Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein” as Want to Read:
The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  1,516 Ratings  ·  580 Reviews
Elizabeth Lavenza hasn't had a proper meal in weeks. Her thin arms are covered with bruises from her "caregiver," and she is on the verge of being thrown into the streets . . . until she is brought to the home of Victor Frankenstein, an unsmiling, solitary boy who has everything--except a friend.

Victor is her escape from misery. Elizabeth does everything she can to make he
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published September 25th 2018 by Delacorte Press
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Camille It is definitely more historical then the original but it does have a bit of the original sci-fi aspect. Don't go into it expecting that much sci-fi…moreIt is definitely more historical then the original but it does have a bit of the original sci-fi aspect. Don't go into it expecting that much sci-fi though(less)
Wendy It's coming out from Delacorte Press, a YA and MG imprint at Random House, but it easily can cross over to adult. I *may* be biased, but it's . . .…moreIt's coming out from Delacorte Press, a YA and MG imprint at Random House, but it easily can cross over to adult. I *may* be biased, but it's . . . monstrously good.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Emily May
Mar 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sometimes we were strangers even to ourselves.

For the first two thirds, I thought this book was pretty good. Frankenstein is one of my favourite books, and I like it when authors give a voice - and different perspective - to a side character. But it is in the final third when this book goes from pretty good to excellent.

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein is, essentially, a retelling of Frankenstein from the perspective of Elizabeth - an orphan taken in by the Frankenstein family and la
Victoria Schwab
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Well that was dark and delicious.
Em (RunawayWithDreamthieves)
you know what’s really fun and in style right now? retellings of old famous tales but focusing the spotlight on the lives of the women in them and carving more spaces for their stories.

I’m so excited to read this book!!
Elise (TheBookishActress)
You are mine, Elizabeth Lavenza, and nothing will take you from me. Not even death.

I do not think I expected one of the best books I read this year to be a retelling of Frankenstein where it’s not just about the nature of monstrousness, but about the power of women working together and escaping an abusive relationship, with intoxicating writing and a morally grey lady as the protagonist. And yet… here we are.

I don’t think you can talk about this book without talking about the characters, be

ARC provided by Random House in exchange for an honest review.

“Some nights, when even my child’s heart knew that what I had been asked to endure was too much, I would stand on the edge of the lake, lift my face to the stars, and scream. Nothing ever called back. Even among the creeping things of the lake’s night, I was alone. Until Victor.”

Kiersten White wrote this book to honor the fact that 2018 is the 200th anniversary of Frankenstein by Mary Shelley! It has been ten years since I picked
Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
“Elizabeth,” he said, his tone firm and chiding. He lifted my chin and fixed my eyes with his. “You are mine. You have been since the first day we met. You will be mine forever. My absence should not have caused you to doubt the firmness and steadfastness of my attachment to you. It will never fade.”
This turned out to be a pretty twisted love story.

I read Frankenstein in more details than anyone should ever read a book when I was in 10th grade. I was in Academic Decathlon, and that year, for
Kayla Dawn
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: owned-books
I'm so goddamn disappointed.

I really enjoyed the first 150 pages or so (even though most people who disliked this seem to think it was the boring part of the book lol) but it just went downhill after this.

Everything happened so fast and was unnecessarily rushed. Why not write a longer book? It only had around 280 pages anyway.
It read as if White just wanted to finish as quickly as possible.
Because of that the story got more and more unbelievable and felt artificially constructed, forced even.
Aug 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
"I thought to puncture heaven and instead I discovered hell."

Everything about this book screams READ ME. And yes, it does so in caps lock.

It is so promisingly creepy and twisted, exactly what a perfect book sounds like to me. I am a big fan of Penny Dreadful (it's on Netflix and you need to watch it right now) and this book had some major PD vibes. It started out strong but the thrill of it all lost itself toward the ending. I immediately fell in love with Elizabeth, the main character. She was
Sep 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads, e-books
This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription

“For everyone made to feel like a side character in their own story”

🌟 I like the dedication of this book very much as I always think of people as main or secondary characters. I myself am a secondary character!

🌟 Some of you know that I didn’t finish the And I Darken book. But you also know that I believe in second chances. I wanted to give Kiersten her second chance, and while this was not a favorite book, not even c
may ❀
this book was a Ride

so creepy, so entertaining, so messed up. the characters are really deep and flawed and terrifying. and those plot twists, hashtag 👌



my brain: you're already reading a kiersten white book and it's not going so hot so why not pick up ANOTHER ONE OF HER BOOKS 🤪🤪


buddy read with claraaa 💖
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
I finished it! But I can’t really decide how I want to rate it yet. I liked it, but I don’t think I was in the right mood to read it. But the writing was quite good, it was definitely creepy and interesting. And if you like the source material, you’ll probably find a lot to enjoy in this retelling.
Sep 14, 2018 marked it as to-read
This is intriguing.
Oct 15, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: october-tbr
I'm super conflicted on this. I loved the characters so much. Elizabeth is one of the best protagonists I have read from. She's my slytherin queen.
But this was so boring. The pacing was all over the place. There were really long stretches where nothing happened and then the action scenes went by so fast. I also fell asleep while reading it at one point which never happens so........
i would die for elizabeth and mary (view spoiler).



i... have never read frankenstein, but i will read anything kiersten white writes.

