Why Didn’t I read This Sooner: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Okay, I know some of you are probably rolling your eyes and going “really, she hasn’t read Dracula before?” but really, I hadn’t until this past month, when my local book club picked it as our read for July.

I’m not going to rehash the plot, I figure most people know the basics by now but what I do want to talk about is how there is so much more to the story than I realized. I had imagined that it would all be a mystery/suspense that took place in a dreary castle. No. The story takes place in several different areas with many more characters with whom I fell in love.

One thing that I kept thinking about as I was reading was how jealous I was of the people that got to read the book when it came out. Those people that had no preconceived notion of what the plot was about, had no idea that vampires was going to be central to the story, etc. Have you ever thought that about a classic novel that you’ve read? It’s so hard to have not heard the plot of a classic or heard enough about it over the years to have most of the suspense taken out of it. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t spoil classics for others but I’m just saying to sit back and think about how people would have received the novel and experienced it for the first time.

I was also totally enthralled by the psychology and medical aspects in the novel. My pick of favorite character would probably be torn between Van Helsing and Renfield. I think these two characters should have entire novels on their own. Anyone know of any that have been written?

So a bit of a rambling post with mostly just my own feelings and reactions. Take from it this: it’s never to late to pick up a classic novel that you’ve been wanting to read, it may not be exactly what you think it to be.

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