DRACULA IN LOVE
BY KAREN ESSEX
"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."
—Michelle Moran, bestselling author of Nefertiti: A Novel
"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!"
-C.W. Gortner, author of The Last Queen & The Confessions of Catherine de Medici
MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Karen Essex is the author of the historical novel STEALING ATHENA, which chronicles the fantastic journey of the controversial Elgin Marbles; the national and international bestseller LEONARDO'S SWANS, for which she won Italy's prestigious 2007 Premio Roma for foreign fiction; and two acclaimed biographical novels, KLEOPATRA and PHARAOH.
She is also an award winning journalist and a screenwriter, and wrote BETTIE PAGE: LIFE OF A PINUP LEGEND, the only authorized biography of the late pin-up icon.
Presently dividing her time between London and Los Angeles, she has researched and written her newest book, DRACULA IN LOVE, a Victorian Gothic novel. Karen invites friends and readers to follow along with her in her travels as she chronicles her adventures, joys, and sorrows in putting together a complex work of historical fiction: www.karenessex.com/blog. Also, please follow her on Twitter: www.Twitter.com/karenessex.
In DRACULA IN LOVE, Karen Essex has given readers a Gothic adventure of a very well known character and put a new spin on it. Taking the characters from the classic Bram Stoker Dracula novel, she has used extensive research to write a seductive and beautifully crafted new version from a totally different point of view-that of the female, Mina Murray. In Stoker’s novel, Mina Murray is the traditionally proper Victorian fiancé of Dracula’s lawyer, Jonathan Harker, and Mina becomes the innocent target of the Count’s evil act of revenge when he seduces her.
As Essex has the story told from Mina’s point of view, it takes on the feel of historical fiction with Mina being anything but naive as she was in the original tale. Instead, she is a young women haunted by visions and dreams that leave her confused yet eerily fascinated. The nighttime escapades have her drawn to someone she is afraid of, but also desires, and this creature seems to know her inner most wishes and fears.
Mina is a strong main character, as expertly portrayed by Essex, and that immediately drew me to her. She looks for answers to her nightmares by visiting an insane asylum where she comes in contact with Von Helsinger, a unsavory doctor who is experimenting with blood transfusions. He also happens to be fascinated with the feasibility that vampires exist. Other characters are introduced as we learn more about Mina including Jonathan Harker, already mentioned, as well as Lucy Westerna and journalist, Kate Reed. Kate again adding to the theme of strong women during the period when they were rarely written about.
Of course, Count Vladimir Drakulya is there but isn’t a strong physical presence until later in the story when Mira has had dealings with Dr. Von Helsinger and the evil Dr. Seward in the asylum. I found that the asylum section had the most shocking and horror filled scenes in the book. Count Drakulya seemed to be a more contemporary, tolerant, and stable personality in contrast to the other males. Essex clearly made the connection between Drakulya and Mina very powerful.
First to admit, not one who is on the vampire, book reading band wagon, my relationship to all things vampire comes from the Bram Stoker Dracula. I enjoyed the alluring, fast moving plot that Karen Essex has written and this rather lengthy book seemed to go by in a flash. I found myself drawn to it, much like Mina to Dracula, and unable to tear myself away. The extensive research that Essex put into this book built for me a time and place, as well as characters, that I could fully believe in and relate to. It also made me wonder how many other classic characters could be presented from another point of view like this and hope some astute writer, like Karen Essex, may try their hand at it.
THANKS TO ADRIENNE AND FOLKS
AT RANDOM HOUSE PUBLISHING,
I HAVE 3 COPIES OF THIS AMAZING
BOOK TO GIVE AWAY. HERE IS WHAT
YOU NEED TO DO TO WIN A COPY!
--NO P. O. BOXES
---INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
IN CASE YOU WIN!
--ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO
COUNT AS MORE THAN ONE!
HOW TO ENTER:
DON'T FORGET TO ALSO READ MY
GUEST POST AND GET MORE WAYS
TO ENTER FOR CHANCES AT THIS
BOOK BY GOING HERE
6 PM, EST, SEPTEMBER 3!