- Percy Bysshe Shelley
"Zastrozzi" is a a dramatic tale of romance and revenge written by Percy Bysshe Shelley where he adroitly exploits the classic elements of popular Gothic horror. This short and intensely emotional novel -first published when Shelley was only eighteen in 1810— combines adolescent vigour and literary panache with occasional sparks of true poetic genius.
Shelley's vivid love story dramatises the misplaced passion between Matilda, Contessa di Laurentinini, Verezzi, the object of her crazed desire, and Matilda's murderous accomplice, the mysterious Zastrozzi. When Matilda discovers that her love is unrequited, she traps Verezzi in her castle and orders Zastrozzi to kill Julia — the woman Verezzi loves. But Zastrozzi has his own agenda...