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David

Dracula

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Tell us more about Fennell Books?

 

Fennell books is just a hobby, my real job is as a chemical engineer. Once I finish a book, I review it on my blog. If I don't want to keep it, I sell it on Amazon. I learned early on that if your username sounds like an amateur seller then people don't buy from you. I don't make any money from it (my book outgoings are far more than my income from selling on the books!). I do offer them to my friends for free, but generally speaking they don't have the same reading interests as me, so don't want them.

 

 

I love your interests by the way: Robotics and walking - do you ever combine the two?

 

I have a pack of robot dogs called AIBOs who live with me. You can see photos here: Christmas 2007

 

They are great fun to live with. Their names are Dr Newton, Esme, Gaspode, Magrat, Gytha & Penfold. No prizes for guessing which author supplied inspiration for many of the names! They have artificial intelligence and learn, speak, play and have voice and face recognition.

 

Here is a video of them dancing with their friends at an AIBO party I held back in February:

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I should also add that on my blog, I am trying to read every Agatha Christie in order. I was doing well until I hit Murder On The Links, which is a bit of a dud and I am struggling through it!

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I'm collecting the Poirot books but I can't find a decent copy of Murder on the Links. All the cover designs a very dated.

 

The robots dancing were fab by the way! What a varied and unusual life you do lead.

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I have just finished Dracula and really enjoyed it. I started with the audiobook narrated by Christopher Saul, an excellent narration to my mind. However I reverted to the book on many occasions when I had reading time to speed up the story. But in fact, at times listening was better than reading because of Van Helsing broken English, it was much easier to get the flow and meaning when listening to his dialogue. I found it chilling and engrossing even though aware of the ending.

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i really enjoyed Dracula. (it gave me a wonderful exam mark too lol.)

 

I thought it eery and quite disturbing-particularly the asylum aspect. I thought the men were all absolute drips and were completely to blame for much of it all. I thought the women would have been better off with Dracula.

:D

I did like the opening chapters at the castle, but I also enjoyed the excursion to the graveyard. I loathed the way they killed Dracula, he has a very small part and doesn't seem half as frightening as the men make out.

 

As I came to understand the book, it is less about being scary and more about exploring colonialism and the "new woman". Equally frightening though to a contemporary reader. It deesn't actually follow many of the typical patterns of gothic as say those in Anne radcliffe and other 18c writers. Which were also not about being scared but rather a way to explore issues.

This is just my view, I know some may disagree.

 

The open university course aa316 has a fantastic unit about Dracula. Most enlightening.

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I'd fogotten about the Colonialism angle until I read this; I seem to remember reading a lot about the fear of invasion and that kind of thing, which is represented by the unreason of Vampires. The 'other.'

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In my opinion Dracula is a must! I am a big fan of the aforementioned and anything with blood and gore! Bram Stoker is one of my favourite Authors and I have a first edition of his novel. His book has been adapted many times (as I am sure we have all been subjected to) but I have never been disappointed with the outcome of the performances and special effects.

I think the storyline based around a myth of vampirism with the additional element of horror and suspense always keeps a reader entertained and there are many Authors who still use this idea as a basis for their work today.

Full marks to Mr.Stoker! :)

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I couldn't finish this, I didn't even get to the castle or whatever it was in the middle of the forest. I was so bored by the coach journey and the writing.

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I couldn't finish this, I didn't even get to the castle or whatever it was in the middle of the forest. I was so bored by the coach journey and the writing.
I am getting the feeling that 19th C lit doesn't float your boat?

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I am getting the feeling that 19th C lit doesn't float your boat?

 

Actually not at all, I've read and enjoyed a lot of 19th C lit I just don't feel some of it has stood the test of time nor deserves the hype that still surrounds it. Just my personal opinion. I've not studied literature, I'm just the person who says he doesn't know anything about art but he knows what he likes. :D

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I just don't feel some of it has stood the test of time nor deserves the hype that still surrounds it.
Alas, the same can be said of a lot of books published in the recent past. I think 19th C list suffers as language and tastes have changed.

 

In fact, I said on this very thread, some 4 years ago:

 

Unfortunately this is a book that has suffered due to its success. When published the anti-vampire tools such as garlic, running water, invitation, stake through the heart, cutting off the head, bats etc etc would have been fascinating, exotic and thrilling. Now, having seen these kinds of things played to death, they just seem cliched and detract from the story. I tried hard to remove my modern perceptions and remember when this was written.

 

I found some of Mina's dialogue a little saccharine sweet - but that may just be a sociocultural thing.

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Alas, the same can be said of a lot of books published in the recent past. I think 19th C list suffers as language and tastes have changed.

 

In fact, I said on this very thread, some 4 years ago:

 

Yes as readers we have become used to the quick fire writing that a lot of modern writers use. I appreciate that in the past the populace had less distractions (TV/net/music etc) and they had many hours to fill and therefore the writing style partially fulfilled that function.

 

But some of it remains excellent fiction, though of course which is just mainly personal opinion. I 'love' Thomas Hardy, I like the worlds he creates and the people he populates them with. He writes 'proper' stories. I don't like Jane Austen, I found her books too insular and too similar but both have literary merit. To each their own.

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