Delphi Edition of the Complete Works of Bram Stoker
For anyone interested in horror fiction Stoker is an essential read. This collection is massive and not all of it is horror. But you do have all the Stoker horror in one volume at an excellent price.
Dracula is, of course, a masterpiece. The inspiration and source for countless written stories and films, it retains its power for the modern reader. It is a long and demanding read, yet there are numerous scenes that hit the reader hard, the sexual subtext rumbles along nicely and Stoker inserts us into the late Victorian period at an oblique angle so that like a lot of the best horror, he’s subversive.
Some readers find his other horror novels such as the Jewel of Seven Stars (both versions included here), The Lady of the Shroud, and The Lair of the White Worm to be less exhilarating than Dracula. Sort of – I found Jewel a terrifying read first time round; Shroud and Worm not so impressive, though worth the effort.
His shorter horror fiction in the collection Dracula’s Guest, is a must read. My favourite from this is The Squaw, an extraordinary tale of revenge, but each of the stories is excellent. The title story is an excised chapter from Dracula but works powerfully on its own.
If you are a younger reader and are ready to take the plunge and look at some of the early Gothic classics that inspired books and films you love, here is one of the wellsprings. For more experienced readers, this book gives you all of your Stoker in the one volume with an opportunity to savour less famous pieces at your leisure.