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Dracula in Love by Karen Essex: A Book Review About Mina -Dracula's Love Interest

Updated on January 31, 2018
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Cynthia - a freelance writer and amateur photographer believing in the power of words, the magic of storytelling in poetry, prose or photos.

Vlad III, also known as Vlad the Impaler, the historical character Dracula was based on.
Vlad III, also known as Vlad the Impaler, the historical character Dracula was based on. | Source

A Book Review of Dracula in Love

As I write the book review of Dracula in Love, I am aware that Dracula is the quintessential vampire; the vampire that inspired the creation of all other vampires. Dracula was the first. Bram Stoker attempted to capture his essence in his novel, Dracula. He brought Dracula to the world's attention, shedding light on a being that existed in darkness. Bram Stoker portrayed Dracula as ruthless, remorseless and as a being that was all too happy to destroy anyone as he quenched his blood thirst.

Karen Essex, the author of Dracula in Love, shows us Dracula through the eyes of her intelligent, beautiful and feisty Irish born heroine, Mina, first introduced to us by Bram Stoker in Dracula. Karen Essex continue's Mina's story by revealing Mina's journal entries. In her journal, Mina is shown to be struggling to understand herself and her attraction to the dark villain, Dracula, who is ruthless in his quest to make her his own.

Set in the late 1800's, Dracula in Love explores not only Mina's relationship with Dracula, but it also looks at Mina's relationship with her own nature and her existence in Victorian society, as society fraught with rules and restrictions mostly intended to restrain women both figuratively and literally. When seen through Mina's eyes, Dracula represents the enlightenment that had been lost to women over the centuries. In Karen Essex's story, Dracula offered Mina choices for freedoms and liberties unheard of during the times in which her story is set. Dracula even offers immortality. On the other hand, Jonathan Harker, Mina's fiance and Dracula's not so hapless victim, represents conformity, even double standards and repression, in the guise of safety and respectability.

Deliciously titillating, you will find yourself entranced by this young woman's life in a time and world now long gone and by her journey to self discovery. Karen Essex wove a tale of love, seduction, fascination and Mina's need and attempts to fit into Victorian society. The vivid descriptions, and tantalizing narrative make Dracula in Love a riveting page turner. From the first page, you will find yourself wondering when and how Dracula will make his appearance. You wonder if Mina will succumb to his powers and the seduction of immortality or will she escape unscathed to the safety and normalcy that Jonathan offers. Most of all you will question whether that safety is as it desirable as it seems to be.

As I write this book review, I'm aware that Dracula in Love may not be as appealing to readers as the original Dracula. I may not even be as appealing as some other versions of vampire stories that live and breath the ruthlessness and violence that is inherent in the majority of vampire reads. After all, we are seeing through a woman's eyes which is giving another perspective to the horrors of Dracula.

I can think of no better time than the shortened days of the cold winter months to curl up in front of the fire with a good thriller. Dracula in Love offers suspense and romance in a world that seems real enough to be just outside our door. Watching our heroine's powers and belief in herself unfurl is akin to discovering that you, like our heroine, held the key to who you are all along.

If you like vampire stories mixed with romance and shrouded in mystery and with a little bit of social commentary, then you will will be enthralled by Karen Essex's Dracula in Love. I suggest you get comfortable with a nice warm throw and a cup of hot chocolate or tea and read.

Meet the Author, Karen Essex

© 2011 Cynthia B Turner


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