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Frankenstein Unbound

3.28 of 5 stars 3.28  ·  rating details  ·  378 ratings  ·  28 reviews
Brian Aldiss, with the kind of science-fiction fantasy of which he is one of the finest exponents alive today. - Sunday Telegraph

Joe Bodenland, a 21st century American, passes through a timeslip and finds himself with Byron and Shelley in the famous villa on the shore of Lake Geneva. More fantastically, he finds himself face to face with a real Frankenstein, a doppelganger
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Paperback, 157 pages
Published January 1st 1975 by Pan Books Limited (first published January 1st 1973)
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Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Brian Aldiss has a mother complex.

There's no other way to explain his novel FRANKENSTEIN UNBOUND. In it, Joe Bodenland, a man from the 21st century slips back in time to the 19th century; specifically, to Switzerland, where he first meets Victor Frankenstein and his monster and then, after another displacement, Mary Shelley and her illustrious companions. He becomes obsessed with thwarting first Frankenstein, and then his monsters.

There's some good stuff along the way. Aldiss' portraits of Percy
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Brenna
In the year 2020 (so begins Frankenstein Unbound), a great war has created cataclysmic conditions on Earth. Nuclear warfare between warring nations has created - not an uninhabitable world, but - a condition wherein so-called "timeslips" occur. That is, the inhabitants of 2020 find themselves thrust into times and places throughout history and beyond, before the timescale corrects itself and reverts them to their proper time and locale.

This chronological dyspepsia is the direct result of the nuc
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☠ Daniel
El Hombre se ve excedido por sus invenciones, por sus actos y creaciones que se vuelcan en contra de él, pues intenta controlar lo que no comprende, trata de domar a la bestia de lo desconocido y es herido en su intento de "perfeccionar" la naturaleza y la vida del hombre y al propio Hombre.

Una persona descubre un elemento que puede proporcionar energía por largo tiempo beneficiando a sus congéneres, otra persona piensa en usar dicho elemento para crear una bomba atómica. Una persona descubre l
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Oscar
Aldiss no sólo tiene buenas ideas, también escribe bien. Y lo demuestra en este homenaje a Mary Shelley y a su inmortal obra.

'Frankenstein desencadenado' comienza mostrándonos a Joe Bodenland en Texas, en el año 2020. El mundo está en guerra, lo que ha provocado la ruptura del espacio-tiempo, causando el deslizamiento de zonas de este mundo hacia el pasado. En uno de estos deslizamientos, Bodenland llega al siglo XIX, a 1816. En esta realidad, se da la circunstancia de que coinciden tanto él, co
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Althea Ann
This is the book that the Roger Corman movie was (loosely) based on.
I actually thought the film, although definitely a 'B-movie' did a better job in some respects of delineating the parallels between the sci-fi scenario that Aldiss sets up and the classic story of Frankenstein.
In the 21st century, nuclear war in space has ruptured the space-time continuum, causing bizarre 'time-slips.' Caught in one of these, an influential man finds himself 200 years in the past - but a past where it seems that
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Jim
This is a rather silly tale...it reminds me of Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris " where the protagonist travels back in time to visit his heroes who were living in Paris in the twenties. Here the protagonist is transported back in time from 2020 to 1816, and the banks of Lake Geneva where he might conveniently meet Mary Shelley and her creation Frankenstein and his monster.

The protagonist,Joe Bodenland, manages this time travel feat through a time slip which results rather improbably from the n
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Dave Morris
I've had this book for decades and I was going to toss it, but then I had to go on a business trip to the Arctic Circle and it seemed the perfect book to take along. It's a quick read, fun, well-written and would score more highly (much as I abhor giving books star ratings at all) if it added anything substantial to the Frankenstein story. As it is, a solid entertainment.
Simon
Maybe I'll appreciate this more once I've read Mary Shelly's Frankenstein (on my to read pile).

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Ok, now I've read "Frankenstein", I probably need to re-read this because I don't remember it that well. Not sure I'll ever get around to it though.
Andrew
a fairly swift read this as its not the longest tale a novella on format I guess...Anyhow this is a time travelling tale which presents Victor Frankenstein and his experiments factual and running concurrently with events in the lives of the shelley's and Lord Byron.
It's not a reworking of Frankenstein as such but it does use elements of that tale to fairly good effect...in fact the tone and character of the book seems about right albeit this involves more modern elements to it being a time trave
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Catherine Siemann
I teach Frankenstein in college classes quite often, and I love books in various genres that reenvision the Romantic poets, so I figured this would be right up my alley. But the whole thing seems to exist to show that its protagonist, 21st century man Joe Bodenland, is the only sane one of the lot (except Mary!), fictional or historical, as both Victor Frankenstein and his creature are portrayed as essentially evil and insane. Byron and Shelley, likewise, are shadows of their real selves, leavin ...more
Moira Russell
A great idea, really poorly executed.
Vitor Frazão
Tal como é comum nas obras Aldiss: ideias brilhantes, com execução mediana.

