Posts Tagged With: Dracula

book review | Dracula’s Child by J.S. Barnes

Draculas Child book cover j s barnes book reviewAuthor: J.S. Barnes
Title: Dracula’s Child
Series: –
Genre: Dracula; Vampires
Pages: 576
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

I’m really craving some Dracula content these days. So when “Dracula’s Child” by J.S. Barned got into my feed, I had to read it. And I did. And it was okay.

About the Book: Upon chasing Dracula down and killing him, Mina and Jonathan Harker thought they rid their lives of the evil and can now begin the process of healing. Live their life, raise their son. But upon his death, Dracula swore revenge that’ll reach them across eons… And it seems the darkness is pooling up again.

My Opinion: The book is pretty well written, easy to read, entertaining. But at the same time it’s filled with characters and scene that add nothing, and yet are constantly there just to be there. You either end up forgetting their existence as soon as the scene is over, or try to connect them to anything at all for the rest of the story. But generally, I liked the idea, the way propaganda spreading is portrayed here, and whom it could possibly benefit. 

It’s not a bad book, there’s simply too many mediocre things to make it a good one. A firm 3 out of 5, mostly for the good writing itself.

Draculas Child book cover j s barnes book review night mode reading

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Categories: 3-5, Alternative History Books, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, Nosferatu Books, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

dracula | Dracula Untold (2014)

dracula untold beginingTitle: Dracula Untold
Dracula: Luke Evans
Year: 2014
Duration: 92 min
Rate: 4/5 | IMDB

Let me tell you of my old love. Not one as old as Bela Lugosi, but not as recent as Claes Bang either. I’ve watched “Dracula Untold” in cinema at least three times, such were the good old days when you could do that. And while this isn’t the best Dracula film you’ll ever see, I still enjoyed the piece of historical fantasy, as lacking in accuracy as it was.

About the Movie: Story begins with a discovery or two that lead daddy… I mean, lord Dracula to a dark cave covered with broken bone fragments. Not a moment later, he’s on his back, sword poised between his legs, with a ray of sunshine so precise it makes the beast within the darkness retreat. This way we’re told that even a seasoned warrior as Vlad Dracula here had no chance of survival.

“I’ll do what princes do best – negotiate.”

But troubles do not end, oh no. Missing turks are still missing turks. And so the turks that aren’t missing assume they were disposed of by the land ruler on which they disappeared. Meaning, they blame Dracula for it. It’s hard to tell whether Sultan Mehmed then demanded tribute of boys to make them into his own soldiers, and not just silver, due to perceived offence, or was he planning to do so either way. But that’s the choice prince Vlad is presented with. Give up the children, a thousand boys, or bring war to your people. It seems like no choice at all… Sadly, even he knows there’s only one way he could possibly dream of defending his lands.

“Men do not fear sword, they fear monsters.”

My Opinion: Sword fights were more impressive at the beginning, which is strange, for you’d think Vlad and Mehmed together would make a dance to behold. But as story progresses, it gets more interesting in a fantasy-movie kind of sense. Vlad has three days to resist the curse and then the trial version would end with no annoying reminders to subscribe for a full version. And while the drive for blood is strong, the needs to save his people, his wife, his son, are even stronger. With a little hint to a nonexistent sequel at the end. Beautiful touch.

Verdict: 4/5

Categories: 4-5, Dracula: General, Films: Dracula, movies | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | The Origin of Dracula by Irving Belateche

the origin of dracula irving belateche book reviewAuthor: Irving Belateche
Title: The Origin of Dracula
Series: –
Genre: Horror Literature; Paranormal
Pages: 367
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

The Origin of Dracula” by Irving Belateche might just be the most boring Dracula-origin mystery I’ve ever read.

About the Book: John and his friends managed to get their parents to let them go camping alone in the woods. They didn’t expect that night to become a living nightmare waiting for dawn to break. Nor did they expect it to return decades later, for the old evil they disturbed lives for his psychotic games with deadly ultimatums…

My Opinion: At no point did it get better. The mystery is poor, the game is boring, the characters are so-so. You know that recipe of old horror movies and books: group goes camping, someone dies, then the dead come back to mess with them? Well, this is that but bad.

No. 2 out of 5 is the best I can do.

