Have you finished reading “Frankenstein” and “Northanger Abbey” for JASP this summer? If so (or if you’re procrastinating — no judgment!), these recently released or upcoming books and series put a unique spin of Jane Austen and Mary Shelley.
“Pride and Prometheus,” John Kessel
This book, recently released in hardcover, is set after several years after the events of “Pride & Prejudice” and in the middle of the story of “Frankenstein.” In London with Kitty Bennet for the season, 32-year-old Mary Bennet is used to being unnoticed. Then she meets enigmatic Monsieurs Frankenstein and Clerval at a ball, where she and Frankenstein discover a shared love for the natural sciences. What smitten Mary doesn’t know is that the Creature has followed Frankenstein to England.
“Frankenstein in Baghdad,” Ahmed Saadawi
This book, recently translated into English, has won France’s Grand Prize for Fantasy and an international prize for Arabic fiction. Set in contemporary Baghdad, the tale follows Hadi, a scavenger who discovers to his horror that his project — piecing together a corpse — has disappeared.
“The Frankenstein Chronicles” on Netflix
The 2015 British historical drama has made its way across the pond. Set in 19th-century London, the series centers on inspector John Marlott (Sean Bean, “Game of Thrones”), who’s on the case after a string of murders hints at a scientist bent on reanimating the dead. The twist here? Mary Shelley herself gets embroiled in the mystery. The actress who plays her, Anna Maxwell Martin, might look familiar: She plays Elizabeth Darcy in the 2014 adaptation of “Death Comes to Pemberley.”
“Camp Austen: My Life as an Accidental Jane Austen Superfan,” Ted Scheinman
This book details Scheinman’s time with the Jane Austen Summer Program. Want to know more? Watch this space in the next few weeks!
“Fictional Fares” web series
This may or may not have anything to do with Austen and Shelley, but if you enjoyed “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries” or “Emma Approved,” keep an eye out for this new web series. Modeled after the series “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” the show will feature characters — from history, literature, fairy tales, etc. — while they grab a ride with an Uber-like car service. Announced cast members include Ashley Clements (who played Lizzie in LBD) and Brent Bailey (who played Knightley in “Emma Approved”). Who knows which characters will show up …
New to you
Jane Austen + Text Posts on Tumblr
This Tumblr blog has been around for a while, but if you’re not familiar with Tumblr, it’s worth checking out. In addition to funny Austen-related memes, the blogger’s responses to questions from readers about Austen’s works, themes and more are thoughtful — and thought-provoking.