We decided on this as a read in my little book club that I have with some of my friends and I have to admit it – I am ashamed to say that I couldn’t actually read this book. I know the story (and have never liked any of the films btw), and I have always thought it to be a good story, and about 18 years ago, I listened to the audio book and really enjoyed it.
I have cheated again. I bought a cheap paperback, and was determined to read it, but in over a week, I managed to get no further than page 7, no matter how hard I tried.
Unfortunately just the first sentence bored me to tears, and then it went downhill from there – I found myself thinking about it half the time “Oh god no,I’ve still got to read Dracula!”
For anyone who hasn’t read it, the book is written in the form of journals, letters and memos written by the various characters from the book. I think one of the problems for me was that the first entry is written so that it feels like you’ve entered part way through the story.
Just for reference, the first line is: “3 May. Bistritz—Left Munich at 8.35 P.M. on 1st May, arriving at Vienna early next morning; should have arrived at 6.46, but train was an hour late.” The first night that I picked it up, I read that, thought “Jesus!” and put it down, turned out the light and went to sleep, LOL
In the end I picked up my old audio book, and listened to it again – and thoroughly enjoyed it. obviously the CDs only go on for 2.5 hours, so it is a heavily abridged version, but it was brilliant – I love the story. My audio book is read by Anthony Valentine (whoever he is) and I think he reads it really well (apart from the dodgy French-sounding accent he gives Van Helsing the Dutch man! The whole climax of the story, with the mad horse, gypsy, wolf, carriage, coffin chase was fantastic, and he did a brilliant job of conveying the excitement.
I am still unable to explain why I can’t read the book – it’s not the old-fashioned writing, as I like many books of the same era and older. Maybe someone else can give me a reason if they have ever felt the same way!