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Categories: 2-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Fantasy, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, dark fantasy, demons, Detective Books, Mystery Books, Nosferatu Books, urban fantasy, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

dracula review | Dracula 2000

Yesterday I got a serious craving for some good old Dracula 2000 with Gerard Butler as Dracula. I forgot how pleasant this movie is, full of heist-gone-wrong kind of action and vampires.

dracula 2000 gerard butler filmo apzvalga movie review drakula

Movie begins with my favorite Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” scene: Demeter, with no living soul aboard, reaches the shores. Story continues in contemporary America where, by watching no other but Van Helsing, and a crew of greedy robbers breaking into his vault, we slowly realize the horrible truth: back then the novel heroes didn’t manage to kill Dracula. They were only barely able to contain him. And these fools, bleeding onto a silver, cross studded coffin, are about to release him. Just in time for Mardi Gras too…

My Opinion: I really like this movie visually. That 2000’s alt vibe, variety of good and not so good fangs. And Gerard Butler, portraying probably the hottest version of Dracula I’ve ever seen.

Script has a handful of gems, a few fantastic lines, and some jokes I found myself remembering even after I forgot what movie they were from. The story is presented with a little gust of fresh air too. Don’t know who was the first to utter “Judas Iscariot” after they read Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, but the idea was well executed by playing into vampire fears. For instance, an atheist doesn’t care for the bible (have you read “I Am Legend”?). But Vampire Daddy cannot stand it, nor silver (for which he sold Jesus), crosses, etc.

Good movie, definitely worth the hour or two.
5/5

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Categories: Dracula: General, Films: Dracula, movies | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Dracula, Prince of Many Faces by Radu Florescu and Raymond T. McNally

dracula prince of many faces his times and his life radu florescu raymond mcnallyAuthor: Radu Florescu, Raymond T. McNally
Title: Dracula, Prince of Many Faces: His Life and His Time
Series: –
Genre: History; Dracula
Pages: 261
Rate: 5/5 | Goodreads

I’m on a quest for more nonfiction on Dracula. And have been recommended “Dracula, Prince of Many Faces” by Radu Florescu and Raymond T. McNally. I’d say not a bad start for my quest.

About the Book: A very in-depth study of Dracula, the historical figure, the warlord who fought against all odds, relentlessly. His family, the Draculestti name, relations. How he came to be what he was, and how that lead to the actions he took. What his life was like, his death, how he entered literature, became legend and, at last, was made into a vampire by Bram Stoker.

My Opinion: I admit, I’m too lazy to dig deeper into some questionable aspects in this book. But in general, this was a very detailed account of every question you could ever have on Dracula. At times even too broad, for I remember I was getting pissed for having to read about Medici or some other family of that kind out there. But there were plenty of details I knew nothing about, and so it made me happy to learn of it.

If you’re new in your voyage with Dracula, maybe don’t start with this book. Enjoy the fiction and historical stuff, watch some documentaries. Then take it. A 5 out of 5 from me.

dracula prince of many faces his times and his life radu florescu raymond mcnally vlad the impaler

Categories: 5-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: NonFiction, Historical Books | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

dracula review | Dracula | 2020 BBC One

Due to being made by Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat, the two people who made BBC Sherlock happen, this particular piece of Dracula was highly anticipated for me, if not the most.

To start with, let me just say the choice of actors is absolutely superb. Each one does the job so well I can’t even begin telling you. But most of all, Claes Bang, Count Dracula, my Prince of the Darkness, outshines them all, portraying a hot beast of a man to perfection. The way he moved, carried himself, his face, his tone, I couldn’t have dreamed of a better actor for this role.

dracula 2020 bbc one moffat gatissSince the episodes come in the three movie long parts, I’ll try to make a short review for each one. A review and opinion, as I do with the books:

1. “The Rules of the Beast”:
Jonathan Harker is summoned to Transylvania where he’s to help Count Dracula with some legal work, papers, property purchases. But Count has more plans for the man, and soon Harker finds himself losing his mind in the wicked castle full of screams and not a living soul in sight.

