Review by Choice Review
Unlike many titles in the "Cambridge Companions to Literature" series, this one is structured not thematically but around Shelley's works. The essays in the first section all discuss Frankenstein, including its critical tradition, the films, and the myth. Schor (Princeton Univ.) devotes each chapter in the second section to one of Shelley's other major works or genres, and the final section considers her as editor, letter writer, biographer, travel writer, and cultural critic. The subject of five out of sixteen essays, Frankenstein still has pride of place, but as with Mary Shelley in Her Times, ed. by Betty Bennett and Stuart Curran (CH, May'01), it is no longer the sole concern. Thanks in part to definitive multivolume editions of Shelley's works (The Novels and Selected Works of Mary Shelley, gen. ed., Nora Crook, CH, Jan'97, and Mary Shelley's Literary Lives and Other Writings, also ed. by Crook, CH, May'03), Shelley is beginning to get serious attention, but works other than Frankenstein are still comparatively unfamiliar. Accordingly, many of the pieces in the present volume seem like editors' introductions: they summarize and defend little-known works. Although the essays are well informed, few break new ground, making the collection particularly suited to beginners. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates and above. J. T. Lynch Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Newark
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