Dracula

Bram Stoker

Copyright 1996 (Modern library edition)

Bram Stoker was born November 8, 1847, in Clontarf Ireland, north of Dublin. His full name was Abraham Stocker. He was the son of Abraham and Charlotte. He was the third of seven children. For the first 7 years of his life Bram was bedridden with a flurry of childhood diseases. This led him to spend much of his time reading. Later in his life, after healing from his diseases, he attended Trinity College in Dublin. There, he was an honor student, played soccer, and was involved in marathon running. After he graduated from college he followed in his fathersí footsteps, and became a civil servant at Dublin castle as a junior clerk. He began his literary career in 1871, when he took up a post as the unpaid drama critic for the Evening Mail, while he was also writing short stories. His first literary success came in 1872, when the London Society published his short story The Crystal Cup. Bram Stoker encountered Henry Irving, who he had once critiqued while he was at Trinity College. Stoker saw his portrayal of the role Hamlet and wrote a favorable review of it. Irving was impressed with Stoker\'s review. This resulted in Irving inviting Stoker backstage and from there a good friendship was formed.

In 1878. Irving had taken over his own theater company called the London Lyceum. He didn\'t like the management, and therefore approached Stoker to handle the business. Stoker gave up his civil servants jobs to go work for Irving. Shortly after, Stoker began his new career, the publishing house of Sampson. He was contacted with interest in making a collection of "Stoker Stories". Under the Sunset was published in 1891, and was well received by some of the critics, but others thought the book would not be good for children. By the time Stoker had written The Snake\'s Pass (1890), he was already started working on a novel with a vampire theme. Dracula was then published in June 1897. Reviews on Dracula were mixed. In a favorable review, the Daily Mail compared it with Frankenstein and Poe\'s The Fall of the House of Usher. Others found it to be a good book but said that the descriptions were "hideous and repulsive. After Dracula came out, things started to go downhill for Stoker. Stoker published The Jewel of the 7 Stars in 1903, a book based on information from Egypt. In 1905, his close friend Irving, died. One year after Irving\'s death. Stoker wrote Personal Reminiscences of Henry Irving. Stoker managed to write other novels after this point, until he died in 1912, of syphilis, at the age of 64.

The story begins in 19th century Europe, in the country of Transylvania. A salesman from England, named Jonathan Harker, is sent to meet with an old Count named Dracula, at his castle located far from
civilization. The people of Transylvania who become aware of his
destination begin giving him garlic and blessings. Mr. Harker soon feels uneasy about visiting the Count. He arrives at Castle Dracula, regardless, and meets with Dracula. He then realizes the Count is a blood-sucking creature. He can also control the elements and animals with a wave of his hand. Harker escapes, but the Count has devised an intricate plan to move to London and exercise his evil forces on innocent people there. However, a group of friends, including a professor, a psychologist, an American, a rich man, as well as Mr. Harker and his wife Mina, learn of the Count\'s sinister plan. They decided to stop him before he can make the people of London part of his army of vampires. They systematically destroy his coffins with holy wafers and chase him out of England back to Castle Dracula. There they carry out their plan to destroy Dracula.

The theme of Dracula is of a very powerful vampire. The Vampire, Count Dracula, has come up with a plan to get himself to London where he can gather the innocent people to be in his army of un-dead. The story is written in the form of diary entries from different people involved, and also from newspaper clippings. In order to understand the book fully one has to read the entries of all the people. Dracula