Parallel to this story, we witness Harker tell it to a nun in a monastery, where they took care of him. She seems to not only believe his impossible tale, but further pushes him to tell even more: what has happened to Jonathan Harker to leave a husk out of a young man? And how has such a prized Bride of the Devil himself – escape? On top of that, if he did escape or even was let go – why was it done so, why was it allowed? Where is the Devil? Where is Dracula?…

My Opinion: A breath of fresh air. Dracula wants to understand what he is and how he is what he is, so he experiments with people. In his own words, he’s trying to reproduce, aka create a vampire. And Harker fits the bill to try it on. Thus he’s being referred to as one of Dracula’s Brides. And since vampirism seems to be transmitted through blood, a question, for the first time out loud, is given: what relation, what conduct must it be for one to get this disease of the blood in them?

As Harker grows clearly sicker, Count Dracula is getting younger. But the manipulation provided is not necessarily supernatural. There’s power in the former warlord, power of someone used to lead armies into battles, command people. And Harker finds himself submitting to this overpowering will. To a point where his mind cracks and he’s left a raving lunatic.

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2. “Blood Vessel”:
Count Dracula boards the infamous Demeter in hopes to reach the shores of England. Curated, lured in, tricked passengers will serve as his menu of clever, wise, rich, and just outright interesting meals. All while he tells this story to sister Agatha Van Helsing at a game of chess, spinning a wicked tale of deception and murder in plain sight. Up until she figures out his game and the two powerful minds clash before the eyes of what’s left in Demeter.

My Opinion: I always enjoyed the tale of Demeter and how Dracula managed to put it on safe ground without a living soul on board. This is a superb take on it, a tale worthy of Sherlock and Agatha Christie. Dracula shows us not only how vampire functions, but how he evolves too, what blood does to him, his mind, the rules that bind him. This episode might just be my favorite one

PicsArt_08-04-04.14.11

3. “The Dark Compass”:
Count Dracula is quickly learning the rules of new life in this new age. From wi-fi to lawyers to parties to consent. New age offers new kind of people too. All kinds of nonbelievers, radicals, strangers, egocentrics, people consumed with having fun and getting validated. People consumed with living life to its fullest. Finally, it seems, he has another proper shot at getting a perfect bride. A modern one, one who wouldn’t be afraid of living forever.

“I knew future would bring wonders. I did not know it would make them ordinary.”

My Opinion: Dracula seems to have had a change of heart here. Not only does he not deploy all those wonders he so much admired to learn more of what he is, what vampires are, how undeath works, he himself seems to soon be consumed by the highlights of life. Sister Agatha travels time through blood, so to speak, just to play one last match with Count Dracula and it seems, at last, she knows where the chink in the armor of an ancient warlord is.

This might just be the best and the worst episode at the same time. While every other piece sort of gave you classical tale with a new take on it, this one gave you… Less. It seems that most if not all creators who take up Dracula for a remake forget their first step in the vampirism: the extreme will to live. And twist it into an extreme fear of death instead. How can a man of Dracula’s caliber reach the modern age, with every book in existence at the finger tips, and decide they’re up to die now? Although, Dracula’s death remains debatable. IMDB has no end date as of yet, and we don’t exactly see him die either. We only learn that all the things he thought were deadly to him – could have been rendered useless as one shed the old skin of superstition. So I do dearly hope this is not the end yet and that Gatiss and Moffat will do right by us.

PicsArt_03-08-12.18.50

I crave to get back to my roots, where I obsessed to you all about all things Dracula. So now and again I’ll provide here a review of something not necessarily bookish, but Dracula related. The less book related Dracula will be reviewed over at [Ego Noctis] blog, and the more book related ones will be posted here. All available under one roof of my Patreon though, if you prefer one place to read it all.

[IG | LT.IG]

Categories: Films: Dracula, series | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

1897 05 26

dracula first published bram stoker

Be merry and sin plenty, Children of the Night

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book review | Something in the Blood by David J. Skal | Dracula lit.

Something In The Blood David J Skal Dracula Bram StokerAuthor: David J. Skal
Title: Something in the Blood
Series: –
Genre: Biography; Nonfiction
Pages: 672
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

My final book on Dracula this year. I followed this resolution of one Dracula book a month fairly loosely, reading books where Dracula was a mere secondary character or, like in “Something in the Blood” by David J. Skal – a product. But all in all this was a strange and fun challenge that got me enjoy one of my most favorite topics. Sadly, this book wasn’t so great of an end to it.

