A buddy of mine and myself talk about books quite a bit, and though we have different literary interests we both agree, with great vehemence, that theA buddy of mine and myself talk about books quite a bit, and though we have different literary interests we both agree, with great vehemence, that the classics suck. So I for the life of me have no idea why I started reading the ultimate classic horror novel. I loathe the classics, I truly do, and it is my opinion that they ruin the enjoyment of reading. So many kids are forced to read such boring books that I don't think it comes as a shock that so few of us adults are fanatic readers. I for one hated the books assigned in high school English, and I really loathed them more so in college. I had no desire to read old novels with outdated plots and themes, filled with phrases and jokes and vocabulary of an era long ago. I read them dutifully and promptly discarded them. I just never understood wasting my time and energy on such droll literature, especially not when there were hundreds of other books that I actually wanted to read.
So, did I want to read Dracula? Honestly, I picked this edition up at library book sale because I figured that someday I'd have the propensity to familiarize myself with classic literature, despite my general animosity towards it. I guess I read it out of a need to gloat with literate narcism, whilst maintaining the self-identifying sub-cultural proclivity. In other words, I basically wanted to announce that I was well versed in all things nerdy, dark, macabre, brutal, and trve kvlt!
But all in all Bram Stroker's "Dracula" is just another dreary, boring classic.
First off, I was unaware the novel's narrative consisted of multiple journal entries and letters and correspondence between many of its characters; most notably the characters Nina, Dr. Seward, and Jonathan Harker. In a way I found that to be a very interesting approach to writing a novel, and I think Bram Stoker executed it in a magnificently progressive fashion. Bram Stoker did a very good job utilizing voices and speech patterns between the characters to help the reader identify from whom's point-of-view they were reading. And yet, on the other hand, it became irksome as a lot of the scenes were completely centered around dialogue and exposition, with little to no action; although, I wouldn't say the descriptions of setting and mood were lacking. I'm not an expert in the period or anything, but I wonder if this multi-narrative approach was seen as progressive for its time, and if that helped enhance the novel's popularity decades later, especially during the modernist movement (for I do believe Dracula was a considerable flop and failed to find its audience until many, many years later).
Secondly, the novel should've been aptly named: "What's Wrong With Lucy?" . . . like, for real. Or perhaps: "Psht -- There Ain't No Dracula In This Damn Novel!" . . . like, for fucking real. Out of the 400+ pages I do believe Dracula himself only graces 50 or so of them. That was the biggest disappointment I had reading this novel. I was completely dumbfounded, annoyed and literally exhausted of the entire Lucy-saga that took up the better half of this novel. I can reiterate 200+ pages in 1 long, run-on sentence: Lucy is sick, Dr. Van Helsing shall give her a blood transfusion with Arthur's blood; oh, Lucy is still sick, Dr. Van Helsing shall give her another blood transfusion, but now with Dr. Seward's blood; oh, aghast, Lucy is still sick, Dr. Van Helsing shall give her yet another blood transfusion, but this time with Quincey's blood; dammit, Lucy is still sick, Dr. Van Helsing shall give her one last blood transfusion, but this time with his own blood; well, fuck, Lucy's dead . . . or wait, Lucy is not dead, but rather she is the UNDEAD!
Last but not least (and this is at no fault of Bram Stoker) but the standard Hollywood portrayal of Dracula as a pale, dark haired, dark lipped, gothic cliche, greatly contrasts that of Bram Stoker's vision of Count Dracula. Bram Stoker portrays Dracula as more akin to Count Olaf from the Lemony Snicket series. No joke. Bram Stoker describes Dracula as a tall, thin man, with bushy, white eye brows, and a long, pointy nose, and pointy chin, and yeah . . .
In the end, I didn't find Dracula horrible. There were a lot of interesting characters and scenarios, the setting and mood were conveyed really well, and the multi-narrative approach was interesting. Nevertheless, the monotonous pacing of Lucy's ordeal, the lack of Dracula as a main character, the constant dialogue and exposition . . . all of this made Dracula suck . . . pun intended!
Bad Read; Boring Classic; Trve Kvlt!
P.S. According to the ISBN this was the very edition I read, which was absolutely appalling to read. There were so many typos. Every other page had a misspelled word or punctuation error or just words accidentally written as one word (likethis). So, that was annoying . . .
I think this novel is the perfect example of style-over-substance. When someone writes in a language that tickles your brain it's easy to oRating: 3.5
I think this novel is the perfect example of style-over-substance. When someone writes in a language that tickles your brain it's easy to overlook any faults or lacking development in characters or plot. Not that were a lot of problems with the story or anything, in fact, probably quite the opposite; though, it wasn't perfect either.
In the end, the overall story just felt empty; or, actually, I'd say the overall story just sort of rode a straight line along it's own narrative and didn't stray into any subplots nor sprinkle a dash of any other genre. What I mean by that is: even within the most drama-style pieces, there's a comical jab here and there, or maybe an element of tension; The Snow Child, on the other hand, was just a drama about a couple living in the wilderness of Alaska who happened upon a mysterious girl seemingly made of winter itself. And there's a tone to that narrative, which perfectly accompanied the story, but never did it falter or seemingly take a step into a new direction. What is presented on the first page is exactly what it is presented on the last page.
Overall, everything was crafted perfectly. The characters were fleshed out, the setting felt right and accurate, the scenes were well-paced and flowed seamlessly into one another, the language was beautifully articulate, the tone was perfect, and the story was okay. But I feel that the latter of those qualities was the weakest.
Good book; great read . . . definitely style-over-substance. ...more
Thank god, I'm finally done reading that f___ing book.
Okay, that was a bit of a harsh statement, but seriously . . . I knew better than to purchase aThank god, I'm finally done reading that f___ing book.
Okay, that was a bit of a harsh statement, but seriously . . . I knew better than to purchase a piece of fan-fiction; but I just couldn't help myself, I'm a fanatic of the film "The Dark Crystal" by Jim Henson. And like most fanatics I too have been yearning for a continuation of the original story. There was a rather interesting period several years back where fans had their hopes up that there would be some sort of reprisal of "The Dark Crystal" storyline -- it was all in the span of a couple of months when a brief rumor that a film sequel was in the works (there was even a photo published in film magazines, featuring a gelfling animatronic), and there was the publication of Brian Froud's artwork related to the original film, and there was even a tease of a story that filled a couple of crappy pages tucked at the flip-side of the first issue for the manga "Labyrinth", and I do believe there was even a few graphic novels -- but all in all there hasn't been any hope of an emergence of a gelfling saga. And after reading J.M. Lee's "Shadows of the Dark Crystal", I'd say there still isn't any hope.
I shan't divulge too much, but in short some of the concepts and characters introduced just didn't sit well with me. It totally missed the tone and overall mythos of "The Dark Crystal". And I fear the next time I watch the movie I'll just keep imagining gelflings with gills. Plus, the narration was simplistic and the scenes really needed to be expanded. All in all, I'd summarize the plot as: things happen to a gelfling girl with gills going on an adventure.