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Why Is Dracula Such A Great Horror Story?

892 words - 4 pages

Why is Dracula such a great horror story?

In my opinion 'Dracula' is a great horror story because it is highly
entertaining in its idea of vampirism, its atmospheric descriptions,
powerful characterisation and the horrific death of Lucy. The novel is
also interesting because of the religious perspectives, such as the
use of garlic, holy water and the crucifix as weapons against evil.

Jonathan Harker's journey to Count Dracula's home is described in
great detail. The atmosphere not only adds to the dangerous ride to
Dracula's Castle, but also comes alive as we're reading it. The
atmosphere surrounding Harker is incredibly frightening but the detail
and descriptions used are so astounding that we can feel the 'strange
chills'. I felt like I was sitting beside Jonathan Harker. I 'shared'
his 'fear'.

Harker is travelling in a Caleche, a small, open, horse drawn carriage
which is obviously dangerous. It adds suspense to the story, which
makes the reader automatically think something terrible is going to
occur. The 'long, agonized wailing' of the dogs seem to go on forever.
As the journey takes longer it becomes more fearsome. Harker feels
'lonely'. Harker's driver is a strange, mysterious character, with his
'gleaming smile' as he steers the Caleche without revealing his face
to Harker, or talking much. At this point the reader is thrilled and
excited, feeling like a character in the story.

The historical detail of the journey is also what makes this novel
brilliant. Harker is very uncomfortable, 'caught my arm in a grip of
steel.' I didn't realise how dangerous and uncomfortable the Caleches
were back a hundred years ago until I read Harker's account of his
journey. As the 'horses began to strain' and 'jump about' you can
imagine how rocky and uncomfortable the journey was. Harker says 'the
horses shared my fear,' this tells us how frightened he was. The
'paralysis of fear' tells us that Harker is clearly too scared to move
a muscle.

The detail is very interesting. Each word kept me entertained, as I'm
sure it does every reader.

Harker arrives at Count Dracula's Castle. This part of the story is
fascinating; Harkers first encounter with Dracula is also 'strange'.

Dracula is described as half-man and half-animal. This is very
peculiar. He is a 'tall, old man,' who is 'clad in black head to toe.'
I would definitely not be happy, if I were to meet him. Dracula has
'hair in palms' and also 'massive eyebrows.' Harker also says
Dracula's 'breath was rank.' This image is certainly odd and Dracula
is not very attractive! This description of Dracula is frightening for
harker mostly, but great for the reader. Stoker's use of language is
totally luminous. These animalistic features of Dracula are eerie not
only to Harker but also to the readers.

Dracula's domestic attentions towards harker are eccentric. The Count
does everything himself. He takes...

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