The Modern Library, New York, 2001
Borrowed from the library.
This is not a review, more a collection of thoughts. Read for the R.I.P V challenge, this vampire novel brought back memories of my introduction to Count Dracula. Bela Lugosi’s chilling portrayal gave my sister and myself nightmares, though I have to admit the idea of being able to change into a bat was fascinating. Dracula was not the first but is certainly the most famous vampire story. I have read that Stoker was inspired by Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla, a novella published is 1872 and available at Project Gutenberg.
Stoker’s novel, written as a series of letters and journal entries and published in 1897, is atmospheric and fast paced in places, overwrought and melodramatic in others. This is my second reading and, filled with ideas of class and culture of the time and written in odd dialects, I found myself skimming in places that seemed to go on and on. I am curious about the reactions to Dracula when it was first published, not so much the responses of critics or psychoanalysts, but the general public.
It is interesting, how this one novel has influenced so much modern popular culture, from movies to books and television. I must reread my all time favorite vampire novel, just to see how it compares, and then watch “Let The Right One In”. If you haven’t seen this film I recommend it. It is frighteningly beautiful. I would also like to read the novel the film is based on.