// buddy read with a babe
Merphy Napier
Oct 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: four-stars, retelling
Some things I loved:
-These characters were REALLY twisted. I loved how obsessive, and calculating these characters were throughout the novel. Very intriguing and so interesting to see how their minds worked (especially victor)
- The many nods to the original. I loved how much this book looked like the original classic without following it exactly. It was so much fun to make the connections and guess where the story would go based off the original book. There were so many beautiful nods to the or
Nadhira Satria
Oct 31, 2017 marked it as to-read
Shelves: most-anticipated
I'd read anything historical by Kiersten white
꧁ ℨαrα ꧂
Plot ~ Concept: ★★★★★
~ Execution: ★★★★☆
Pacing: ★★★★☆
Writing style: ★★★★☆
Characters: ★★★★☆
World: ★★★★★
Enjoyment: ★★★★☆

○ This book is dark, twisted and eerie, and the setting is perfect — exactly what you want from a Frankenstein retelling.
○ It also has characters who are royally messed up — also what you want from a Frankenstein retelling.
○ The author successfully made me actually sympathise with Judge Frankenstein at a certain point.
○ There were little plot twists throughou
Sep 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, in-english
"What perfection can you hope to find in death?"

I've read only one book by Kiersten White and since it turned out to be the worst book I've read in my life, I was determined not to read anything else by her ever again. I'm glad I am such a nice person and gave her second chance, to redeem herself because it payed off.

The Dark Descent Of Elizabeth Frankenstein was delightfully chilling, creepily good. The first half was slow, it took me few chapters to get into the story but then it took off

Actual rating: 3.5 stars

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein is quite an unusual book that will haunt your dreams long after you finished it.

I am a goner for dark morally ambiguous stories that make you reconsider things you never questioned before, or in the case of this story - things you thought were quite solid and unchanging. But of course, Kiersten White is a goddess sent on earth to torture us with her talent and she is beyond successful in that department *points at Now I Darken*.

Aug 19, 2018 rated it liked it
I struggled with this book and it legitimately breaks my heart.

I liked Elizabeth. I like how devoted and well meaning she is. Victor was intriguing and somehow I was rooting for both of them. There are a few other characters, but I don’t want to say anything else here.

Plot wise it was slow, but expected. My main complaint is the pages and pages and paaaaaages of description and passive action. There is very little dialogue. The story did pick up towards the end and within the last 70 or so pag
destiny ♎ [howling libraries]
Oh god whyyyy is this not in my hands yet?! I need ALL of the Kiersten White hist-fic
Beatrice ~ Confessions of a Pinay Bookaholic
Thank you Penguin Random House International for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Trigger warning: This book contains graphic scenes such as abuse, violence and gore.

Timely it's Halloween season, it's the perfect time I step away from contemporary romance and pick spooky novels. The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein is a YA Gothic Horror novel and retelling of Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I haven't read its original tale but when I finished this book, it enco
Feb 15, 2018 marked it as to-read
I will read anything by this author. A. NY. TH. IN. G.
The Reading's Love Blog

Siamo nel periodo giusto per dedicarci alla lettura di uno Young Adult gotico che è la rivisitazione del famoso romanzo intitolato Frankenstein dell’autrice Mary Shelley. Elizabeth Lavenza è una ragazza orfana che ha subìto sulla propria pelle la crudeltà e i maltrattamenti dell’orfanotrofio in cui è vissuta. La speranza arriva quando viene adottata dalla cupa famiglia Frankenstein. Nella loro casa incontra il figlio maggiore, Victor Franke
Oct 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
That was creepy and enjoyable.
I really didn't connect with Elizabeth but that didn't bother me, most of the characters were very interesting.
I really loved how feminism was effortlessly disscussed, it wasn't forced at all. It just showcased the reality of women being dependent on others to take care of them, as their voice is unheard and efforts unvalued, and how due to the fear for her life, she would do anything to please her caregivers, including losing who she truly is.
Feb 16, 2018 marked it as 2018-releases
Friendly reminder, that this book is officially out in the world, and that I get to meet Kiersten on Saturday!!!!! I AM SO EXCITED.
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Dark descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein

“Elizabeth was presented to Victor as his special friend.” I think its cute.
This was how Elizabeth came to be and how she in a sense helped Victor become The Victor Frankenstein.

That ending though!
Nitzan Schwarz
Aug 06, 2018 marked it as to-read
Got an arc in SDCC!
Bitchin' Reads
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I am happy to announce that I, Bitchin' Reads, ended up liking this book much more than my one update would lead you to believe. :)

The update I mention ranted about believability of Elizabeth piecing together previous moments to realize (view spoiler)
Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)
This review can also be found on my blog!

DNF at 61%

I’m not listing any content warnings because I didn’t catch any. Not that I’m doubting there are some, just that I was so. bored. that I didn’t make any mental note of them like I usually do.

And, I’m not joking when I say that I was SO. BORED.

I got 15 pages away from 200 and nothing had happened. There was stuff going on, but it was just a flat retelling of Frankenstein while I thought that it was going to maybe present more to the table, especi
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
Kiersten White is the New York Times bestselling author of many books for teens and young readers, including And I Darken, Now I Rise, Bright We Burn, The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein, and Slayer. She lives with her family near the ocean in San Diego, where she perpetually lurks in the shadows. Visit Kiersten online at and follow @KierstenWhite on Twitter.