Anno Dracula (Anno Dracula #1) by Kim Newman
Titan Books (May 2011) | Paperback, 547 pages | Horror

Anno Dracula started off very promising. The mixture of Victorian England, real events and famous characters from history along with real-life people was enough of a draw for me to pick it up.

It looked as though the author was going to take Jack the Ripper’s crimes and give them a paranormal twist, which I did find interesting. However, the story was very slow and didn’t pick up any pace. Each chapter was more like a ‘spot the literary character’ or famous face. The author has kindly added a guide at the back identifying the characters, but it became tedious. I found myself constantly flicking to the back of the book every time a new character was mentioned , this ended up taking me out of the story more often than not and I found it hard to keep up with the story.

There was no way for me to fully engage with any of the characters and though there was some interesting backstory to Dracula, it wasn’t enough to keep me reading. Even now I could not tell you anything about the lead characters except for what is already printed on the front cover. (The front cover of the book I read stated it to be in the style of a carnival side show, with the names of the characters and a brief description of what they were.)

I knew I was in trouble when I struggled to pick up the book in order to read any more. By 150 pages I called it a day and put it aside.

This isn’t the first time I have read a book which attempts to imitate the writing style of the Victorian or Georgian writers, but it was too wordy for me. For a book that does manage to imitate these styles well, I would recommend Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger. The first book in this series is Soulless.

VERDICT:

A good premise that seemed to get bogged down with the details and trying to throw in as many famous faces, both fictional and real, into the mix.

RATING: 

KIM NEWMAN ONLINE
Website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter

BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER

  1. Anno Dracula
  2. The Bloody Red Baron
  3. Judgement of Tears: Anno Dracula
  4. Andy Warhols Dracula

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Gemma

A self confessed geek who likes all things paranormal (except zombies as they scare her) Genre wise she likes horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and historical fiction. [Gemma no longer reviews for BCC]

11 Comments


Rebecca May 21, 2012 at 9:09 am

Shame about this book, the plot sounded so interesting! Hope you have better luck with the next book you read! :D

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Gemma May 21, 2012 at 9:33 am

Yeah, it was a shame as it looked really good. Luckily, the next two books more than made up for it.

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Ryan May 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I’m trying to remember if I’ve reade the entire series or only the first few books. I can’t even remember how much I liked them, but this was years and years ago. I’ve been thinking about rereading them. Sorry you didn’t enjoy it as much as you thought you would.

Reply

Gemma May 21, 2012 at 5:44 pm

Thanks. I think this just wasn’t my cup of tea.

Shame because the premise really was promising. It mixed my faves; vampires, Victorian England and Jack the Ripper

Reply

Ashley Prince May 21, 2012 at 3:39 pm

Oh wow. I am really sad that it was such a let down. I’ve been wanting to read it for a while, but just haven’t gotten around to doing so.

Reply

Gemma May 21, 2012 at 5:45 pm

Don’t let me put you off. It just wasn’t my thing

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Carolyn May 21, 2012 at 6:58 pm

It’s a shame when a book doesn’t live up to expectations. I love the mix of Jack the Ripper, Victorian England and vampires too. Oh well, at least you gave it a good shot.

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Gemma May 21, 2012 at 7:01 pm

I did try my best, but when you struggle to pick the book up to finish it you know you have to call it a day

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Laura May 21, 2012 at 7:21 pm

Yes, I find it hard when there are lots of characters without one to identify with which is what it sounds like this one is like. Shame you didn’t get on with it, but I’m fast learning to cut my losses with books that aren’t my cup of tea.

Reply

Gemma May 21, 2012 at 10:20 pm

I just hate not finishing a boik, but I have a large TBR and need to get it down. There was little to engage me in the story so I cut my losses

Reply

heidenkind May 22, 2012 at 4:18 am

I read this when it first came out (which I think was in the ’90s?), and I agree. It started out great but really got bogged down and boring.

Reply

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