“Do you not think that there are things which you cannot understand, and yet which are; that some people see things that others cannot? But there are things old and new which must not be contemplate by men´s eyes, because they know -or think they know- some things which other men have told them. Ah, it is the fault of our science that it wants to explain all; and if it explain not, then it says there is nothing to explain.”
― Bram Stoker, Dracula
Dracula by Bram Stoker is my favorite book of all time. Not the rewritten versions that soften out the Old English slang… the original 1897 version. I first read Dracula when I was 12 years old… and even though I was young I understood the flowy Old English prose easily. The adults in my life at the time were confused, I had an English teacher who took the book from me one day and asked, “This is a big book, do you even know what it’s about?” After I finished regurgitating the entire story back to him he stopped questioning me and what books I brought to class.
I loved the style of the book and how old it was. To me, reading a book written in the 1800’s gave it this beautiful sense of mystery, it was a whole different time period that is long gone and that we will never get to experience. Obviously there were no vampires (that we know of), but the book still brings me so much joy to read and to think back on the time it was written.
The book is written using a series of diary entries, letters and newspaper articles. This gives it a very intimate and personal feel as you get to see the characters own thoughts and feelings through their own words. He keeps you on edge throughout the story through these entries as you are never reading the story in real time, you are always reading an entry from a few days previous. I love this style as you feel like you are in the characters head and are seeing the story from their perspective, not from your perspective as an outside reader to the story. You feel like you are there.
In my mind Dracula is the ideal vampire. He isn’t like Edward Cullen where he goes to high school and sparkles in the sunlight. Dracula is feared. The entire premise of the book is him trying to ship himself across Europe to create more vampires and spread his curse to others… which he definitely succeeds in. It is the ideal, classic vampire book that every person who enjoys Gothic Horror should read. Especially the 1897 version, it is written how Bram Stoker wrote it and reading books in their original form is so special and beautiful. Seriously, go pick up a copy you will not regret it!