The entire novel is presented in the form of letters, diaries and newspaper cuttings: so the scientific method of observing and recording information is integral to both the structure of the book itself, and to the attempts of Van Helsing and his friends to destroy Dracula. Set against this atmosphere of scientific advance, however, are the intangible concepts of religious faith and the supernatural. Van Helsing may use blood transfusions in an attempt to keep Lucy alive, but he also resorts to garlic flowers and crucifixes to hold the vampire at bay.
It was also interesting to read about some of the history associated with the novel and the removal of so many pages.
When the novel was finally released on May 26, 1897, the first 101 pages had been cut, numerous alterations had been made to the text, and the epilogue had been shortened, changing Dracula’s ultimate fate as well as that of his castle. Tens of thousands of words had vanished. Bram’s message, once concise and clear, had blurred between the remaining lines.
In the 1980s, the original Dracula manuscript was discovered in a barn in rural northwestern Pennsylvania. Nobody knows how it made its way across the Atlantic. That manuscript, now owned by Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen, begins on page 102. Jonathan Harker’s journey on a train, once thought to be the beginning of the story, was actually in the thick of it.
This raises a question: what was on the first 101 pages? What was considered too real, too frightening, for publication?
Another book read by Christopher Lee.