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Dracula Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 24, 2009
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Dracula is one of the few horror books to be honored by inclusion in the Norton Critical Edition series. (The others are Frankenstein, The Turn of the Screw, Heart of Darkness, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and The Metamorphosis.) This 100th-anniversary edition includes not only the complete authoritative text of the novel with illuminating footnotes, but also four contextual essays, five reviews from the time of publication, five articles on dramatic and film variations, and seven selections from literary and academic criticism. Nina Auerbach of the University of Pennsylvania (author of Our Vampires, Ourselves) and horror scholar David J. Skal (author of Hollywood Gothic, The Monster Show, and Screams of Reason) are the editors of the volume. Especially fascinating are excerpts from materials that Bram Stoker consulted in his research for the book, and his working papers over the several years he was composing it. The selection of criticism includes essays on how Dracula deals with female sexuality, gender inversion, homoerotic elements, and Victorian fears of "reverse colonization" by politically turbulent Transylvania. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From School Library Journal
Grade 7 Up?A naive young Englishman travels to Transylvania to do business with a client, Count Dracula. After showing his true and terrifying colors, Dracula boards a ship for England in search of new, fresh blood. Unexplained disasters begin to occur in the streets of London before the mystery and the evil doer are finally put to rest. Told in a series of news reports from eyewitness observers to writers of personal diaries, this has a ring of believability that counterbalances nicely with Dracula's too-macabre-to-be-true exploits. An array of voices from talented actors makes for interesting variety. The generous use of sound effects, from train whistles to creaking doors, adds further atmosphere. Lovers of mysteries and horror will find rousing entertainment in this version of a classic tale.?Carol Katz, Harrison Public Library, NY
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Even when you have not read it is unavoidable to live in a world where Dracula influence permeates many aspects of our culture, the more you consume literature or cinema the more you know you have to read Dracula, at least to not feel the influences are not being spoilers. A time seemed I couldn't read more without crash with references to Dracula so I get one edition in Spanish and I loved so much that I have read it again in English in the AmazonClassics Edition that has a good edition and the always useful X-Ray. In my opinion this edition is better than the Kindle in Motion edition whose style of drawings translates the horror of the novel into something a bit infantile.
The novel has this sometimes misleading contrasts... the characters speak in a flourish and elaborated way, with etiquettes of a time now gone so I couldn't say they are literal or literary but they are quite rich, with many formulas of affection and old decency that filters friendship and love in its expressions, so modest that even the diaries can be read without fear of the characters to find something explicitly sensual; the count, an ancient being is more connected to our primal sides, feels inversely more connected to our times, making the idea of the language misleading as he speak without those clothes of etiquette in a more visceral way. The eroticism of the gentlemen in the case of Dracula is turned into naked sexuality; while the gentlemen utter profuse discourses of friendship the count just appear taking the bodies of the ladies and offering his body to them in wordless ways in silent nights, his words almost blend with the wind or the mist, as a half remembered dream.
XIX century is ending and the scientific optimism of the age crashes when it expands fast till touch the dark world and both are seduced: the Count study this new world with stenographs, webs of trains and vessels and customs, and feels called or even invoked by that labyrinth that is London; the group of young friends also are explorers of that time find in the world of Dracula a power that is awakening to its full intensity, that can use their modern world of laws and technology against them or bypass it totally. In both sides we have economical power, is the money, vulgar as it can be read, the bridge that connects both worlds, that make it a translator and be possible to the Count to attempt a plan to conquest London and is money what makes possible to the group of friends to take the fight across the ocean and exotic lands.
The ending is raw, miserable, nasty, in a good way as it open many questions about what happened if things had went otherwise, if a young man from London had not traveled to the castle, if Lucy's life had not been falling apart in pieces, if there was a design in the properties chosen by the Count... so many questions. This is a deep novel that deserves the title of classic.
Most recent customer reviews
Old basic book and very long and fascinating