Penguin Publishing Group | October 2018 | 512 pgs
Source: Library

We are all aware that Bram Stoker is the author of the timeless classic horror, Dracula. Dacre Stoker, Bram's great-grandnephew, together with author J.D. Barker, cowrite this prequel inspired through Bram's journals and notes and tell readers not only about the origins of the scary vampire which haunts our dreams but also a story of Bram and an enigmatic woman who bound them together. 

The year is 1854. Seven-year-old Bram Stoker is a sickly child and spend most of his time in bed in their Dublin's home, tended by a caretaker named Ellen Crone. The Stokers hired the young woman by chance after their previous caretaker left in a haste; and while the Stokers are skeptical of Ellen's enigmatic behaviours in the beginning, they soon get used of her characteristics given how Bram seem to get better under her care. Although Bram has a few other siblings, it is Matilda, his sister who's a year older, whom he share a deep bond with. As much as both of them adore Ellen, there are times that they couldn't put a finger on Ellen's actions and why she would leave the house for a few days and then return as if nothing happens. But what most perplexing is her appearance as she could be glowing today and then haggard the next. To unravel the mystery surrounding Ellen, Bram and Matilda did a little investigation and learned of her unknown side. 

Back to the present in 1868 when Bram is an adult, we "find" him secured in a locked room at an abandoned abbey trying to fend off some monster which is on his trail. With time running out and hoping that help would be on its way, he hurriedly writes down all the events right from the start till what have brought him to the present and this begins the tale of Dracul

Dracul is both a horror and a love story at its best. Told from two timelines through various sources like journals, diary entries, letters and notes, as well as a segment on a few narrators who also play an important role in this story (e.g. Matilda and Thornley Stoker, and Dr Arminius VambĂ©ry who has some knowledge in vampirism). I find all the characters intriguing here; and I've to say Matilda was my favourite character among all. She's feisty since a young girl and we continue to see her bravery side and determination right up to her adulthood. Then, there's the close-knit relationship she had with Bram that I find rather heartwarming at times. 

And if Bram is the leading role, then Ellen is the star of this story. There is so much I wanted to talk about her yet it wouldn't be fun if I indulge all her mysterious side and secrets; likewise the plot. As you can tell, I enjoyed the wild ride immensely. "Wow!" is an understatement of how I felt after closing this book and I hope you'll pick up this book quickly.

Note: This is a scheduled post as I'm currently on vacation. Blog hop and comments will resume after my return. Happy reading! 

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8 Responses
  1. Lark Says:

    This is on my To Read list! I love the story of Dracula and totally want to read this I'm very glad to hear that you liked it. Hope you're having fun on your vacation! :)

  2. jenclair Says:

    I love Dracula and have read several modern versions as well. This one is definitely on my list, especially with a character named Ellen Crone!

  3. Iliana Says:

    This sounds fantastic! I absolutely loved Dracula when I finally read it a few years ago so I think I need to add this one to my bookshelf. Hope you are enjoying your vacation, Melody!

  4. The Bookworm Says:

    Glad you enjoyed this one so much. I read Dracula many years ago and liked it. I'll have to add this to my wishlist.
    Enjoy your vacation!

  5. Melody Says:

    Lark - I think you might like this book, Lark. :)

  6. Melody Says:

    Jenclair - It was a great story and I'm so glad I read it. Ellen Crone was one fascinating character.

  7. Melody Says:

    Iliana - I'm sure this book will captivate fans of Dracula. And as for readers who haven't read Dracula, all the more to read this first before indulging Dracula. :)

  8. Melody Says:

    Naida - Seems like many readers have enjoyed reading Dracula. I hope you'll enjoy this one too. :)

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