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Bram Stoker's Lair of the White Worm

2.9 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0646418421
ISBN-10: 0646418424
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Abraham (Bram) Stoker was an Irish writer, best known for his Gothic classic Dracula, which continues to influence horror writers and fans more than 100 years after it was first published. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, in science, mathematics, oratory, history, and composition, Stoker' s writing was greatly influenced by his father' s interest in theatre and his mother' s gruesome stories about her childhood during the cholera epidemic in 1832. Although a published author of the novels Dracula, The Lady of the Shroud, and The Lair of the White Worm, and his work as part of the literary staff of The London Daily Telegraph, Stoker made his living as the personal assistant of actor Henry Irving and the business manager of the Lyceum Theatre in London. Stoker died in 1912, leaving behind one of the most memorable horror characters ever created.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Deodand Publishing (October 10, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0646418424
  • ISBN-13: 978-0646418421
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.3 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,386,005 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Dawn Gray on February 15, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read "Lair of the White Worm" many many years ago and this Deodand version is not the original. It has been edited. One word has been changed throughout the book, but only in specific places: The 'good guys' do not say the "N" word, they say "native." The 'bad guys' use the "N" word.

I enjoy the story, mostly because I adore Victorian fiction. I do not, however, enjoy a book that has been edited a century after the author's death in order to save the reader from words that are not acceptable any more.
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Format: Paperback
Adam Salton, born and raised in Australia, is contacted by his granduncle in England, for the purpose of establishing a relationship between these last two members of the family. Adam travels to Richard Salton's house in Mercia, and quickly finds himself in the center of some inexplicable occurrences.

The new heir to the Caswall estate, Edgar Caswall appears to be making some sort of a mesmeric assault on a local girl. And, a local lady, Arabella March, seems to be running a game of her own, perhaps angling to become Mrs. Caswall. There is something strange about Lady March, something inexplicable and evil.

This book has elements that should make it a gripping story. Unfortunately, the tendency of the characters to move on, after a fantastic event, as if nothing unusual had happened gives the story a disjointed, surreal feel. This story just does not come together, but rambles along to its uninspiring conclusion. I do not recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I would have given this book zero stars if it were possible. I don't know what Bram Stoker was thinking, but this may be one of the worst stories that I've ever read. The narrative is undeveloped, occasionally incoherent, and there are many better books from the late nineteenth/early twentieth century that tackle the same issues but with much more success. If you love Dracula, then definitely steer clear of Lair of the White Worm, as it may ruin Stoker for you.
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Format: Paperback
This is considered minor Stoker. The characterization and pacing are uneven and consistently bonkers. The writing is often cringeworthy with the exception of some sublime passages in chapters 10 and 28. Some attribute the weirdness and mediocrity of this book to Stoker writing it late in life, his brain and ideas ripened by syphilitic fever, but there doesn't seem to be any proof of this fantastic scenario. Regardless, this strange shorter work of fiction is arguably the Stoker's dark horse. While not for everyone, fans of outsider art, surrealist fiction or maximalist genre exercises will undoubtedly recognize it as a diamond in the rough. Stoker's treatment of postcolonial themes and Victorian gender tropes leaves familiar genre mainstays turned on their heads. The text is jammed with cameos from virtually all conceivable cliches that comprise Gothic and period fantasy/science fiction, but Stoker deliberately presents them as ridiculous and over the top. Some critics note that The Lair of the White Worm bears similarities to Dracula as an example of reverse colonialism that comments on the state of imperialist culture at the end of the Victorian and Edwardian eras. Analysis aside, this book is crazy fun for anyone who appreciates raw creativity without a lot of polish. Fans of H. P. Lovecraft, Stephen King and Philip K. Dick, terrible but creative writers whose imaginative ideas eclipse their technical abilities, might find The Lair of the White Worm especially worthwhile.
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Format: Paperback
This book is incoherent. Stoker describes how a character has been sent away for their safety, then in the next scene they're back, no explanation provided. It seems like the author forgot where he was headed with the plot. Parts of this book read like a satire of the horror genre, with stilted English people and laughing megalomaniacs. It's also the most racist piece of writing I've come across, outside of textbook examples of people trying to justify slavery. In short, great though Dracula is, "Lair" isn't worth your time.
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