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Dracula in Love


Dracula in Love Cover

ISBN13: 9780767931229
ISBN10: 076793122x
Condition: Standard
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Reading Group Guide

1. In the prologue, Mina Murray writes, “The truth is we must fear monsters less and be warier of our own kind.”  What “monsters” evoke fear in the book?  Which humans evoke fear? 

2. How does feminism play into Mina’s choices? Miss Hadley’s? Lucy’s? Kate’s?  How are these women similar?  Which of the women do you ultimately consider more liberated?

3. How does Mina evolve throughout the story?  What changes her? Where does she get her true power?  Do you agree with her choices?

4. In some ways, the book is an exploration of free will versus fate. Are there any victims in the story, and why are they victims? To what or whom are they victims?  Do you believe what Dracula says, that a person cannot be made to do something s/he has not chosen on some level?

5. Did Dracula in Love deepen your understanding of the roots of vampirism?

6. Discuss the different elements of vampire folklore in the book (i.e. The Lamia, the story of Lilith, the Sidhe, the ghost tales of Whitby) and the ways in which they have contributed to modern day vampire myths.

7. Victorian ideology and customs are strongly painted in the book. In what ways, does Mina accept them and give in to them? In what ways, does she reject them?

8. How do the vampires differ from vampires in other vampire books, films, and television shows, whether classic or contemporary?

9. Discuss sexuality as it pertains to different characters in the book. (Mina and Jonathan. Mina and the Count. Lucy and Arthur. Lucy and Morris. Mina and John Seward. Jonathan and the Lamia.) 

10. What symptoms and behaviors deemed a patient “insane” in Lindenwood?  How does the characterization of the insane relate to Victorian ideology?

11. In what ways does Dracula in Love reflect the Victorian obsession with Darwin’s theory of evolution and other scientific and medical advancements of the time? What 20th century events does it foreshadow?

12. What are the most poignant ways in which Dracula in Love differs from Bram Stoker’s Dracula?  Do you find one account more credible than the other? 

(For a complete list of available reading group guides, and to sign up for the Reading Group Center enewsletter, visit

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Baochi, August 18, 2011 (view all comments by Baochi)
I have been a longtime fan of Karen Essex and have read all of her books. I admit I was a bit skeptical at first with Dracula in Love because a) it's a slight departure from Essex's historical fiction approach and b) I'm not a huge fan of "re-makes," i.e., taking a classic novel and re-imagining it from a different perspective. But Essex blew me away with Dracula in Love -- this novel is unique in its own right, imaginative, and utterly engrossing.

I should have known better than to doubt, if even slightly, an author I have followed for the last ten years.
Dracula in Love pivots off of Bram Stoker's Dracula, only it tells the story from Mina Harker's perspective. May I venture to say that Essex does a better job than Stoker at fleshing out the Victorian setting, Mina's ambivalent feelings towards fiance Jonathan and the Count, and how the past and future figure into the present love triangle? Okay, I guess I just said that very thing. ;)

I love it when a favorite author continues to write exciting, high quality work. Essex is like a reliable friend who never disappoints and always opens my mind to new worlds. I recommend all of her novels and am wondering if indeed Dracula in Love is my favorite...hard to say considering all her novels are so dang good!
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Product Details

Essex, Karen
Anchor Books
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
7.9 x 5.15 x 0.8 in 0.625 lb

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Horror » General
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Romance » Historical
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine
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History and Social Science » Politics » General

Dracula in Love Used Trade Paper
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$10.50 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Anchor Books - English 9780767931229 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Dark, gothic, and utterly sensual, Dracula in Love is the novel for Twilight's grownup fans. The character of Mina Murray leaps from the pages in an extraordinary confession of what truly happened between her and Count Dracula. In this novel of forbidden desires and secrecy, purity is an overrated virtue."
"Review" by , "The King of the Undead in all his manifestations confronts Victorian society, reclaiming his throne as the ultimate vampire, before whom all other paltry vampires in literature wither away. Dracula in Love is a sensual fantasy feast, a flight of the imagination, a darkly rich pleasure. Like The French Lieutenant's Woman, the novel explores and exposes the stifling confines of Victorian society, especially upon women. But the means of deliverance is altogether different."
"Review" by , "Karen Essex turns the legendary tale of immortal love into a seductive, blood-tingling celebration of the senses; Mina Harker is a heroine for the ages — bold, intrepid, and in love with one of the most dangerous, irresistible men in history. If you read only one more vampire novel, let it be this one."
"Review" by , "Beautifully written, this novel by the author of Leonardo's Swans features vivid images of drama, danger, and romance...Romance and vampire fiction buffs will snap this one up."
"Review" by , "You should run to this fresh perspective on Bram Stoker's classic novel...[Dracula in Love] is a haunting, feminist portrayal of eternal love, forbidden desires, and Victorian virtues...a refreshing take on a classic that is sure to mesmerize readers."
"Review" by , "Required reading....Essex retells Bram Stoker's Dracula legend, but this time the story comes entirely from heroine Mina Harker's point of view...meeting the ubervampire himself face to face, not to mention fang to neck."
"Review" by , "An intensely erotic story of romance and obsession....Lusciously sexy and outrageously chilling by turns."
"Review" by , "In Essex's hands, Mina becomes a woman with unusual gifts and powers, and she must learn to use them."
"Synopsis" by , London, 1890. Mina Murray Harker, the rosy-cheeked, quintessentially pure Victorian heroine, becomes Count Dracula's object of desire. To preserve her chastity, five male "defenders" rush in to rescue her from the vampire's evil clutches. This is the story we have been told. But now, from Mina's own pen, we discover a tale more sensual, more devious, and more enthralling than the Victorians could have ever imagined. From the shadowy banks of the river Thames to the wild and windswept Yorkshire coast, Mina vividly recounts the intimate details of what really transpired between her and the Count — the joys and terrors of a passionate affair, as well as her rebellion against her own frightening preternatural powers.
"Synopsis" by , In this wonderfully transporting novel, award-winning author Karen Essex turns a timeless classic inside out, spinning a haunting, erotic, and suspenseful story of eternal love and possession.
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