This Dark Endeavor moved me to tears. I think I was living under a rock because this is the first book by Kenneth Oppel I ever read. Such an unforgivable sin! I will definitely read more of his book! But, once again, I am very short of words to express how much I love this book because this was absolute perfection!
As a fan of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein myself, I have to say that Oppel blew my mind with this book. He created Victor Frankenstein's early years and illustrated the reasons and facts, that lead young Victor to become the famous Dr. Frankenstein. Oppel is a genius expressing characters' emotions. We can easily see the complex psychology of Victor and what makes him the way he is. His reasons for the search of the Elixir of Life are a complex collision of devoted brotherly love and jealousy. The Victor Frankenstein we meet at the beginning of the book is just a kid with complexes and insecurities that put him on the road of obsession for triumph. To find the cure, for Victor's severely sick identical twin, is the original seed that motivates him to create the Elixir of Life. To prove himself and others better than his perfect twin, jealousy and a love for a girl who does not reciprocate his feelings, are the fuel to Victor's veins that nourishes his obsession. But regardless all this mix of feelings, it is Victor's infinite love for his brothel is that moved me to tears. Science and Faith are both equally strong points of This Dark Endeavor. How people deal with what they want and how people deal with pain. I really love this aspect of the book because it doesn't separate both of them into 100% different categories, as we usually tempt to do. In this case, it is not always a matter of Science or Faith but Science and Faith working altogether. Devotion, love and sacrifice are only the tip of the iceberg. Kenneth Oppel teach us a life lesson through Victor's experience. Love combined with despair leads to recklessness. And recklessness combines with selfish motives leads to guilt. So much I would like to say, but I cannot do that without giving anything away.
Oppel's writing style is beautiful and poetic. It warmed my heart read some of those verses and it gave me chills read others(yes, there are so scary creepy parts). The setting is beautifully shaped! A centuries old Castle near Geneve with an ancient dark library, near a river, with beautiful sunsets everyday. Kenneth Oppel gave me the place of my dreams!
I would like to say so much more about what this book gave me but I think I already said too much. I want you to get This Dark Endeavor and read it because this is the kind of book you could recommend to everyone! doesn't matter the age or taste. And I know that This Dark Endeavor will absolutely be a bright spot in your life.