Sometimes I make a survey of all of the books I haven’t read and all of the movies I haven’t seen and feel like a slight cultural failure. Following this idea all forms of Frankenstein have eluded me beyond singing “Puttin on the Ritz” once in high school- which I’m told was in “Young Frankenstein.” However, even with my entire lack of firsthand experience with the text I have a wealth of experience with the characters and plot itself. Frankenstein is so pervasive a story and set of characters that the plot is considered a “trope” and has had multiple tropes sparked in relation to it.
That being said even though I was pretty sure I had a fair understanding of the general plot I was completely unfamiliar with the framing the letters from Captain Walton provided. This actually refreshed the concept for me and made it more realistic, for some reason a man on the run or on the hunt suffering real physical effects made the story “alive” to me. Walton’s presence makes the entire first chapter’s backstory seem necessary rather than having the reader spend it thinking “get to the part about the monster!” Which I must admit if I approach a book with as many preconceived notions as I did this one, I am liable to do.