About the Book: David J. Skal attempts to tell us about Bram Stoker’s life, his bed-ridden childhood and an illness of seven years that mysteriously went away. Of his a tad odd family, his work in literature and theater. How vampire Count Dracula came to be, and what he became, evolving through the years, outliving the author himself.

My Opinion: This was supposed to be a biography of Bram Stoker with great interest in Dracula, as title would imply. Instead it was a biography of any and all, sometimes in very great long-winded detail, gothic horror author of Stoker’s times. Sometimes the connection was clear, other times we got to read of a friend’s wife and her life after her husband has died. It’s interesting if you’re curious of how one was supposed to navigate the nuances of literature in Victorian England to not end up in jail. But if you’re just here for Bram, this is too heavy of a book to read.

The book is spread too wide to only have Bram Stoker’s face on the cover. I give it a 3 out of 5 for what was a very heavy and hefty read. If you just want Bram Stoker’s biography, read the authors word at the back of “Dracul” book by Dacre Stoker.

Categories: 3-5, Biographies, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: NonFiction | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Dracula: The Modern Prometheus by Rafael Chandler | Dracula lit.

dracula the modern prometheus rafael chandlerAuthor: Rafael Chandler
Title: Dracula: The Modern Prometheus
Series: –
Genre: Dracula; Retelling
Pages: 266
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

Dracula: The Modern Prometheus” by Rafael Chandler is definitely the strangest retelling of Marry Shelley’s “Frankenstein” and Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” that I have ever read. It’s both good and bad at the same time.

About the Book: Mina Harker had no clue what nightmare her life will become when she ventured out into Transylvanian mountains, to visit her firm’s client, Countess Dracula in her secluded castle. An older, eccentric, scientist greeted her into her home that soon became Mina’s prison. But true dread for her life miss Harker only felt upon finding Dracula’s laboratory where she seemingly tried to raise the dead. Driven by fear Mina not so much escaped as was released, but nightmare didn’t end there. For countess was growing short on scientific material in her homeland, and discovered she could find more in that of Mina’s…

My Opinion: After two gender swaps, one role swap, and a whole load of very dull retelling of too well known tales, we got some good shiny pearls. Dracula’s Monster Eve beautifully evolved before our very eyes, bickering with Dracula like one would: from stages of a child versus motherly figure who wasn’t very motherly, then from a stage of a rebellious teenager. Key difference were the actual fights, for Dracula, as often noted, was indeed a fierce warrior, and stood her ground where mortals fell, killing those virtuous vampire hunters left and right. The whole fight against Dracula, betrayals, crossings and double-crossings were written very well too.

So the biggest flaw in this whole book was the need to base such thick portion of it on a tale we all already heard. If author found a way to do so without stepping into old footprints, the book would’ve been a masterpiece. Which leads me to a conclusion that author has much more to show us, and it might be worth keeping an eye out. This book gets a 3 out of 5, yet I still would consider it one of the better ones out there.

Categories: 3-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, Nosferatu Books, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

book review | Fear the Light by William Massa | Fear 1 | Dracula lit.

fear the light william massa book cover.jpgAuthor: William Massa
Title: Fear the Light
Series: Fear 1
Genre: Dracula, Vampires
Pages: 210
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Other than those few historical classics I got recommended way back when, my attempt to read one Dracula book a month became this game of hit or miss. For instance, I truly did miss greatly with Fear the Light by William Massa.

About the Book: Someone is slaying clan vampires, starting with their master, their Creator, the oldest and most powerful vampire alive, formerly, Dracula. Now his clan cowers trapped in their master’s manor in the middle of the day. It was supposed to be a peaceful paying of respects to their late Father in Darkness and someone’s ascension to power, the clan leader position. Instead an invisible force is picking them off one by one. And everyone got a motive.

My Opinion: A poor imitation of Agatha Christi mysteries, where a group of people gets trapped somewhere, and someone’s killing them all. Shallow characters whose tragic stories did help, but otherwise didn’t make them any more interesting or missed. And that godawful trope one often sees in Dracula books, but usually he’s the one getting that stick of: the best of the best can’t beat you, but here comes a rando with a butter knife and you’re done. The End.

Mmno. 2 out of 5.

Categories: 2-5, Books: Dracula, Books: Horror, Books: Other Fiction, Mystery Books, Nosferatu Books, Thriller Books, vampires | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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