Book Review: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Title: Dracula
Author: Bram Stoker
Stars: 4

Wikipedia synopsis: Dracula is an 1897 Gothic horror novel by Irish author Bram Stoker.
Famous for introducing the character of the vampire Count Dracula, the novel tells the story of Dracula’s attempt to move from Transylvania to England, and the battle between Dracula and a small group of men and women led by Professor Abraham Van Helsing.
Dracula has been assigned to many literary genres including vampire literature, horror fiction, the gothic novel and invasion literature. The novel touches on themes such as the role of women in Victorian culture, sexual conventions, immigration, colonialism, and post-colonialism. Although Stoker did not invent the vampire, he defined its modern form, and the novel has spawned numerous theatrical, film and television interpretations.

Written in the form of letters, diary entries and other documents, Stoker tells of how Dracula moved from Transylvania to England, the havoc that he caused and his eventual demise. Set in the 1800’s the language is at times interesting and makes for slow going. It can also be clearly seen how society has progressed since then. What the stresses of such knowledge will do to a poor womans mind is beyond modern day belief. Besides a few things from years gone by that I would love to have experienced, seen and worn, I am glad that I’m a 1980’s child. Free to think and believe what I will and with due respect to others be able to verbalise my beliefs.

“Welcome to my house! Enter freely. Go safely, and leave something of the happiness you bring!”
The welcoming words of Dracula to Jonathan Harker upon his arrival at Draculas Transylvanian home. Thus all the ensuing trouble begins when Dracula leaves Harker to his intended death to move to England and prey on Mina Murray (Harkers fiancé) and Lucy Westenra (Minas close friend). Dr Van Helsing who looked after Westenra until her death is the first to realise what it happening and together with Harker, Murray, Dr John Seward, Quincey Morris and Arthur Holmwood (fiancé or husband of Westenra) they drive Dracula out of England and destroy him with minutes to spare just before he reaches is home in Transylvania.

Stoker originally partly based his character on Vlad the Impaler and Dracula has become one of the most well known characters of fiction. It’s definitely worth reading and I will be revising these pages in the future.


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