Conflitos humanos transferidos para a superfície lunar; diluição das linhas entre realidade e ficção; ruptura do tecido espaço-temporal, resultando em Deslocamentos Temporais aleatórios, e o conceito dos objectos mais banais, desde relógios a carros, serem movidos a urânio (esta última uma ideia particularmente aterrador), são elementos com forte potencial, infelizmente o resto da história deixa um pouco a desejar, em es
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Krystl Louwagie
First, some quotes I liked from this book:

"When childhood dies, its corpses are called adults."

"Flesh without spirit was obscene. Why else should the notion of Frankenstein's monster have affronted the imagination of generations, if it was not their intuition of God that was affronted?"

I think there would have been more, and I wish I would've thought to highlight them as I as going, but, like most often, I didn't.

Anyways, this was a fairly short science fiction novel that takes place in 2020, w
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Christian
I'm not sure how I feel about this book. I'm a fan of the Romantic writers, so the slips into florid prose and speeches didn't bother me, and I loved the sense of the Sublime that Aldiss creates - the harsh Arctic wilderness, the end of man. The episode where the narrator sleeps with Mary Shelley read like fanfic, though.
Bo
Jun 28, 2013 Bo rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Aldiss completionists
As a fan of Brian Aldiss I've always thought his biggest weakness was his characters and in this novel its narrated in first person. That soured the whole experience a bit for me.
The story is the alt history kind where famous historical people (aswell as fictional in this particular case) are characters and I also tend to find that trope quite annoying.

On the more positive side the concept of the Time-Quakes that allow the main character to travel back to the early 1800s interested me but it wa
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Doremili
No me gusto. Comenzo muy prometedor, con ciencia ficcion y traslados temporales. Pero si lo Frankensteniano hubiese quedado en metafora y centrado en otro tipo de historia lo habria apreciado mejor. *Spoiler* Fue una sorpresa que realmente se encontrara con Victor Frankenstein, incluso prometia, pero cuando llego con Mary Shelley... ¿Que se fumo el autor? ¿Esta tan obsesionado con Mary que sus sueños humedos eran con ella? Esto es casi un Fanfic de Frankenstein que mientras avanzaba se hacia mas ...more
Keith Davis
The author believes Mary Shelly is the mother of the science fiction genre, and in this odd novel Mary Shelly and her family and friends (including the poets Byron and Shelly) live in the same world as Dr. Frankenstein and his monster. A time traveler falls in love with Mary and it just gets weirder from there.
Nandor
Entiendo y se que es una novela de ciencia ficción especulativa pero par ser honesto hay demasiada inconsistencia lógica en gran parte del argumento, demasiado. lo leí porque es de Aldiss y después de leer sus helyconia tenia otras expectativas
Checkman
A strange and weird novel. It jumps all over the place and can't make up it's mind exactly what it is. That's really all I can say. Might help to be under the influence of some type of controlled substance when reading it. Good luck!
Andrew
The time slip idea totally tripped me out as I wish Aldiss explored the concept and frugality of it more. But character and history was done very well as the past and future both melded together smoothly.
Nicolas
Je ne garde qu'un vague souvenir de cette trop vieille lecture qui m'avait vraiment parue rébarbative, effet curieusement reproductible à chaque tentative de lecture.
Homer
The best alternate telling fo the Frankenstein story. It is a wonderful book of the destructiveness of Science unchecked. And amazingly, the movie is better. Great Read
Jan-Maat
Time travel homage to the novel Frankenstein in which the Narrator is transported into the text of the novel.

Readable.
Dave
It's the original Frankenstein, told from another perspective (a time traveler from the future witnesses the events)
Dan Sutton
This is Aldiss at his best. Beautiful, lyrical writing and a great twist on the Frankenstein story.
William Cameron
Nice little novel, read it after I saw the Movie - ofcourse the book is WAY better. :-)
419tjhamilton
I very much enjoyed this time travel oddity!
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Pseudonyms: Jael Cracken, Peter Pica, John Runciman, C.C. Shackleton, Arch Mendicant, & "Doc" Peristyle.

Brian Wilson Aldiss is one of the most important voices in science fiction writing today. He wrote his first novel while working as a bookseller in Oxford. Shortly afterwards he wrote his first work of science fiction and soon gained international recognition. Adored for his innovative liter
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