Followers of the popular vampire literary and film interpretations of recent years might be blasé about another performance of the exquisitely written novel that started it all. But listening to this full-cast performance turns out to be remarkably suspenseful and chilling. The superlative cast lends this powerful production the diversity that is required by the structure of the novel, which includes journal entries and letters. Each actor employs various accents, infusing into the characters vibrant emphasis, urgency, and dread. The famed vampire Count Dracula leaves a swath of exsanguinated bodies in his wake as he attempts to relocate from Transylvania to England in 1897, stalked by the brave Van Helsing.
Audie Award, Distinguished Achievement in Production, 2013
Audie Award, Multi-voiced Performance, 2013
Audie Award Nominee, Classic, 2013
Because of the widespread awareness of the story of the evil Transylvanian count and the success of numerous film adaptations that have been created over the years, the modern audience hasn't had a chance to truly appreciate the unknowing dread that readers would have felt when reading Bram Stoker's original 1897 manuscript. Most modern productions employ campiness or sound effects to try to bring back that gothic tension, but we've tried something different. By returning to Stoker's original storytelling structure - a series of letters and journal entries voiced by Jonathan Harker, Dr. Van Helsing, and other characters - with an all-star cast of narrators, we've sought to recapture its originally intended horror and power.
This production of Dracula is presented by what is possibly the best assemblage of narrating talent ever for one audiobook: Emmy Award nominees Alan Cumming and Tim Curry plus an all-star cast of Audie award-winners Simon Vance (The Millenium Trilogy), Katherine Kellgren (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies), Susan Duerden (The Tiger’s Wife), John Lee (Supergods) and customer favorites Graeme Malcolm (Skippy Dies), Steven Crossley (The Oxford Time Travel series), Simon Prebble (The Baroque Cycle), James Adams (Letters to a Young Contrarian), Nicola Barber (The Rose Garden), Victor Villar-Hauser (Fun Inc.), and Marc Vietor (1Q84). These stellar narrators have been cast as follows:
Alan Cumming as Dr. Seward
Simon Vance as Jonathan Harker
Katy Kellgren as Mina Murray/Harker
Susan Duerden as Lucy Westenra
Tim Curry as Van Helsing
Graeme Malcolm as Dailygraph correspondent
Steven Crossley as Zookeeper’s account and reporter
Simon Prebble as Varna
James Adams as Patrick Hennessey
Nicola Barber as Sister Agatha
Victor Villar-Hauser as Arthur Holmwood
Marc Vietor as Quincey Morris
John Lee as Introductory paragraph, various letters
Public Domain (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
"Listening to this full-cast performance turns out to be remarkably suspenseful and chilling…The superlative cast lends this powerful production the diversity that is required by the structure of the novel…Each actor employs various accents, infusing into the characters vibrant emphasis, urgency, and dread." (AudioFile)
Yes. I have always loved Dracula stories. The movie is one of my very few "repeaters"and the audio book may be too.
This was my first audio book.
The voice inflections, emotion, pauses for effect.....
I loved the whole book
Listening to it being read to me was more fun than I thought it would be.
REALLY ENJOYED IT!!!
Multiple narrators kept the story moving and did not seem stagnant
Had attempted to read this book years ago, several times, but was never able to get to far into it because it is written as a series of letters and journal entries. Listening to the narration from several different narrators brought the book to life and I even felt my heart rate increase in several places. This was my first foray into audible books and i am hooked...
My second or third time experiencing this fun novel, but my first time with an audiobook version. I was excited about this cast but disappointed in their very different approaches -- vastly different (or no) accents for Van Helsing, Dracula, Holmwood (especially when he becomes Lord). Difficult to tell which narrator was which, but I believe it was Alan Cumming who did absolutely no accent for Van Helsing, which rendered Stoker's broken, second-language dialect absurd.
This would have to be one of the best audiobooks I've heard. The cast is great, the production superb. It was a treat to hear the 'real' Dracula story read so well, as up until now I'd only seen the sometimes rather dodgy film adaptations.
