Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Reading Dracula

Have you ever read Dracula? Yesterday I sat down in my pajamas and finished off the last few gripping chapters. I'd borrowed a copy from a friend who hates the spines of her books to be broken and I'm a serial book-bender, so I instantly felt relieved that I'd managed to get to the end with minimal damage, especially as the plot was so exciting. I'd never read a book by Irish-born Bram Stoker before (which is a bit of a sin when you work in literature, in Dublin), but last week I was helping out at a local Stoker conference, so it was the perfect chance to read his most famous novel and hear some incredible scholars (and even Stoker's great, great-grandson) speak about him.

When I began reading Dracula the other week, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. As I've mentioned before, I scare quite easily and usually stick to reading material that won't give me nightmares, but as I began reading about the strange Count, his supernatural powers, his intimate, psychical attacks, and the race to find and destroy him, I found that this novel actually gave me a real thrill (even though I did get the creeps at some points). While I did find the novel was a little too long in places, making my attention waver, and the representation of women was very one-dimensional and far too sugary, Dracula was definitely a real page-turner and also very thought provoking. I'd be interested to hear if you've read any of Stoker's other novels, and particularly: how did you feel about Dracula if you'd like to share?

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