Pasty white skin, sharp fangs, and grows young by drinking others’ blood. That’s right, vampires. One of the most well-known vampire books is Dracula by Bram Stoker. It tells the story of a group of people that are plagued by the vampire Dracula, and their story to hunt him down and kill him once and for all. There are many elements to this story, including the plot, characters, and quotes. Also, you will be able to see my assessment of the story. So, let’s dive into the plot, characters, quotes, and opinions.
The plot is key to any story, even Dracula. But in Dracula, we see the plot being told a different way. The book is just composed of diary entries, it’s like you’re reading something your not supposed to be reading. We start off in the 19th century in Jonathan Harker’s diary. He is traveling to Transylvania to help Count Dracula buy some land, as this is his job. But Johnathan starts to notice weird things about the Count he sleeps in a coffin and has three women that he calls the Brides of Dracula living in his castle! The Brides are weird too, they have pointy teeth and feast on a child Dracula brings them every night. Jonathan fears for his life and tries to run away. We are left on a cliffhanger with Jonathan, but we are then introduced to Mina, Jonathan’s fiancee. We are thrown into the life of Miss Mina as she is hanging out with her best friend Lucy. Lucy seems absorbed in her own problems, as we see that she has three marriage proposals in one day! The three options are John Steward, a doctor in a mental hospital, Quincey Morris, and Arthur Holmwood. AND….. THE LUCKY WINNER WAS… ARTHUR HOLMWOOD!!!! Seriously though, all the boys stay good friends later on. We read in the diary of John Steward, as he is recording a patient of his, Mr. Renfield. Renfield has an odd habit of capturing flies, feeding them spiders, feeding them to birds, and then eating the birds. He says that his “”master”” will be coming soon. While all this is going on, Lucy is not doing well. She extremely weak, pale, and seems to be losing blood, but they can’t find the spot where she’s losing it. Doctor Steward is confused by this, so he asks for advice from Doctor Van Helsing. Doctor Helsing sees that a vampire is involved, and he tries to save her. They are not able to save her, and she dies. But as we and Doctor Helsing know, she isn’t really dead. After seeing Lucy almost kill a child, Doctor Helsing and the three friends help him kill Lucy, they stab her in the heart and cut off her head. Mina hears from Johnathon who is suffering brain fever, AKA madness after his deal with Dracula. She goes to her fiancee at once and marries him. After a while, the couple comes back and they along with the three friends and Doctor Helsing swear to kill Dracula once and for all. While they go out hunting for Dracula, Mina stays behind in Doctor Seward’s office to stay safe. This wasn’t the safest idea, as that Seward’s patient Reinfield invites his master, Dracula, into the building and he starts drinking Mina’s blood and forcing her to drink his. Quickly they try to find Dracula and kill him, he leads them to his hometown of Transylvania, and they have a final battle, where Quincy is stabbed and dies, along with Dracula.
Characters are also very significant to the story. Two of my favorite characters that I will be examining are Doctor Van Helsing and Mr. John Steward. Doctor Van Helsing is a very smart man. He taught Doctor Steward and have a lot more degrees than what you would think. He also knows a lot about vampires. He is the one who had the idea to put garlic everywhere in Lucy’s room, to cut off her head and drive a stake through her heart, and he seemed to be the only character that knew what we knew. As this book has been out for a long time, we know about vampires. They’re everywhere and not just at Halloween. A vampire teaches the kids their numbers and how to count. We know that vampires can’t go out into the daylight, don’t eat, can’t see their own reflection, and garlic repels them. Doctor Van Helsing is the only one who knows what we know about vampires. When we see that Lucy is losing blood and there seems to be no cut or exit wound, we know to check on her neck, so does Doctor Van Helsing. On page 239 we see him helping out his friends. “”He pointed, and far down the avenue of years, we saw a white figure advance-a dim white figure, which held something dark at its breast. The figure stopped and at a moment a ray of moonlight fell between the masses of the driving clouds and showed in startling prominence a dark-haired woman, dressed in the cerements of the grave. We could not see the face, for it was bent down over what we saw to be a fair-haired child. There was a pause and a sharp little cry, such as a child gives in sleep, or a dog as it lies before the fire and dreams. We were starting forward, but the professor’s warning hand, seen by us as he stood behind a yew-tree, kept us back.”” We see that he is protecting his friends from the vampire Lucy as she is holding a child that she will kill. He knows that if they attack her while she is awake, she will kill them. Then later, he asks Authur to kill the vampire. You would think that the professor would be happy to do this, but he wants Authur to be the one who sets her free. My other favorite character is Mr. John Steward. He is a kind doctor who works at a mental hospital. Back in those times, I think that not a lot of people would be nice to mentally unstable characters. But Dr. Steward is the exception. He has a man named Renfield in his care, and he makes sure that someone watches this patient all the time. Even after Renfield attacks the doctor and cuts him, Doctor Steward still treats him like a human. When Renfield asks for a kitten, the doctor writes this in his journal on page 85, “”…so I said I should see about it, and asked him if he would not rather have a cat than a kitten. His eagerness betrayed him as he answered: ‘Oh yes, I would like a cat! I only asked for a kitten lest you should refuse me a cat. No one would refuse me a kitten would they?’ I shook my head and said that at present I feated it would not be possible, but that I should see about it.”” We see that Doctor Steward knows that if he gives Renfield a cat, he will kill it eventually. But he doesn’t scold Renfield, he politely says that he thinks it is not possible right now. My two favorite characters are Doctor Van Helsing, because of his knowledge matches ours, and Doctor Steward because he treats his patients with kindness.
One thing that will leave a lasting impression on the audience are quotes from a book. In my opinion, there are two outstanding quotes in this story. The first is on page 182, “”I am too miserable, too low-spirited, too sick fo the world and all in it, including life itself, that I could not care if I heard this moment the flapping of the wings of the angel of death. And he has been flapping those grim wings to show some purpose of late…”” This was written by Doctor Seward as he explains how three people everyone loved, Lucy’s mother, Arthur’s father, and Lucy, have died. He seems to think that there is nothing to live for in this world. I love how it describes death, with flapping grim, black wings as he sneaks up behind someone, yet they can hear him, and he takes them away. Everyone feels this kind of sadness usually one time in their life, and Bram Stoker explains it perfectly. You don’t want to kill yourself but if death came now, you wouldn’t give a fight. The other quote that I love is when Johnathan Harker is ending his diary on page 202. He ends it on such a sad and impressionable note that it stuck with me, “”So I can finish this diary; and God only knows if I shall ever begin another. If I do, or if I ever open this again, it will be to death with different people and different themes; for here at the end, where the romance of my life is told, ere I go back to take up the thread of my life-work, I say sadly and without hope, FINIS.”” If the book had ended this way, it would be a cliffhanger and at the same time, a happy ending. I love how it says that if he ever opens up another diary it will be at another time, with other people. That is just like life. I hope to say FINIS at the end of my life. Both of these quotes explain something with death and make it beautiful. That is why they are my favorite quotes.
Everyone’s opinion matters and everyone has a different opinion. Some people like this book, some people don’t. But in my case, I would recommend Dracula. It is a novel bursting with action, romance, plot twists, and mythical creatures. You won’t understand why someone likes it if you don’t understand the book in the first place. But if you are lucky enough to read and understand Dracula, I think you will be very impressed.
There are key points that every book must have like plot, characters, quotes and how people see the book/recommend it. Dracula is bursting at the seams with so many different aspects, including romance, action, mythical creatures, deep characters, and even deep quotes. What other books have you read that are so deep and first of the kind like Dracula by Bram Stoker?