Book Review: Dracula

Dracula — A review

Dracula first written by Bram Stoker is a novel that I am remiss to report that I spent a good portion of my young life without. Please do not be like me.

The novel is presented in the form of letters and diary entries that are written accounts of the events of a colorful cast of characters including Mr. and Mrs. Jonathon Harker, Dr. Vanhelsing and Mr. Quincy Morris.

The first character who’s account we read is that of Jonathon Harker. From the first page, we can gather that Harker is an astute English gentleman in every sense of the word. He is sent by a dear friend, a theme that will be ever present in the novel, to a Count Dracula’s estate in Transylvania as a favor to his friend to ensure the order and ease of the Count’s move to England. Jonathan knows not of the treachery that wait for him so he kindly goes to complete his task. He is met at first with little sign to worry but over the course of his journey endures more and more signs of hostility and danger. Jonathon never acquiesces. He makes it to the castle with his head on his shoulders and the resolve to complete the task given to him by his dear friend.

It is here the true horror is unveiled. The imagery of your liberty being taken away, the separation from loved ones, the literal threat of otherworldly evils are all present but that doesn’t make the horror in the novel. The horror comes from seeing a man like Jonathon broken down by it. When a man of virtue shudders in the face of evil, you shudder with him.

Dracula’s themes are what makes it so special. The iron will and the unshakable friendship (through god) that allow Men to do the impossible. Jonathon Harker’s devotion to his journal and wife ultimately make the slaying of Dracula possible. The entire cast must rely on each other in the face of great evil. When they fail, you feel pity because you know that without it, the fate of the world is at stake.

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