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Review: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Review by Pauline Creeden

Happy Halloween everyone! For this especially frightful day, I’m reviewing one of my classic favorites, Dracula. This spellbinding Gothic Horror has been trumped up by Hollywood into something that it’s not. As a result, it is grossly misunderstood. There are no rivers of blood, graphic sexual scenes, or gratuitous violence held within these pages. Instead you find what many might consider clean, albeit creepy, Christian horror.

Christian horror? Isn’t that an oxymoron? Surprisingly, no. When you have an ultimate evil, a lover of darkness, what better opposition than the ultimate good, or bringer of light?

Instead of focusing on the overwhelming darkness and sensual inferrences portrayed in the hollywood version, Bram Stoker presents the gothic tale of a newly engaged couple whose engagement is wrought havoc upon by an unfortunate business trip. Johnathan and Mina Harker are the main characters of the novel, which concentrates on their struggles through a series of letters and diary entries. The driving romance is between this couple, and not between the wife and an undead lover.

The Francis Ford Coppola movie staring Gary Oldman was released in 1992 with the perfect traditionally artistic backdrops and costumes. In that respect, the movie is still a masterpiece. I remember seeing it my freshman year of college and being stunned enough to vow to read the book. Even though the impressive movie is what originally drew me to the novel, as usual, I enjoyed the novel so much more. It is a twisted tale of suspense that should not be missed or misjudged by its film.


Dracula by Bram Stoker [Annotated] is available for Kindle!
(There is a free version, but it is poorly formatted)

2 comments on “Review: Dracula by Bram Stoker

  1. Jeff Chapman
    October 31, 2012

    I think I read the book before I read the movie, but I remember the book more than the film. It’s interesting how the characters use state of the art (for Victorian times) technology in their struggle with Dracula. Modern readers probably find all the devices quaint but it probably had a much different meaning to contemporary readers. If you liked Dracula, you should check out LeFanu’s Carmilla. It preceded Dracula by a couple decades and influenced Stoker.

    • P. Creeden
      October 31, 2012

      You’re right – it’s almost steampunkish in that way – and I’ll have to look up Carmilla – I’ve never read it before!

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This entry was posted on October 31, 2012 by in Book Reviews.

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