Monday, September 10, 2012

Review: This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel

This Dark Endeavour
(The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein #1)

Author: Kenneth Oppel

Publication Date: August 22nd, 2011

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers

Genre: Historical Fiction / Fantasy



Victor and Konrad are the twin brothers Frankenstein. They are nearly inseparable. Growing up, their lives are filled with imaginary adventures...until the day their adventures turn all too real. They stumble upon The Dark Library, and secret books of alchemy and ancient remedies are discovered. Father forbids that they ever enter the room again, but this only peaks Victor's curiosity more. When Konrad falls gravely ill, Victor is not be satisfied with the various doctors his parents have called in to help. He is drawn back to The Dark Library where he uncovers an ancient formula for the Elixir of Life. Elizabeth, Henry, and Victor immediately set out to find assistance in a man who was once known for his alchemical works to help create the formula.

Determination and the unthinkable outcome of losing his brother spur Victor on in the quest for the three ingredients that will save Konrads life. After scaling the highest trees in the Strumwald, diving into the deepest lake caves, and sacrificing one’s own body part, the three fearless friends risk their lives to save another.

My Thoughts: Oh how I love Kenneth Oppel's writing. I haven't read a whole lot by him, but what I have read, I loved. Also, he's a Canadian author, eh? Sorry, had to say it. I'm so guilty of saying it all the time. He is just an awesome author and his words have a way of sucking me into the story. Needless to say, I had heard a lot of great things about this book, so I had to read it. I wasn't disappointed in the least. It was amazing and had me hooked from the beginning.

This Dark Endeavour is about a teenaged Victor Frankenstein and his twin brother, Konrad. It's told from Victor's perspective and Oppel does great showing how he has a little resentment for his brother. He was the second one born, he's always second in everything. Kanrad is just so much more likeable than Victor. Then Konrad falls ill and is close to death, Victor will stop at nothing to save his twin. He finds a recipes for the Elixir of Life and knows that's what he needs to save Konrad. With the help of their friends and an old Alchemist, Victor begins his dabbling with alchemy to save his brother.

I loved Victor as a character, he is a little scary sometimes, but only because he is so passionate about what he wants. He works hard to achieve what comes naturally to Konrad, although when he discovers he has feelings for Elizabeth and that Konrad has beaten him there as well, it becomes too much for Victor. You would think that he wouldn't want to help save Konrad after that, but brotherly love wins out every time for him. Victor has such amazing determination, it's hard not to sympathize with him.

Without giving away any spoilers, I cannot believe how this book ended, it was a hug shock for me and I wasn't expecting it at all!! Needless to say, I will definitely be picking up a copy of Such Wicked Intent as soon as possible to see what happens nexxt, I really need to know!! And yes, there is a bit of a love triangle going on in the series, but I don't think it will prevail ;) I highly recommend giving this series a try if you haven't already. It's a great read!


  1. I'm glad you loved this one! I did, too. I had never read any Kenneth Oppel before and you're right -- his writing is fantastic! I really look forward to the next book in this series!

    Thanks for sharing, Jenn!

    1. Thanks for stopping by!

      I really enjoyed it! It was a great read and I can't wait to get ahold of the next book to read through it!

  2. Oh wow, this sounds like a good one! I haven't heard of it before.


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