Dracula by Bram Stoker is a well known Gothic classic, and the basis of much of pop cultures view on vampires. So of course I had to start this one in October!
I had expected this to be just fine. An acceptable classic, nothing special. I was proved wrong, because I really enjoyed this book!
The beginning of this book, I will admit, doesn’t reflect the rest of the novel. The first 7 or so chapters were what I had expected from a classic. But I will say I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly we jumped into the vampire storyline! With my familiarity with classics I’d assumed this wouldn’t happen until later! Although the word vampire actually isn’t used in the book until surprisingly far in.
Mina is by far my favourite character, she’s a strong woman who is written well with Stoker proving that men can write accurate portrayals of women since 1897 *cough* Ken Follett *cough*. She’s tough and intelligent, enough so to impress the male doctors around her, whilst also reacting with realistic distress to the events (rather than being overly “strong” about them). Additionally the men in the group are also written very well, I enjoyed seeing their responses and how their views altered over time. Stoker does a very good job at writing realistic and empathetic people.
I was aware of the basic outline of the plot, but never the actual details and so it was a lot of fun for me to experience that for the first time here. I thought that it was paced very well, with realistic set backs and wins, and I was hooked for each set of events.
On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 9, Atmosphere: 9, Writing: 8, Plot: 9, Intrigue: 9, Logic: 9, Enjoyment: 10 meaning an average of 9 and a 5* rating.
Highlight here for content warnings: abduction, character, death, fear, inprisonment, murder, paranormal creatures, trichotillomania (brief).
This has immediately been added to my list of favourite classics. Bram Stoker is a feminist and I dare to you tell me otherwise 😂 I really do recommend pushing through the first 7-9 chapters of this one if you’re not immediately enjoying it. The payoff is (in my opinion) more than worth the effort of those few chapters. Now to find some more of Stoker’s work!
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