The best books that feature Dracula as a main character

The Books I Picked & Why

Dracula

By Bram Stoker

Book cover of Dracula

Why this book?

If it weren’t for this groundbreaking classic, all the books and movies and television shows about vampires would not exist. Stoker created not just the iconic vampire with his novel but much of the vampire lore. I own multiple copies of Dracula and had read it numerous times before being inspired to create vampires like Stoker’s in my book. While people have used their imaginations to create new breeds of vampires (think Twilight or True Blood, for example), I still think the creepiest, and by far the scariest vampire will always be Count Dracula.


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The Historian

By Elizabeth Kostova

Book cover of The Historian

Why this book?

This book should have been called The Historians because nearly every character in it from Vlad the Impaler to the narrator, herself, are historians. Kostova's characters use history to track down the ancient vampire, and this is the reason I found this book so compelling as I was also using history when writing my novel. A plus for me was that I also found myself caring for the characters. The Historian spans centuries and takes you through many countries in the hunt for the vampire who has wreaked havoc on so many lives and does so in a compelling way.


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Dracul

By Dacre Stoker, J.D. Barker

Book cover of Dracul

Why this book?

I must admit this book appealed to me first because it was co-written by the great-grand-nephew of Bram Stoker. I also loved that a young Bram Stoker was a main character. I won’t offer any spoilers but it’s a fascinating tale about how Stoker was inspired to write his book, Dracula. If you’re looking for a horror tale, this book supplies plenty of terror and like most books that feature Dracula as a character, you will find yourself in locations all over Europe. This book offers yet another fine example of the enduring spell Count Dracula casts on our imaginations.


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Powers of Darkness: The Lost Version of Dracula

By Bram Stoker, Valdimar Ásmundsson, Hans De Roos

Book cover of Powers of Darkness: The Lost Version of Dracula

Why this book?

This Icelandic Dracula remained hidden from the world-at-large as merely a translation of the original for more than a century before Hans Corneel de Roos translated the Icelandic back into English. What he discovered is that Asmundsson took the liberty of making Dracula his own book. A Nordic spin on the vampire is reason enough to discover this interesting take on Stoker’s Dracula. Two-thirds of the book takes place at the Count’s castle in Transylvania where the notorious vampire is given much more depth and voice. Nordic lore spices this story up as well as a very seductive vampiress. The book is also much shorter than Stoker’s, which makes it an easy read.


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Anno Dracula

By Kim Newman

Book cover of Anno Dracula

Why this book?

Newman’s creative mashup brings a dizzying host of personalities into the Jack the Ripper murders as historical people and characters from fiction collide in Queen Victoria’s London. Vlad Tepes casts a long shadow across the political and social landscape. This take on Dracula himself, and other ancient vampires, is fresh and frightening and I was glad to discover it. The playful mix has Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes and Inspector Lestrade investigating The Ripper in a world where vampires are out in public, and Vlad is Prince Consort to Queen Victoria. The bold concept works well and is a ferociously fun ride.


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