Anne Eekhout / Anne Eekhout – Mary

Anne Eekhout – Mary

Anne Eekhout – Mary

Rights sold

  • Pushkin Press (UK, ANZ)
  • Gallimard (France)
  • HarperCollins/HarperVia (USA, Canada)
  • Neri Pozza (Italy)
  • btb-Verlag (Germany)
  • Libri (Hungary)
  • Fraktura (Croatia)
  • Gutkind (Denmark)
  • Kustantamo S&S (Finland)
  • Colibri (Bulgaria)
  • Dobrovský (Czech Republic)
  • Marginesy (Poland)
  • China Translation and Publishing House (China)

Read our sample translation of Mary

About the book

The year is 1816 when Mary Shelly, only eighteen years of age, creates the iconic story of Frankenstein’s monster. It is the same summer that Mary and her lover Percy Shelley visit Lord Byron and John Polidori at Lake Geneva. The friends spend long evenings by the fire, drinking laudanum-infused wine while reading one another ghost stories. One night Lord Byron suggests that they each write a ghost story of their own and this triggers a memory in Mary, taking her back four years earlier to Scotland, where she spent the summer and met Isabella Baxter. As Mary falls in love with Isabella, they are plunged into an enigmatic adventure in which imagination and reality prove to be equally strong components. It is from this memory that her story about Frankenstein’s monster arises. Anne Eekhout brings the young mother, feminist avant la lettre and writer Mary Shelley to life in a highly original novel that is crafted from real historic events and imbued with great imagination.

Mary has appeared at the right moment but is first and foremost the right book. A compelling novel, full of elegantly worded observations and horrifying stories; a novel about horrifying stories, horrific experiences and how they flow into each other. Mary is a perfectly balanced blend of genres. Eekhout daringly plays with genre elements that would immediately become clichés in the hands of lesser authors. She, however, brings them powerfully to life.’ – Het Parool

‘She knows how to tell stories. Eekhout keeps up the tension, suggests a great deal, does not spell out much. The book is addictive, too.’ – de Volkskrant

‘There is thunder and lightning in this book. The young Mary’s love of telling stories bubbles off the pages. This is far and away my favourite. Eekhout writes fantastically well.’ – Panel member’s book choice, Algemeen Dagblad

‘Anne Eekhout is one of the most interesting young authors writing today.’ – Hanna Bervoets, author of We Had To Remove This Post

‘Eekhout pulls you into her story with playful ease to then not let you go again until the final page. Her imagination is convincing and compelling, her suspense-building brilliant.’ – Financieel Dagblad

‘Mary is incredibly gripping. In this new work, just as in her three previously published novels, Anne Eekhout is a master stylist. Her sentences are a delight, her images and comparisons virtually always hit home, and her story grips the reader tightly. Mary is an exceptionally good book.’ – Nederlands Dagblad

‘An exemplary coming-of-age novel. Eekhout has got the popular nineteenth-century genre down to a fine art.’ **** – Telegraaf

‘In Mary, writer Anne Eekhout takes you not only into the life of Frankenstein’s creator, but especially into her mind. And that is the power of this book: it is an ode to the imagination, and the art of creation. As well as how unusual it is that Mary, as a woman in the nineteenth century, does create.’ – Chosen as favourite book of 2021 by Malouk van der Velden, De Correspondent

‘Eekhout doesn’t just give her Mary a convincing voice, she also sketches an impressive and balanced picture of the first decade of the nineteenth century.’ **** – Knack

‘Anne Eekhout originally fills in an unknown chapter of Mary’s life. Thanks to her imagination, you think differently about the origins of Frankenstein’s monster. What Isabella and Mary experienced together could very well have happened. It is to Eekhout’s credit that you believe so.’ – Tzum

‘A wonderful novel.’ –


Anne Eekhout (b. 1981) made her debut in 2014 with the novel Dogma, which was nominated for the Bronzen Uil Prize for best debut. In 2017 she published One Night (nominated for the BNG Literature Prize), and in 2019 Nicolas and the Disappearance of the World, which was selected as the Best Book for Young Adults.

© Keke Keukelaar

Additional book information

  • Novel
  • ISBN 9789403153315
  • Number of pages: 384
  • World rights: De Bezige Bij
  • Price: €24,99
  • English sample available