Frankenstein Readalong: Last Post, Better Late Than Never

I'm a bit late writing my last Frankenstein Readalong post, but here it is. I finished!

Victor has been working on Monster #2 for almost a year when he finally realizes that the lady might have a mind of her own and not want to be slave to Monster #1. Also, what if they have babies? (Doesn't Victor have the power to prevent this??) The creature pokes his head in to see how things are going. Victor flips out and destroys Monster #2 before she can have agency and peace out of this place. The creature gives this warning: "I will be with you on your wedding night." Victor, a supposed genius, after tearing apart the creature's future wife right in front of him, comes to the conclusion that the creature will murder HIM on his wedding night.

We need you, Captain Obvious
Having nothing else to do, Victor rows to the mainland. The sea is rough and he thinks he might die. We aren't that lucky. He makes it to shore only to learn that Clerval has been murdered and for some reason he is the main suspect. He does what he always does under stress and gets the brain fever.  However, being a rich white dude sometimes has it's advantages. The magistrate not only sends for Victor's dad but gathers witnesses that place him on the island at the time of the murder. So once again other people solve Victor's problems.

Now Victor can't wait to get married. He believes once that happens, he and the creature will have a battle to the death. He acts all weird and freaked out and not at all like a normal groom. Elizabeth is worried and finally asks him what is going on. And, oh my god, this is what he tells her. "I will confide this tale of misery and terror to you THE DAY AFTER OUR MARRIAGE SHOULD TAKE PLACE." What a chicken shit. Tell her now so she can decide whether or not to marry your sorry ass.

No words
No one tries to put an end to this wedding Jane Eyre style so they get married and it seems like the most miserable wedding day ever. They go off on their honeymoon, but that night Victor makes Elizabeth go to the bedroom alone. Guess what happens? You'll never guess. It was so surprising. Yeah. Elizabeth is murdered by the creature.

Victor shares the bad news with his dad and Ernest. His dad has a stroke and dies. I guess no one cares about Ernest, because he's never mentioned again. Finally, Victor tells his tale to the local magistrate, who actually believes him, but he's like "shrug, what can you do?"

That's when Victor chases the creature northward, the creature sometimes writing long paragraphs of encouragement on the bark of trees (????). He finally leads Victor to the arctic and to the present time in the story.

How does this story end? Victor is dying and confides to Walton that he shouldn't have made the monster but since he did it was his responsibility to destroy him. No duh. He also sort of hints that Walton should do it. Victor dies and the creature sneaks onto the boat to cry over him. Walton confronts him. The creature says he feels really bad about killing all those people, but it had to be done because everyone was so mean to him.

Use your words, Creature

I know I sound harsh here, but I do feel bad for the creature to some extent. He shouldn't have been created. That wasn't his doing. Victor was a terrible, gutless creator who abandoned him. He definitely shouldn't have done that either. But the creature wasn't a mindless killing machine. He knew what he was doing was wrong, but still he did it. Between the two of them there was a battle of who is in more pain. As a result, a lot of innocent people died. There is no hero here. They are both the worst.

In the end, the creature tells Walton he will throw himself into a fire to end his own misery. Walton is forced to return to England having never reached the North Pole.

I did enjoy rereading Frankenstein. It's strange reading it at this point in time, where there are people who identify with the creature too much. I first read it in the early 1990s and the world was different, I was different. It's always so interesting to read a book at different times in your life. I highly recommend doing that. There were issues with the writing I never noticed then but I still think Mary Shelley is amazing. She gave us a monster for the ages.

Thanks, Mary
And thanks Jenny for hosting this Frankenstein Readalong! I'm glad I did it.