Thursday, August 20, 2009

Dracula and Evil Tea

I finished Dracula last night. Overall, it is a classic and deserves to be so, but I did find that the first half of the book was much more charming than the second half. The quaint Victorian way of putting things, the hesitant, repetitive approach to making a point began to wear on me over time. Long sections of Van Helsing's imperfect syntax more and more became impenetrable snarls, almost puzzles at times, and detracted from the story.

Dracula must also lose points for pacing. The slow pace that seemed so appropriate to the first half or more of the book became a frustration in the second half or thereabouts. The second half needed to be more dynamic, faster paced. It should have been more of a race to the final confrontation. But it wasn't. For all that the characters talked and talked, near endlessly really, about how time was so vital they never actually seemed in a hurry.

My final verdict is; read it, or at least read the first half or so or until it bogs down for you and becomes work and not pleasure for you. I wish I had skimmed the second half or gotten the Cliff Notes or something. It is a charming, wonderful book but not without its flaws. On a positive note, it does show us a vampire who is, as vampires should be, truly other, an enemy of mankind, a predator and a threat. In the end, I am glad I read it and would even like to read it, at least the first half of it, again sometime.

Today I am enjoying an excellent breakfast (or possibly dessert) tea: "Dr. Horrible's Tea of Evil;"

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