Wow! What a quick beginning of the week! As I’ve indicated in previous posts, I’m currently reading Bram Stoker’s classic Dracula. I’m finding that I’m immensely enjoying it so far! As of this writing, I’m on chapter fourteen.
I can definitely see why readers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries would find this book full of horror and mystery. From the deep descriptions, especially of Dracula. Take for example this description from chapter two pages 20 and 22-23:
Within, stood a tall old man, clean shaven save for a long white moustache, and clad in black from head to foot, without a single speck of colour about him anywhere.
His face was a strong-a very strong-aquiline, with high bridge of the thin nose and peculiarly arched nostrils; with lofty domed forehead, and hair growing scantily round the temples, but profusely elsewhere. His eyebrows were very massive, almost meeting over the nose, and with bushy hair that seemed to curl in its own profusion. The mouth, so far as I could see it under the heavy moustache, was fixed and rather cruel-looking, with peculiarly sharp white teeth; these protruded over the lips, whose remarkable ruddiness showed astonishing vitality in a man of his years. For the rest, his ears were pale and at the tops extremely pointed; the chin was broad and strong, and the cheeks firm though thin. The general effect was one of extraordinary pallor.
Now, moving on to chapter thirteen, pages 186 and 187:
He (Jonathan) gazed at a tall, thin man, with a beaky nose and black moustache and pointed beard… His face was not a good face; it was hard, and cruel; and sensual, and his big white teeth, that looked all the whiter because his lips were so red, were pointed like an animal’s.
Jonathan kept looking after him, and said, as if to himself:- ‘I believe it is the Count, but he has grown young. My God, if this be so! Oh, my God! my God! If I only knew! if I only knew!’
Between that and the other horrifying things that have occurred so far in the work, I can definitely see how this book could be a new genre of horror for people reading it.
What’s even more amazing, is that I’m enjoying it much more than I thought I would. I’m reading at a pretty brisk pace, it is by far, about half-way through, one of the fastest reading classics I have read since last summer when I read Dumas’s The Count of Monte Cristo.
I’ve also found the story format to be very appealing as well. Written in the form of diaries from the involved parties, Stoker has been doing a good job of chronologically telling the story from different points of view. I hope to continue to see this close weaving of the timeline as I continue to delve deeper into the novel.
More to come later….