Dracula, My Love (Paperback)
The Secret Journals of Mina Harker
William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780061923036, 480pp.
Publication Date: July 20, 2010
Author Syrie James (The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen) offers readers a breathtaking new perspective on Bram Stoker’s classic tale of the king of the vampires with Dracula, My Love. In these “Secret Journals of Mina Harker,” the object of Dracula’s desire relates for the very first time the shocking story of her scandalous seduction and sexual rebirth. This is not the chaste vampire romance of Twilight—Dracula, My Love celebrates a passionate obsession in all its hot and sensuous glory.
About the Author
Syrie James is the bestselling author of the critically acclaimed Nocturne; Dracula, My Love; The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte (Great Group Read, Women's National Book Association; Audie Romance Award, 2011), and the international bestseller The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen (Best First Novel 2008, Library Journal.) Translation rights for Syrie's books have been sold in sixteen languages. An admitted Anglophile, Syrie loves paranormal romance and all things 19th century. She lives in Los Angeles and is a member of the Writer's Guild of America.
Praise For Dracula, My Love: The Secret Journals of Mina Harker…
— Library Journal
“This very romantic side to Dracula is powerfully sensuous and masterfully told... Should sit side by side with Bram Stoker’s Dracula on your keeper shelf.”
“5 stars. Poignant, passionate, and powerful... Critically acclaimed and bestselling author, Syrie James, once again transports her readers back in time and enchants them ...Truly outstanding!”
— Austenesque Reviews
“We enter Mina’s psyche...and likewise develop an understanding of Dracula’s motivations. This insight explains why a human woman and a ‘monster’ would literally ache to be with one another. I was exhilarated, enthralled, and completely mesmerized. Vampire book lovers will absolutely love this book.”
“Dracula, My Love had me hooked immediately. Filled with suspense and romance, it had me on the edge of my seat the entire time. It was incredibly well written and I couldn’t put it down. Syrie James paints an amazing picture of Dracula that left me both infatuated and appalled.”
“Only Mina Harker, who once fell under the seductive spell of literature’s most famous vampire, knows Dracula’s true story. James gives readers an intriguing alternate theory as to the events that occurred in Stoker’s classic horror tale while at the same time delivering a spooky yet thoroughly romantic love story.”
— Chicago Tribune
“This remarkable story twists and turns with every page ... The story unfolds with fast-paced action, well-written dialogue, and historical events mixed in with a truly remarkable love story that keeps the reader glued to every page. Another hit (for Syrie James)... right out of the park.”
— Feathered Quill
“Must read... I love the way this book was written... Both love stories (Mina and Jonathan/Mina and Dracula) have such depth... I became so caught up in the story that I wasn’t sure who I wanted Mina to end up with... A really emotional love story. Rating: 9 (Excellent)”
— The Season For Romance
“An excitingly dark tale with a romantic twist...a page turner from start to finish. The author has given Dracula something that is missing in earlier novels – a heart and soul...Like a vampire draining his latest victim, I sucked down every juicy detail of Dracula, My Love.”
— Stephanie's Written Word
“What really happened between Mina and Dracula? Syrie James provides her own provocative interpretation in the exciting Dracula, My Love... She keeps the suspense level high, so that even readers familiar with the original story will be furiously turning pages to see what happens next. Excellent novel.”
— Bitten By Books
“Syrie James paints a vivid picture of woman in the grip of dark passion. If you think you know the legend, her thoroughly modern Mina will surprise and delight you. It’s a dark and sizzling romance for hot summer days and nights.”
— Dolce Dolce
Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com
- Who are your favorite characters in Dracula, My Love, and why? Who is your least favorite character? How is Count Dracula similar to or different from the Dracula portrayed in Bram Stoker's novel, and/or in any of the film versions you've seen?
- Compare and contrast the characters of Lucy and Mina in Dracula, My Love. How do the differences between them ultimately affect their fates?
- Discuss Mina's character arc. At the beginning of the story, what are her viewpoints regarding love, marriage, a woman's role in society, and the need to follow that society's rules? Is Mina an example of traditional Victorian mores? How does Mina grow and change over the course of the story?
- Early in the novel, Mina admits that she's always told Lucy everything, and that she and Jonathan made a solemn pact to be completely honest with each other. Yet Mina conceals her relationship with Mr. Wagner/Dracula from both Lucy and Jonathan. Why? How does the burden of carrying that secret affect her and influence the choices she makes?
- What are Jonathan's and Dracula's respective strengths and weaknesses? Why is Mina attracted to them both? Do you think she loves one more than the other, or just loves them in a different way? Do you empathize and connect with her feelings for Dracula? Who do you think is Mina's ideal mate?
- A long list of evils is attributed to Dracula, most which he refutes. How plausible are his explanations? Do you think he was telling the truth? After hearing Dracula's version of events, did you feel sympathy for him?
- When does Dracula begin to have feelings for Mina, and why? How does he go about pursuing her? Knowing that she is already engaged, what do you think he hopes and expects? How does their relationship build and grow over the course of the novel?
- How does the telepathic bond between Mina and Dracula enhance the story and move the plot forward?
- Discuss the scenes which explore the truth of Mina's parentage and personal history. How does her back story add to her character and to the novel as a whole? How does Mina and Jonathan's shared history influence their present and future?
- Discuss Dracula's origin story as revealed in the novel. How did his personal misfortunes shape the being he becomes? Do you admire him for the choices he's made? Why or why not?
- If you had an eternity before you, how would you spend it?
- Mina reminds Jonathan that her dreams often come true. Did this fact affect your expectations while reading the novel? How does Mina's dream imagery serve the story? When Mina dreams that Dracula makes love to her, do you think it was really just a dream?
- There are many unanswered questions in Bram Stoker's novel, such as Dracula's origin, his motivation for coming to Whitby and London, and the truth behind all that occurs at his castle. How does the author address these and other unanswered questions in Dracula, My Love? Did you find the answers believable and satisfying?
- Did reading Mina's story in the first person enhance the experience for you? What are the benefits of telling a story from the main character's perspective, rather than the third person? What are the limitations?
- Discuss the pros and cons of a vampire's existence as explained in the novel. Do you think Mina made the right choice at the end? Given her options, would you have made the same choice? Why or why not?
- What physical and psychological changes does Mina experience when she is certain she is becoming a vampire?
- Discuss the book's climax and resolution. Do you think the ending was appropriate? What caused Dracula to react and behave the way he did? At the final moment, do you think he did the right thing?
- Examine the final paragraph of the novel. In what ways has Mina's relationship with Dracula changed her forever?