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)
Historian and musician, shameless slave of the written and spoken word.
Yes, I would. It requires a lot of time but I do commute so it is lovely to have it available. I find the last portion of the novel a bit slow but I really enjoyed the wonderful actors used in this dramatized version, and think it would be harder to listen to if they had not been so talented in their characterizations. I think it is smart for such a long book to be broken up by different narrators as it is an epistolary novel.
Not sure yet, but perhaps Mary Shelly's Frankenstein.
Everything. I was especially impressed with Alan Cumming, and the gentleman who portrayed Jonathan Harker, who I have always found boring as a character. I can't remember his name at the moment but he brought the character to life for me.
Blood and love both come from the heart...and return to it.
Thank you for this dramatized version. It is lovely and I hope there will be more of these kinds of dramatized books in the future.
Yes. This is embarrassing to say. A classic is supposed to be appreciated because it is a classic, but in this performance the story was true entertainment. The 15 hours flew by.
It was nice to have the variety of voices to help identify the (multitude of) characters. Kathrine Kellgren and Alan Cumming were my favorites but all performed well. The character Lucy came across as a bit of an air-head but then again she did in the written book too.
If you are usually a contemporary audible book listener thinking about trying out a classic, this is a good one to try as your first.
This is one of the best, if not the best, of the audible editions I have listened to so far.
The cast of characters presenting the book makes it more gripping as the diary entries are read by in a different voice and allows for more realism.
This is a classic, so how can one choose a favorite scene? It is all fantastic!
I LOVE HISTORY!!!
If you have never had the pleasure of experiencing Dracula before, this is the version that I would recommend that you start with. The narrators do a magnificent service to the overall story as well as the listener's enjoyment.
The great cast at work here really did an amazing job at making me feel for and with the characters, though the ladies' voices could get annoying at times. That said, I never thought I would actually feel scared from reading a book, much less one with a story everyone thinks they know.
Since vampires are so mainstream in pop culture nowadays, Dracula most of all, it was surprising to learn that I knew very little of the original story, and that today's vampire stories are not really above Bram Stoker's. Matter of fact, it's probably the best vampire book I have ever read.
Van Helsing sure stood out.
Yes, I was hesitant about purchasing an audio book with an all star cast, but when I saw that it was unabridged I decided to take a chance on it and I was immediately blown away by the quality of the acting and the story telling.
Then scene in which Dracula enters with the small child for his brides. It horrified me when I saw it on screen so many years ago, not being familiar with the story I chalked it up to Hollywood's use of gratuitous imagery, little could I have imagined it was how it was written by Bram Stoker himself…I was newly horrified.
The emotion behind the words, so very well executed.
It did what it was supposed to do, it scared the s*** out of me.
buy this book. It's worth the listen.
Such a well-written, well-narrated book that I found myself listening to it every chance I got and even looked forward to my morning walk just so I could listen some more.
Any of the classics really. I love the writing of the classics and wish authors wrote that way today. This was so well written that I forgot that I was reading what is considered to be a horror novel. I read it in high school and have always wanted to read it again.
My very favorite was Jonathan Harker, but I also loved Mina.
I would never rename a classic.
The narrating made the book so enjoyable, sometimes even more than when I would read it on my Kindle, simply because I would hear things I didn't "hear" in my reading of it myself.
I did feel, however, that when Dr. Van Helsing was speaking to Mina in the last quarter of the book about the possibility of suicide and their letting her be in full confidence at this point that he sounded more like Dracula than Van Helsing had in all the other parts of his narration. I even had to rewind because I thought I had missed something somewhere about who was actually talking.
Choosing a next book will be difficult because this one was so good.
The voices are very well done and I love how somebody sprung for a cast instead of having one voice do it all. I think it really made this story come to life.
In its best moments its brilliant and scary.
Honestly, the whole cast did a great job.
No, even though its a classic I though the pacing was a little uneven. Sometimes I couldn't put it down and other times I was a little bored. I like Frankenstein better.
Everyone should experience Dracula once and I think this audiobook would probably be one of the best ways.
A well performed telling of a horror classic. I really enjoyed delving back into this story and the cast did a great job.
I liked that they stayed true to the diary format of the original book, each cast member doing their own diary entries in turn.
Mina would be my choice of dinner companion, brave and lovely.
I liked Dracula when I read it a while ago, and it was brilliant to listen to this performance. The diary format of the book makes it perfect for an audiobook, and this all-star cast did a fantastic job.
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