The book itself is in some ways a victim of the age it was written in, with the characters sometimes a bit one-dimensional, and the portrayal of the female characters being rather cringe-worthy by today's standards. This is to be expected for a book of the time, though, and doesn't detract from the enjoyment. The ominous, brooding atmosphere of the book comes through from the start, and remains to the end.
All in all, very much worth the credit and the listening time.
This book rambles on and on and on - never seeming to get anywhere. I kept reading hoping to get to a consistent focus, but finally I gave up and put the book down - permanently.
Perhaps - content was the issue not narration.
I wasn't impressed by any of the characters.
The quality of the voice-acting was wonderful and the different voices for the different characters helped to immerse me into the story.
It's clear display of good and evil and the masterful suspense woven by Bram Stoker were highlights. I was nearly always eager for the next "chapter."
I would not rename it.
I loved the voice inflections. My wife read the book first, then listened in with me while riding in the car. She said the story is much easier and quicker to listen to than to read due to the way in which authors wrote that long ago.
If you haven't ever listened to Dracula - treat yourself to this. I enjoyed it a great deal.
I really enjoyed this audio version of Bram Stoker's Dracula! The all-star cast makes the characters come alive, giving it the feel similar to a dramatization. It's worth listening to again. Cumming and Curry are excellent as are the rest of the narrators. A must listen for fans of the classic novel as well as those who may not be as familliar with the story. I highly recommend it.
I have never read the book but it's amazing how good the audio version is. I couldn't stop listening! There is so much detail that the listener can visualize the events, actions, and locations.
I liked the Professor. But I was very skeptical of him for most of the book. Some of his passion was a little questionable at first. He was, however, great at deducing conclusions and solving problems.
The narrators brought the book and the characters to life. They did an amazing job.
I liked listening to more than one narrator and Allen Cummings did an outstanding job.
When the 'insane' patient fell off the balcony to his death. I would have liked to have heard more about him.
Bram Stoker's imagination is truly amazing.
What an incredible performance! Alan Cumming and Tim Curry! Not to mention Katy Kellgren. Just incredible.
Also, I have always loved the story. Never could understand why Hollywood has never tried to get it right. There's a lot of tension there. Could it be because "darling Miss Mina" is too strong a female character?
This performance is incredible the way it just grabs you and doesn't let go. Thank you Audible!
"Frankenstein Assemblage From Anaemic All-Star Cast"
Very disappointed with this version of Dracula; I was looking to spend a credit wisely, but was regretting it within 30 mins. What could possibly go wrong? A stellar cast, the promised restitution of the horror and power missing in so many other productions, and all the 'campiness' and creepy music erased. For me, however, much of the narration seems decidedly lacklustre, rather careless even, lacking the much vaunted drive and tension in numerous sections: in short it seems to lack direction. To me, it seems not to have been directed at all but 'divvied up' and then reassembled. One of the female characters speaks throughout in the same simpering and numbing three-note cadence, while one character accent, from the North East of England sounds suspiciously as if modelled on Daphne out of 'Frasier'. Editing choices militate against any build in tension: pauses are chopped out, sentences butt up against each other as if there was a shortage of 'tape'. Wish I'd gone for one of the single narrator versions or the BBC dramatized version.
"In many way's great, in other ways not so great"
Alan Cumming's Dr Seward, and John Lee's (other persons) performances are great. I also enjoyed Simon Vance's Johnathan Harker. The whole thing comes together very well, with exception to only a few irritations.
Difficult to say, as most audio books I've heard have only one performer, or narrator. Being rather fond of John Lee, as a narrator, and with consideration to another 'classic,' a revenge masterpiece in this case, I would strongly recommend The Count of Monte Cristo. However, it's a very long, unabridged listen (50+ hrs), compared to this much shorter, unabridged audio book (c15hrs).
Alan Cumming's Dr Seward
I never do - always too many hours to sit through!
