Zastrozzi, Paperback
3 out of 5 (1 rating)


Zastrozzi, the arch-villain of the tale, is sworn to avenge the wrongs done to his mother.

Prepared to go to any lengths to execute his horrific plans, he enlists the help of the willing Matilda.

Together they vow to destroy Verezzi and Julia, the subjects of their wrath, and embark upon a fateful chain of events that can lead only on catastrophe.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Hesperus Press Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Prose: non-fiction
  • ISBN: 9781843910299



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This is a rather bizarre gothic novel, written by Shelley in his teenage years at school. It jumps to the chase as it were, beginning in medias res without any of the 'tedious' build up to the highly gothic elements.The novel (novella?) quite obviously owes much to previous gothic novels, perhaps especially Lewis's <i>The Monk</i>. In fact, I was amused when I realized that Shelley wrote <i>Zastrozzi</i> much as a modern teenager might write pastiche of something by Lovecraft or a fanfiction of any other novel.The novel itself is interesting though rather juvenile. Many times while reading, I wished to pull out a blue pencil and give Shelley suggestions on how to improve a scene or the pacing. This is not to say it's not a worthy read - I thoroughly enjoyed it as both part of my meanderings through gothic novels and as a piece of Shelley's juvenalia.

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