Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dracula, by Bram Stoker

Took me long enough!

I loved reading this book, as I was doing so mostly to compare notes, so to speak, with those of the author of some other famous vampire books...

This book definitely added a bit more fear and terror to the word "vampire", and sort of diminished the "sexy" glow of my former opinion.  Evil is a good way to describe the main character of this book.  Main? Mostly...

It was written in the form of letters and journal/diary entries, all in chronological order, and each one adding a necessary piece to the vampire puzzle.  At first, a slew of different characters were introduced, but towards the middle and definitely by the end, it became quite clear as to why.

It shed more light on how the world typically sees vampires, and that the legend of such creatures has been around for centuries.  This author did his research at the time, that's for sure.  The tale he wove was most mysterious and fascinating, adding twists and turns to every chapter.  How one could come up with such a story is a mystery in itself to me... what is going through their head that one day they think, hm... I'm going to write such a story as will form nightmares in the minds of many for generations to come! Genius.  That's all it is.

Now I want to see the movie, to see if anyone out there has done this book justice.  For if they have, I'll be sleeping with the light on that night, I'm sure.  ;)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Castle Dracula: Romania's Vampire Home, by Barbara Knox

Ever since I read Twilight, my husband's been, erm, harassing me to read a "real" vampire story.  So, I'm currently reading Dracula, by Bram Stoker.  One of our family's goals for the year is to learn something new every month.  This month we chose "places around the world".  We all decided to pick somewhere individually and then at the end of the month, share what we've learned with each other.

I picked Transylvania, since I'm sort of in the middle of it at the moment.  I have to admit - and this may be due to my hair color, that or shear ignorance - I didn't know it was a real place.  I totally thought it was fictitious! Nope.  It's real.  ;)

Although, my library is lacking on information about it... I'm thinking of looking up Romania, to see if that helps.  Anyway, I did find this book, which is a children's book, but that didn't stop me.

I learned that Dracula means "son of the dragon", since Dracul means "dragon".  Dracula was based on a real person, Vlad the Impaler... and his dad was known as Dracul, so Vlad became, well, Dracula.  He was a cruel prince who used to impale his enemies.  He'd invite the poor over for dinner, then lock them in and burn the place to the ground.  Nice, right? And the castle he lived in, now also known as Castle Dracula, was Castle Bran and really exists.  This is what Bram based his character and castle on, I read. 

Nice, huh? Apparently, one can visit this castle and roam freely about.  How awesome would that be?

Anyway, I also learned that, according to legend, vampires can take many forms, not just bats. 

It was a quick read, of course (like 10 minutes? maybe less?), but it was interesting.

Dracula's quite interesting, but I don't have much reading time these days so I'm slowly working my way through it...

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Deja Dead, by Kathy Reichs

I took to long getting it started (blame Christmas, that's what I'm doing) and now it's due back, so I didn't get to read it.  Lame.