Frankissstein: A Love Story by Jeanette Winterson

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“Humankind cannot bear very much reality. That is why we invent stories, I said. And what if we are the story we invent? He said.”

Jeanette Winterson

Synopsis: In Brexit Britain, a young transgender doctor called Ry is falling in love – against their better judgement – with Victor Stein, a celebrated professor leading the public debate around AI. Meanwhile, Ron Lord, just divorced and living with Mum again, is set to make his fortune launching a new generation of sex dolls for lonely men everywhere. Across the Atlantic, in Phoenix, Arizona, a cryogenics facility houses dozens of bodies of men and women who are medically and legally dead… but waiting to return to life.But the scene is set in 1816, when nineteen-year-old Mary Shelley writes a story about creating a non-biological life-form. ‘Beware, for I am fearless and therefore powerful.’ What will happen when homo sapiens is no longer the smartest being on the planet? Jeanette Winterson shows us how much closer we are to that future than we realise. Funny and furious, bold and clear-sighted, Frankissstein is a love story about life itself. 


The story started of as a mystery to me. Switching from 1816 to modern times, I started the book being confused, having no idea what was going on. I did understand that the story had something to do with Frankenstein, hence the title, but that was about it. Then the story suddenly starts talking about sex dolls. These parts of the book were actually most amusing to me, but also felt so random to me.

I found the switch between the timelines confusing, and it was only later in the book that I finally understood more about the connection between the two timelines and what the book was about. The confusion made it more difficult for me to commit fully to the story.

Ry and Victor fall in love, accepting each other for who they are. Ry is trans, and along with the creating of new life and putting someone’s brain/soul into a different body felt like a connection to both stories. Every character seems to be linked to the story of Frankenstein in a way. Figuring that out was eye-opening and made the story so much clearer to me.

I gave this book 3/5 stars.

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