A post on Dracula-related novels for @NeveyB

Wow… I’m gone to write a novel and I don’t update my real blog in something like eight months! Weird how that works…

But now I’m back!

And, somehow, still dealing with Dracula. I think he’ll be hanging around for a while…

Anyhow… a discussion came up with @DraculaBites and @NeveyB on Twitter a few weeks back about novels related to Bram Stoker’s Dracula. As we talked, I said I’d come up with a list of books related to it for @NeveyB.

So… here’s a list.

It’s best to start with the fiction. I’ll do another list for non-fiction, and also movies, later.

Clearly Bram Stoker never wrote a sequel, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t leave us with a treasure trove of things for other writers (myself included) to run with and create our own sequels (or other Dracula-inspired works).

This is by no means complete, but this should be a good start. I’m not going to cast aspersions on these works — some of them have fans, some of them have detractors, and that’s fine. I’m a firm believer in enjoying what you want to enjoy and telling other people to jump from a cliff if they harangue you about it.

Let’s start with the sequels (direct and indirect). There are other sequels in the works, and I will add them here as they are made available for people to read.

  1. Yes, I’m putting my book, The Heritage, first (it’s my list and my blog… I’m allowed to be biased). It follows Jonathan and Mina’s son, Abraham “Quincey” Harker, through an adventure from 1938–1939. It will be available in a few years.
  2. In terms of “official” sequels, Freda Warrington’s Dracula the Undead from 1997 is the first. Penguin commissioned Warrington to write this sequel for the centennial of Dracula. It was given little attention and I only found it when I started digging around while working on the research for my book. It goes down some familiar paths, but stays within the universe Stoker created (including having quite a bit to do with the Scholomance).
  3. The next book is considered the actual official sequel by Stoker’s estate. Written by (his great-grandnephew) Dacre Stoker and a fellow named Ian Holt, the similarly named Dracula the Un-Dead was published in 2009. The reviews are mixed on this, and I think each reader has to make their own determination on this book. I strongly believe there is merit in this book as a vampire novel… but perhaps not as a Dracula novel.
  4. Tony Lee’s comic book series Harker — From the pages of Bram Stoker’s Dracula (2009) is as direct of a sequel as one can get, taking place the year following the novel with all the characters (including Renfield). It’s a very fast read, and actually uses the Countess Dolingen from “Dracula’s Guest” (just as I do). It might be difficult to find, but it’s available through Comixology (if you use their service for electronic comics).
  5. Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian (2005) is a sequel, but focuses very heavily on the tenuous connection between Count Dracula and Vlad the Impaler. If you aren’t one to accept that connection easily, be forewarned.
  6. Bloodline (2006) and Bloodline Book Two: Reckoning (2007) by Kate Cary are direct sequels showing a vampiric Quincey Harker in World War I and thereafter. I haven’t read them, though I understand Dracula himself plays heavily in these.
  7. Kim Newman’s Anno Dracula works aren’t necessarily sequels as much as they are an alternate storyline where the count won at the end of Dracula and goes on to marry Queen Victoria. This is a massive romp through the real and literary history of the 20th century, intertwining the two so tightly and expertly that, if you have to choose between this and Harry Turtledove, this is the alternate history series you should read. The series consists of Anno Dracula, The Bloody Red Baron, Dracula Cha Cha Cha, and the soon to be published Johnny Alucard. He’s also written a treasure trove of novellas and short stories tied to the series. The best way to see an entire listing is on Wikipedia.
  8. The Tomb of Dracula comic book series from Marvel (1972–79) is an excellent example of the horror comics of the 1970’s. By this point, Hammer Films and their franchise had brought the count into the then-modern world (in Dracula A.D. 1972 and The Satanic Rites of Dracula), but no one was really paying attention to them at that point. Instead, it was Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan who shaped the popular view of Dracula in the 20th century through their work on this comic book (and the relaxation of the Comics Code in the early 1970’s is directly related to this and the other horror comics of the time). There are issues that can be skipped, but picking up the collected editions of this and Dracula Lives! would be worthwhile for a fan of the count, the old Hammer movies, or non-sparkling vampires with attitude!
  9. Paul Witcover’s Dracula: Asylum (2006) is a sequel, but not to Bram Stoker’s Dracula… it’s a sequel to the 1931 Universal movie with Bela Lugosi (which is curious, since the Dracula’s Daughter from 1936 is a direct sequel, and the count’s remains are pretty much destroyed in that movie)! I hadn’t heard of this book before today and plan on checking it out soon.
  10. This is something I just came across, but there is a series called The Dracula Horror Series by a fellow named Robert Lory. There are no less than nine books in the series and Dracula is back in them, under control (or perhaps he is doing the controlling?) of a wheelchair-bound older man named Damien Harmon. The first book is named (appropriately) Dracula Returns. The Groovy Age of Horror has write-ups on all nine books.
  11. Also over at The Groovy Age of Horror are write-ups on Peter Tremayne’s loose trilogy of Dracula books. Again, I just came across these. The first (Dracula Unborn) seems promising, and the second (The Revenge of Dracula) and third might be interesting to check out (it’s curious the third, which seems to be a romance, is titled Dracula, My Love… the same as a title in the section below).

The next group is made up of the books written as part of the periphery of the original book (think of how Wide Sargasso Sea relates to Jane Eyre):

  1. Dracula, My Love by Syrie James explores Mina’s desire to be with Dracula. I’ve not read it yet (I own it), but it sounds interesting.
  2. Renfield: Slave of Dracula by Barbara Hambly is a retelling of the book from Renfield’s point of view. Hambly is no stranger to vampires, having written the excellent (and not Dracula-related) James Asher vampire novels (Those Who Hunt the Night, Traveling with the Dead, Blood Maidens, and the soon-to-be-published Magistrates of Hell). Again, I have yet to read this.
  3. The Book of Renfield: A Gospel of Dracula by Tim Lucas is another retelling from Renfield’s viewpoint (and, again, I haven’t read it).

Then, finally, the retellings of the original books:

  1. iDrakula by Becca Black is a modern-day retelling of the original book using text messages and email to recreate the epistolary nature of the original. I have read this. It’s well done and is a quick read.
  2. Fangland by John Marks is another updating of the story, and this one does its best to stay away from the name “Dracula.” The Harker name appears, the epistolary format is used once again, and there are travels to eastern Europe… but it seems to stay away from simply retelling Dracula or retelling it with a twist. Again, I have yet to read this.

As I mentioned above, this list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s a start.

See anything I missed? Drop me a line in the comments.