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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Classics Week, Guest: Mina Khan Talks About Mary Shelley

Happy Wednesday All,

I hope you enjoyed Marie Hall's post yesterday on Regency Romance and how they influenced her. I know I did.

Today I welcome author Mina Khan to Write By Bethany. When I
Author Mina Khan
was scheduling authors for this week, I got on the two email loops I'm a member of and asked who would be interested (out of Fantasy and Paranormal authors).  Mina sent me an email asking if I had room for her and whether or not Mary Shelley was taken. I replied that there was room, and no, nobody had claimed Mary Shelley as their topic. So what follows is an interesting take on a novel that is definitely categorized as a Classic. My thanks to Mina for being a part of Classics Week! 



So, now I invite you to sit back and relax as Mina takes the floor...

Thanks Bethany for having me over! My geeky heart is thrilled to be sharing & discussing one of my favorite classic reads – Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus by British author Mary Shelley.

Frankenstein is considered to be one of the earliest examples of science fiction, if not the first real science fiction story. Science and its possibilities and consequences are an intrinsic part of the plot. But Frankenstein is also timeless because it is about the human condition.
  
As a reader and writer of paranormal romance and urban fantasy, what appeals to me the most is Shelley’s handling of Frankenstein’s creature.
  

When people hear “Frankenstein,” they usually imagine an eight-foot tall green creature with bolts coming out of his neck, who communicates in grunts, growls and moans. But Shelley’s creature was very different.



For me, Shelley was the first person to humanize the monster. If you watch old vampire or werewolf movies (Nosferatu, anyone?), they were pure horror. The Monsters were stereotypes with no depth beyond mindless marauding beasts.

Shelley’s novel made me wonder who was the real monster? The creature who is abandoned and rejected and needs community or the man who created him and doesn’t take the time or care to love and be responsible for the consequences – his child.
  
Frankenstein is about the basic human need for love and belonging, it’s about acceptance and rejection, and it’s about Science vs Nature, Patriarchal Society vs one where women are a valued and important part of life, and it’s about the complex relationship between parent and child.

Frankenstein and its themes have influenced one of my own stories, Wildfire. The Japanese American heroine, Lynn, inherited the dragon shifter gene. She doesn’t want anything to do with her inner dragon or its primal instincts, power and refusal to be completely tamed and controlled.
  
Worse, the gene sometimes skips generations and this makes for a prickly relationship with her non-shifter, practical and efficient mother (who is a doctor and devoted to science and medicine).
  
Lynn is hunting a rogue dragon – the one thing she fears the most especially because he threatens her control.
  
To me, the story arc of Wildfire is the Serenity Prayer. It's about Lynn accepting herself, accepting what she can and cannot do, with grace and wisdom.
  
BLURB: Dragon Shifter Lynn Alexander is hunting an arsonist
burning up acres of West Texas. She has to figure out if her primary suspect a malicious rogue dragon or the love of her life? A paranormal mystery with romantic elements. 

Note From Bethany:  Wildfire is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble for your reading pleasure.

11 comments:

Teresa Reasor said...

Excellent Post, Mina!!! I too am a Shelley fan and have read Frankenstein countless times. You're take on the story was right on.
And I've read Wildfire and loved it. And I've read your Djinn stories as well. I'm waiting eagerly for the next book!!
Teresa Reasor

Bethany said...

Teresa Reasor,

Thank you for dropping by and supporting Mina! :-)

Rashda Khan said...

Lol, Teresa, I knew we were sister writers...thank you for the kind words & the visit!

And Thanks Bethany for hosting! :)

Marsha said...

Great post, Mina. I think you really nailed the depth of this story. As I read the words, I thought about the monster in parents who abuse their children. That's what the doctor did with his creation. Made me think, girl. And I'm off to get your book. Good blurb. So fun to see you last weekend at the NTRWA conference. Hope you and the family had a good time the rest of your visit in Fort Worth.

Bethany said...

Marsha,

Thank you for dropping by and supporting Mina!

Bethany said...

Mina,

Thank YOU for being a part of Classics Week!

Rashda Khan said...

Aww, thanks Marsha. Yes, Frankenstein resonated with me and I'm so glad I was able to share that. I hope you enjoy Wildfire! :)

P.S. We had a blast in Fort Worth...I'd so move there if I could!

Rosanna Leo said...

Wonderful inspiration for another wonderful writer. Thanks for the great post!

Angela Adams said...

I've never read the book -- just various versions of the movie. This post now has me adding another book to my TBR list.

Bethany said...

Rosanna,

Thank you for supporting Mina!

Bethany said...

Angela,

Thank you for dropping by and supporting Mina!