English Resources

The Lancer Library Subject Resources: Social Studies: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

Much has been written about Mary Shelley and about her most famous work, Frankenstein. The Saint Francis High School Library has much of this information available in both print and online formats.


To find books about either Mary Shelley or about Frankenstein, you should try entering the word “Frankenstein” as a Keyword into the library catalog. Also, try entering Shelley, Mary as a keyword to find biographies on her. You will find books such as:

  • Mary Shelley: her Life, Her Fiction, Her Monsters
  • Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. 823.7 Sh4f
  • Spirit Like a Storm: the Story of Mary Shelley. B

Reference Books

  • British Writers. R 820.9 B77
  • Gothic Literature. R 820.911 G71
  • Novels for Students. R 809.3 N85
  • Science Fiction Writers. R 809.3 B61s

The circulating books on Shelley are either in the library or on reserve at the library desk. If on reserve, please ask to use them. Books set on reserve may only be checked out one at a time after 3:00 p.m. and must be returned by 8:00 a.m. the next day. As always, if you need help, please ask any member of the library staff to assist you. You should be able to find enough information right here in your Saint Francis Library.


Special Note - To access the databases from home, see the librarians for the list of usernames and passwords.

All library databases may be accessed from the library’s database page. The best one for this assignment is Galenet. Click on this to see a list of databases. Scroll down until you find Literature Resource Center. Click on this. Enter “Shelley, Mary” in the box.

The first list that will come up is biographical information about Shelley. You may or may not have this already from other sources. It is always interesting to read about an author’s life to see if it informed and influenced his or her work.

Note the tabs at the top of the page. The second one is Literary Criticism, Articles and Work Overviews. Click on this to find essays and articles on Shelley’s work. These are then divided into literary criticism, articles and work overviews. Literary criticism comes up first and is usually the most valuable. Most of these criticisms will be on Frankenstein as it is, by far, Shelley’s most famous work. All of these are full-text and may be accessed by clicking on them. Not all of the items labeled articles are valuable, but it is worth checking them as, frequently, some literary criticism is found here also.

Note that the full citation is given for your bibliography.

If you are unsure how to write a citation in MLA format, there are books in the library - MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. R 808.027 G35m.- and there is a link on the library’s web page under the "English" heading.

Note that since this is a subscription database, all of these criticisms and articles have been selected as well written and/or valuable to the study of Shelley’s work. However, since so much is available, you will need to read through many items, and then select what you want. This is RESEARCH! You look at many things and spend time searching to find a few valuable items. 

Remember, you can also find books at your local public libraries after all our books are checked out! Lastly, if you are having trouble finding information, what should you do? Ask us for help! Ask any of the librarians for help finding information or for citing your sources so you can avoid the dreaded PLAGIARISM!