Dracula’s Guest, by Bram Stoker

Eight stars

While poking around for new finds on the topic of Dracula (especially those told by both Stokers), I stumbled upon this short story by the elder Stoker. In rural Germany, a man is travelling by coach and chooses to stray off the beaten path. He makes his way to a manor house and into a sizeable cemetery, where one large tombstone catches his eye. With the sound of wolves filling the air, one such creature soon appears on the scene, as though it felt the need to mark its territory. Alone and in a foreign land at night, our protagonist might have met his match in a lupine enemy, but there’s a twist… read the story to find out a little more! A great addition to anyone who loves Dracula or Stoker’s writing.

As I read this piece, I felt as though I had already come across it in the past, though I cannot place where I might have done so. Without tipping my hand too much, the title of the piece might not be as truthful for those who skim through the story, though it does have a deeper meaning if you take the time to think about it. Written in 1914–or at least published at that time—it has quite the feel of the original Dracula story, though any reader who has delved into Dacre Stoker’s sequel to the Dracula piece will see some parallels there as well. The piece flows really well, though it seems to be done just as it is getting started. I’d almost have wanted more, though Stoker does a fine job with his descriptions and build-up. I would say that anyone handed this piece and told to ‘get into’ Dracula with it will likely not return to seek out the classic novel, but there is a definite horror aspect that only Stoker can create.

Kudos, Mr. Stoker, for such a great short story. I hope many will take the time to read this after they have invested time in your masterwork on the subject!

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/248185-a-book-for-all-seasons