Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Book Review: Dracula
For the last book club, we went with a Halloween theme and read Dracula, by Bram Stroker. And as you know, vampires are so hot right now! I must confess that I was a bit intimidated by Dracula (the book, not the vampire, although I would certainly be intimidated by him were we to ever meet). It's long and it was written more than 100 years ago, which for some reason, made me assume that it might be a difficult and tedious read, not to mention scary. In fact, the opposite was true- Dracula was pure entertainment, full of action and suspense. It almost reads like a movie script, which makes sense if you think about it- before movies and television existed, people read for entertainment, and what do the people like? Fast-paced, exciting stories filled with vivid imagery (like Count Dracula crawling down the wall of his castle, lizard-style) and interesting characters, such as uber vampire hunter Van Hesling and a good-ole boy Texan, Quincey Morris. The novel is written as a collection of journal entries and correspondence between the central characters and starts out with the journal of a young English lawyer, Jonathan Harker, on his way to Transylvania to conduct business with a new client, a foreign count named...Dracula! We as readers know that Dracula is like, the most famous vampire ever, and the local townspeople try to persuade Harker to cancel his trip to Dracula's castle and foist rosaries upon him, but he remains blissfully naive until he spends a few days at the castle and notices a string of oddities. I'll spare you the rest of the details, but I will recommend Dracula as a fun book to read, especially if you want to bone up on vampire lore. I still need to watch the movie version with Gary Oldman.