I wasn't terribly keen on the female parts of this particular narration. Perfectly clear, and well read, however the characterisation in no way appealed to me. I thought for a while that Mina Murray/Harker (Katy Kellgren) and Lucy Westenra (Susan Duerden) were performed by the same person, there being only minor character alterations between the two, regarding tone and voice. More discernibly different voice actors in this case would have helped this particular version enormously. Susan Duerden's 'Lucy,' of the two female performers in this case, was the most annoying.
"Horror well done."
I love Bram Stokers "Dracula" of which I have many audiobook versions. Personally I find the multiple cast members bring a whole new world to the characters and story pace, rather than a lone narrator. Some of the accents and pronunciations are a little off, but I like the quirkiness and professionalism of this audiobook.
"Classic horror with multiple voices"
The basic story of Dracula is probably familiar to most, but it is the central concept that stays longest in the mind after reading/listening. To be fair the plot loses steam at various moments and the characters are fairly flat, but the vampire and Transylvania as a setting have had so much impact on Twentieth Century culture that this book needs to read by everyone at least once just to see where it all came from. And I can't think of a better way to do that than listening to this audio-book. The book is narrated by various voices, so likewise this audio-book is read by a different narrator for each character, such as Alan Cumming for Seward and Time Curry as Van Helsing. This works very well, the multiple voices really adding something extra to sustain interest - this really is one of the most enjoyable audio-books I have listened to: A massively influential book read very well - highly recommended.
"It's a cliche beater!"
The full cast narration was one of the best features of this audiobook. All accomplished and convincing audio actors, they do a great job of establishing empathy with the characters and creating a real sense of impulsion to the story. I expected cliched and over played 'horror' story. The reality was much more subtle and engaging. There was nothing not to like!
The most interesting aspect of the plot was the team of individuals that came together to bring Dracula down. Least interesting were the somewhat forced plugs given to the 'surprising' ability of a woman who masters both shorthand and typewriting to help her husband with his work!
The ghost ship sailing into port. Fabulous tension.
Yes. I went so far as to hire the DVD of the 1998 film. What a travesty! Camped up and totally unwatchable.
Oh God Yes!
It is beautifully true to the original. Their was a sense of the times delivered in the performances. The atmosphere was also deliciously conveyed in the audio background.
The nature of the book is too have many perspectives and each of the narrators/actors was wonderful in their delivery. It is also very refreshing and dynamic to have the different voices journey you through the story.
This is a classic that will be revisited several times in my life.
"Well worth listening to"
Everyone has heard of Dracula. Everyone has seen at least one film, But how many people have bothered with the original book?
This a great retelling of the original with the cast delivering excellent performances. There are some genuinely creepy elements to the book which explains why it grabbed the imagination, However, I also found the character of Lucy irritating which does take away a bit from the story, However I would recommend that you try this if you want to find out what the fuss is about and why it is a classic
Twilight it's not. Thank goodness.
I had never read the book and my only knowledge of the story is the 1990 film starring Gary Oldman which I hadn't particularly enjoyed.
As is often the case the book is actually so much better. A tense and horrifying tale that had me on the edge of my seat throughout and shutting the window and checking under the bed at night!
Brought to life by an excellent cast, Tim Curry as Van Helsing stood out for me particularly although all the voice actors did an amazing job at building the tension.
"Will disturb your sleep"
As preparation for a project set in Whitby I downloaded Bram's Stoker's classic "Dracula' to as useful way of getting a feel for the place. This is a very unnerving story and rather than providing me with local colour on Whitby, the novel kept me awake for 3 nights as I became fixated with the plot and characters. It does not matter how many second rate horror movies have been made of this story, the original does not fail to chill. Stoker's detail and multi-vocal perspective seems innovative and designed to entrap the reader. Read with restraint and precision by an able cast, this is a must listen.
"Classic story horrible narration."
I should qualify this statement by saying that not all of the narrator was bad it was the voice of Lucy that was the worst.
The book itself is overwritten and extremely wordy but it's a great tale and well worth reading just don't listen to this version.
The audio quality was good, but the narration was awful in places, it almost put me off finishing the book.
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