The Lost Journal of Bram Stoker is a Book for Halloween
The Journal of Bram Stoker - Creator of Dracula
Everybody knows about the arch vampire Count Dracula but fewer may know that the great classic Gothic novel Dracula was written by Bram Stoker. Recently, in true horror classic style, a long-lost journal written by the Irish novelist has come to light. It was found in the dusty attic of Stoker's great grandson and the book sheds light on the Stoker youth and life in Dublin in the 1870's, laying open some of his most secret thoughts. The Lost Journal of Bram Stoker : The Dublin Years - What better tale for Halloween?
The journal was also the place where Stoker tried out various styles of writing - this was before he wrote Dracula - and it provides fascinating new insight into both the man and the writer.
With great wit and humor we are given an insight into Stoker - the man and his life. He lays bare aspects of his personality in notes that he never expected to be read, let alone published. He jots down anecdotes about his friends at Trinity College, his family and his co-workers in the law firm based at Dublin Castle. He became an able athlete and he recounts his athletic life and his travels at home and abroad.
All this has been edited by Dacre Stoker is the great grand-nephew of Bram Stoker together with Dr Elizabeth Miller and other historians and Dracular experts. They have drawn the information together and have pointed to links between the early notebook and Stoker's mature works.
This is a must-have book for any lover of horror, 19th century writing and the Dracula legend.
Love Gothic novels? This is my list of great classic Gothic horror novels
About Bram Stoker
Abraham Stoker was born on a dark and stormy night (no - just jesting) on 8 November 1847 in Dublin, Ireland, and was one of seven children. After a long and mysterious illness that rendered Stoker bedridden in childhood, he became a clerk in a law firm. Despite his diligence, his heart was far from the tedious work in the courts of Dublin. Stoker had other ambitions and he longed for a connection to the theatre and this lead to a double life, working as a law clerk in a law office and also secretly writing theatrical reviews. Eventually he became the personal assistant of actor Henry Irving and and manager irving's Lyceum Theatre in London.
His fictional writings began in 1872 when he published the The Crystal Cup and then The Chain of Destiny in 1876. Less thrilling as the text book The Duties of Clerks of Petty Sessions in Ireland, published 1879.
Now he is almost exclusively know for his Gothic horror novel, Dracula, published in 1897.
He died on the 20 April 1912.
About the Author, Dacre Stoker
Born in 1958 in Montreal, Dacre Stoker is a descendant of Bram Stokers brother Dr George Stoker. Although he was an athlete and teacher of physical education and sciences he now lectures on Bram Stoker and he is the co-author of the Dracula sequel Dracula the Un-Dead (2009).
See the Interview on Radio 4 with Dacre Stoker below
Read the Classic Dracula, the Sequel and More Forgotten Writings By Bram Stoker
If you're interested in Stoker, vampires, Gothic novels and the undead, you must read the original Dracula for yourself. I loved it and found it most interesting to see where all the stories and films that followed had sprung from.
How interesting to then compare the great-grand nephew's sequel to Dracula, Dracula: The Un-Dead, especially in light of his work on The Lost Journal.
Finally I've chosen yet more writings by Bram Stoker that have long been buried by passing of time - The Forgotten Writings of Bram Stoker. Delve yet further into the psyche of this classic author.
This is Dacre Stoker's sequel to Bram Stoker's Dracula. Twentyfive years after the death of Dracula, Quincey Harker (the son of Jonathan and Mina Harker) sets out on a career on the stage and discovers a production of Dracula, directed and produced by Bram Stoker himself. The characters of the play are characters are found dying gruesomely all over the city of London
This book contains twelve obscure and previously unknown works by Stoker. Delve further into the fictional world conjured up by this Irish lawyer.
You really must read the full version of Dracula and see for yourself what all the fuss is about. I loved this book. Set in Whitby, a busy fishing town on the north east coast of England famous for it's jet as well as Count Dracula, it tells how the vampire had himself shipped to Britain and about his assaults on the young women of the town.
Discover the Birth of Dracula with Dacre Stoker
Dacre Stoker himself visits Dublin, the birthplace of Bram Stoker, and tells us about the life of the creator of Dracula.
An Interview With Dacre Stoker
This interview with Bram Stoker's great-grand nephew, Dacre Stoker took place on Midweek BBC Radio 4 on Wed 18 April 2012.
Dacre tells us about the finding of the journal by one of the great grandsons of Bram Stoker in his Isle of Weight attic and how the journal throws light on Bram Stoker as a man who is concerned about poor, potato famines and the lighting of the streets.
Stoker goes on to recount the difficulties of Bram's child hood which was marred by ill health and the respiratory problems that rendered him bed bound for his first seven years - an illness that Bram Stoker later saw as an opportunity to think.
Bram Stoker had always been interested in the supernatural and he loved tales of Irish folklore about leprachauns and fairies as well as the more horrific and morbid tales of that region. At his mother's knee he heard he stories of the polar epidemic of Sligo where the 'undead' were mistakenly buried too soon and who then dragged themselves out of their own graves. This is creepy stuff. Not surprisingly, Mary Shelly's Frankenstein was one of his favourites.
In the journals we are shown a man wanted to be man of letter, who loved langauage, made puns and jokes (Why is death like a psalm? Answer: kicking the bucket is like a can tickle). It was through his theatrical writings, a damning review of Hamlet, that Bram Stoker first met Henry Irving.
.He had influential friends like the Wildes and the artist James Abbott McNeill Whistler.
When Dacre Stoker was asked about a life growing up under the shadow of Dracular, Dacre admitted that at first it was spooky, but then he later became interested in the real model for 'Dracula' and he's never looked back!