Friday, August 14, 2015

Dracula by Bram Stoker

Reviewed by Ambrea

Dracula is a collection of stories—journals, newspaper clippings, transcriptions and personal testimonies—from Jonathan and Mina Harker, Dr. John Seward, Lucy Westenra, Arthur Holmwood, Quincy Morris, and Dr. Abraham van Helsing, in which they confront the world’s most terrifying creature:  a vampire.

As one might expect, Dracula is a riveting story and Bram Stoker is an excellent storyteller.  Besides creating one of literature’s most fascinating—and chilling—villains, Stoker takes the time and care to recreate the details of life within his characters’ journals and letters.  And, considering the sheer volume of correspondences between characters and the specific connections necessary to complete the story, Dracula is an amazingly intricate piece of work.

In particular, I enjoyed the marked differences between characters.  Each individual has their own personality, their own history, and their own reactions to a situation or experience.  Each has a singular voice, a unique way of telling their story that makes them memorable and utterly captivating.  They are honest, endearing folks and they have a frightening, fascinating story to tell.

Truthfully, Dracula has it all for the horror enthusiast:  guts, gore, mayhem, madness, death, destruction and, of course, vampires.  It’s a dark and delightful treat, and it’s definitely a story I would recommend reading at least once.

By the same token, all the details involved in Stoker’s novel makes his work a bit tricky.  Once I finally made the connections, it was easy to find those tenuous links between characters and locations and mysterious events; however, those connections can sometimes prove slightly elusive.

Moreover, chapters can occasionally take a while to build up to a climactic point.  The story picks up considerably when certain realizations come together, when the characters are in danger of not only losing their lives but their immortal souls. Before that point, the narrative may seem a little lackluster and disjointed, but the reader who perseveres will be well rewarded.

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