Read Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein Online

Authors: Stephanie Hemphill

Tags: #Juvenile Fiction, #Biographical, #European, #Family, #General, #Love & Romance

Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein

BOOK: Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein
11.69Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

Advance Reader’s e-proof

courtesy of
HarperCollins Publishers

This is an advance reader’s e-proof made from digital files of the uncorrected proofs. Readers are reminded that changes may be made prior to publication, including to the type, design, layout, or content, that are not reflected in this e-proof, and that this e-pub may not reflect the final edition. Any material to be quoted or excerpted in a review should be checked against the final published edition. Dates, prices, and manufacturing details are subject to change or cancellation without notice.

HIDEOUS LOVE

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

—THE STORY OF THE GIRL WHO WROTE
FRANKENSTEIN

HIDEOUS
LOVE

STEPHANIE HEMPHILL

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

Copyright

This book is a work of fiction. References to real people, events, establishments, organizations, or locales are intended only to provide a sense of authenticity, and are used to advance the fictional narrative. All other characters, and all incidents and dialogue, are drawn from the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real.

Balzer + Bray is an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote
Frankenstein

Copyright © 2013 by Stephanie Hemphill

All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. By payment of the required fees, you have been granted the nonexclusive, nontransferable right to access and read the text of this e-book on-screen. No part of this text may be reproduced, transmitted, downloaded, decompiled, reverse-engineered, or stored in or introduced into any information storage and retrieval system, in any form or by any means, whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of HarperCollins e-books.

HarperCollins books may be purchased for educational, business, or sales promotional use. For information address Avon Books, an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

www.epicreads.com

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data is available.

ISBN 978-0-06-185331-9

13 14 15 16 17  XX/XXXX  10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

First Edition

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

Dedication

For Jessica

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

I AM MARY

I want to be beauty,
but I am not.
I want to be free,
but I am not.
I want to be equal,
but I am not.
I want to be favorite,
but I am not.
I want to be loved,
and yet I am not.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

MY MOTHER

I never knew my mother.
She did not nurse me from her breast.
She could not soothe my aches and tears.
I learned to walk without her aid.
I never knew my mother.
She did not hold me in the dark.
She could not sing away my fears.
I learned to speak without her voice.
I never knew my mother.
She helped establish women’s rights.
I wear her legacy like a pledge.
I learned to think and fight reading her words.
I never knew my mother
for she died when I was eleven days old.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

LONGING TO BE DADDY’S LITTLE GIRL

My father, William Godwin,
is a political philosopher
highly respected by his peers.
He is progressive,
teaching his daughters
as if they are sons.
When I stand in his presence
I feel as though I must
leap upon a chair
just to meet his shoulders.
My father, William Godwin,
is a tower of light.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

MY STEPMOTHER

She was spawned from creature,
not man, and sends shivers
up one’s arms.
Under her hair must be horns.
She is Medusa
trying to turn me to stone
in the eyes of my father.
At times I swear
she was born to torture me
and for no other purpose.
She needles me
with her incessant blather.
She prods me to misbehave
when she stupidly
misuses language
and forgets facts.
She picks on me
for my impatience with others
as she herself is a dimwit.
She criticizes me for not being
as pretty as her daughter, Jane,
despises me for not being Jane.
She reflects no history,
nothing of which to be proud.
All she bears is the marital hand
of my father which baffles me
more than snow in July.
She shuffles me away
to Dundee, Scotland,
when I am fourteen
and for that I
am
grateful.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

OUR UNUSUAL HOUSEHOLD

1814

Fanny is the eldest,
my half-sister, daughter of my mother
and Gilbert Imlay, an American entrepreneur.
She never seeks trouble
and is quiet and reserved.
Her stated last name
is the same as my father’s, Godwin.
Charles Clairmont, the next eldest,
is the son
of my awful stepmother,
Mary Jane Clairmont
and Charles de Gaulis,
who died when Charles was one.
Charles is fair haired,
and fortunate to be a boy.
I am the third eldest
and best bred.
Learning comes easily to me,
as does frustration.
Clara Jane Clairmont (Jane)
is nearly my age,
the daughter of my stepmother
and some unnamed suitor
my stepmother calls Charles Clairmont,
yet not the same man
as was Charles’s father.
We sometimes get on
and at other times I wish
to pull Jane by the roots of her hair.
And then there is William,
the youngest,
the offspring of
my stepmother and my father,
doted on by my stepmother
until it pains the eyes.
None of us has the same parents.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

MY RETURN FROM DUNDEE, SCOTLAND

Spring 1814

At first I was afraid
to leave my home,
to leave my father’s care
knowing that my banishment
to the Baxters
meant to punish me.
My arm of pustules and pain
represented all the ways
I could not be well and good
in my own house.
But I found a family in Scotland.
A family like I had read about in books
where the mother and father
care for one another
and all the children
are their own.
I found girlfriends in Scotland,
the two daughters of the Baxters,
Isabella and Christina.
We became as inseparable
as words and letters.
My arm healed
and my temper soothed.
My imagination awoke
like a sleeping giant
in that stark landscape,
and I began to write stories.
I return to my house
of chaos, calmer
and more assured.
There is so much
of the greater world
I know now
will be a part of me,
and I am not afraid.

UNCORRECTED E-PROOF—NOT FOR SALE

HarperCollins Publishers

.....................................................................

MR. SHELLEY

May 5, 1814

He is the buzz
of our Spinner Street home
when at sixteen
I return permanently from Dundee.
No other topic passes between anyone’s lips.
Jane declares that when Mr. Shelley
falls silent
the air ceases circulation,
that when a smile flushes his countenance
the room boils with laughter.
And even quiet Fanny agrees.
But I remembered Mr. Shelley
from my visit home
the year before
as more buzzard than noteworthy,
fairylike
with the curly blond hair
of a schoolgirl,
his hands frail as silk stockings.
I remember he stood beside
his wife and I wondered
who wore the dress?
In a voice pert as a baby starling,
BOOK: Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein
11.69Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

The Gangland War by John Silvester
The Spanish Holocaust by Paul Preston
The Cruiser by David Poyer
Trouble in Warp Space by Franklin W. Dixon
Model Suspect 3 by Carolyn Keene
Deporting Dominic by Lindemann, Renee
The Slippery Map by N. E. Bode
The Trap by Andrew Fukuda