DeMunck
I love books that give personality and voice to long-dead figures. This was no exception. Although dark and full of Mary's personal sorrows, I found myself riveted. Bennett takes some creative license with timeline, which she clarifies in an end note, but this does not bother me in the slightest. Mary is melancholy, vindictive, romantic, angry, literate, and afire with something from her long-dead mother. And I loved her. Perfect cover art, wonderful pacing, and achingly lovely writing at times.
This is the story of Mary Shelley (author of 'Frankenstein') and her romance & life with poet Percy Shelley. Talks of her losses & joys and how events led to her famous book.

This was a really good book. Neither thoroughly enjoyed nor disliked...just good. Up until I read this, I had no idea Frankenstein was written by a woman. I was filled with emotion on all Mary's despairing times in her life. Although the author lets us know at the end of this story that it is 'based' off real events
Jan 27, 2012 Kayla rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-read
I went into this book thinking it would be another cheesy fictional biography. However, I was pleasantly surprised. Knowing a considerable bit about the romantic poets, I was rather impressed at how close Veronica Bennett kept to the real life of Mary Shelley. Granted, there was some fictional license that she took, but for the most part, the tragic tale of young Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin Shelley remains intact. This actually was one of the better adaptations of a real life I've read. I rather ...more
Aug 23, 2007 Joshua rated it really liked it
I guess I never realized how macabre the Shelleys' life together really was. Holy dead babies, Batman!
Pretty awesome book, but I think it'd be the rare teenage boy who could get through those first few chapters with much enthusiasm.
Applause for the nice author's note, though. I always like it when a historical fic author gives you some background or some idea where they might've taken liberties, and where they stuck to the facts. It would've been even more awesome if Bennett had given us some so
Sep 26, 2011 Morgan rated it it was ok
What I expected from this book and what I received where very different.

This book is set in the early 1800's. Life is not well described from this book, and I often felt at wit's end, or as though I'd been left behind in this book. It moved very fast and skippy, and you will often need to reread in order to obtain the actual information that was given. This book doesn't give a very good visual. Though I enjoyed the social status experience in the book, that's about the only feel I got from it.
Aug 18, 2008 Julie rated it it was amazing
Why this book is marketed as YA, I have no idea. It will work for YA or for adult readers. An interesting fictional take on what led Mary Shelley to her lifestyle, and to her conception of Frankenstein. Not the most favorable pictures of Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and others, but all the characters are flawed and interesting. The book was very well written, and kept me interested the entire time. Highly recommended.
Jul 13, 2012 da-wildchildz rated it it was ok
or The Modern Prometheus,

I read. Then I dipped the pen in my ink and added,

By Mary Shelley.

Last line from Angelmonster. A monstrously bad novelisation about the life of Mary Shelley. Badly written, it was as though Bennett aimed to imitate Austen but without the wit, it makes dry reading. Shame, because Shelley led an interesting life.
Sep 19, 2013 Nicole rated it it was ok
It's not that it's horribly written. It's just not written well. Historical novels are tricky sure but I just hate the characters so much. They're way too dumb and annoying. It felt like reading a soap opera. I learned a lot which I suppose is the point. But it took me forever to read this thing which at my reading pace, should have only been four hours not four months.
Sep 17, 2011 Jessie rated it liked it
Shelves: england
This was given to me as a birthday present, I wouldn't have heard of it otherwise. Reading it did make me more interested in the life of Mary Shelley. I don't think it deserves all the negative reviews I am seeing below but I myself wouldn't praise the book. It was still an interesting novel though.
Jun 14, 2013 Lisa rated it really liked it
I've always been fascinated by the Romantic poets, so this grabbed me even though it was in a cheap bin at a dollar store. It's too bad it's been relegated to that bin because I really enjoyed it. There were some liberties taken with the story, but it's fiction. I loved the author's imagined daily lives of the tragic centers of the story.
Amanda Ryan
Aug 15, 2007 Amanda Ryan rated it did not like it
I was disappointed by this novel. I had received an advanced reader's copy from a friend, and the premise intrigued me. However, the author didn't really hold my attention, or at least the subject wasn't as rich as I thought it could have been. The story line itself is wonderful, but I expected more. It was a quick, easy read that didn't really leave any impression on me whatsoever.
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Veronica Bennett is a children's novelist. Until recently, she worked part-time as an English Lecturer; she now writes fiction full-time. She graduated from University College, Cardiff in 1975 with an Honours degree in English. She began her writing career as a freelance journalist, but soon moved into fiction. Her first book, Monkey, was published in 1998 and was acclaimed by The Times Educationa ...more
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