Tag: alchemy

This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel

Posted October 20, 2012 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Young Adult / 0 Comments

This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth OppelTitle: This Dark Endeavour (Goodreads)
Author: Kenneth Oppel
Series: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein #1
Published: Simon & Schuster, 2011
Pages: 304
Genres: Young Adult
My Copy: Audiobook

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

Most people know my obsession with Frankenstein so I wanted to give This Dark Endeavour a go; since the author Kenneth Oppel calls this a prequel. Victor’s brother, Konrad, has fallen ill and no doctor has been able to cure him. Victor’s determination to save his brother has turned to alchemy to find the forbidden Elixir of Life and save his twin brother. With the help of his beautiful cousin Elizabeth and best friend Henry, Victor pushes the boundaries of nature and science in a treacherous search for the ingredients to help Konrad.

This is book one in The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein series which I believe is being made into a trilogy. My first thoughts were that a YA novel about Victor Frankenstein was  never going to work, but then after a bit of a look at the book I decided to give it a go anyway. I thought maybe if his research of Frankenstein is in-depth enough and he keeps to the dark and gothic elements of the original classic it might work. I really should have stuck to my first thoughts because from the very start I hated this book.

First of all this book follows the same old paranormal young adult formula which means not so much dark and gothic elements but lots and lots to do with a love triangle. I really hate love triangles in books and this novel felt like the entire plot was centred around the love triangle. Sure, they search for the Elixir of Life but there was more to do with Victor’s feelings toward Elizabeth than the actual alchemy.

Personally I wish I never read this book, it really did nothing for the Frankenstein story and love triangles are always annoying. There is a small steampunk element in this book but that felt like the author was jumping on the bandwagon to help market this book to the readers that want Steampunk, Paranormal, Love Triangle filled Young Adult romance. If you want gothic and dark YA like I do, then this book is not for you. But if you like the idea of a romance with paranormal elements in it, then maybe give this book a go.