Stoker, Bram

About the Author:

 

Abraham Stoker was born in Clontarf near Dublin, Ireland on 8th of November, 1847.  He earned an honours degree from Trinity College, Dublin, where, as head of the University's Philosophical Society, he met and befriended Oscar Wilde.  Between 1878 and 1905, as well as writing, he worked as manager of the Lyceum Theater in London.  Stoker died on the 20th of April, 1912.

 

AVERAGE REVIEW SCORE:

5 out of 5

(1 book)

Dracula

My second favourite book of all time (after 'The Hobbit'), I cannot express properly just how much better off you'll be if you read this book.  It is a sad fact that, thanks mostly to Hollywood, Dracula is a name that no one really takes seriously anymore.  This means that a great number of people turn their noses up at Bram Stoker's masterpiece.  Truly their loss. 

Stoker uses the brilliant idea of constructing his novel from the various characters' diaries, journals, correspondence and, in the case of one of my favourite parts, newspaper articles.  This means that we as the readers get to read the events of the story through the very eyes of those in it and, more importantly perhaps, the story builds like a jigsaw puzzle as each character experiences a different piece.  This allows Stoker to build the tension in the story in a way that I've never experienced in any other book. 

The characters are wonderfully touching creations too, be it the emotional, but surprisingly strong-willed Mina; Jonathan Harker, who goes through Hell and returns galvanised; or my favourite (and clearly the author's, since he gives the character his own name) Abraham Van Helsing. 

The core of the story involves a disparate group of men finding the courage and the motivation to confront a power they know may be beyond them and in that sense, 'Dracula' touches upon the mythological cultural subconscious that would later be exploited by such great storytellers as J. R. R. Tolkien and George Lucas. 

As you'll have guessed by this review, I absolutely love this book and can't recommend it enough.  Really; if you read this you'll never be able to watch a bad Dracula movie again (I'm looking at you 'Van Helsing', and the insultingly-named 'Bram Stoker's Dracula').

5 out of 5

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