From the first time that I read Bram Stoker’s Dracula in my teens, though I revered the work, I just knew that the character Mina Harker, Dracula’s obsession, was not satisfied with the role Mr. Stoker gave her—the quintessentially compliant Victorian virgin. I knew that there had to be more to her than that. (I knew that there had to be more to any woman than that.)
Anyone who has read my books knows that I am all about restoring grrrrl power to the historical record. In Dracula in Love, I decided to tackle a work of fiction, reexamining an iconic female character that had not been given her due. In a nutshell, my plan was to rescue Mina from Stoker’s sexist fantasy of the nice, cooperative girl, and empower her.
I am the guest blogger today at the superb site “Wonders & Marvels: A community for curious minds who love history, its odd stories, and good reads.” That’s us, right? The post is about my research into Victorian insane asylums and female hysteria for DRACULA IN LOVE.
THE SITE IS ALSO HOSTING A 5 COPY GIVEAWAY OF DRACULA IN LOVE!
More missing sheep, this time in Tuscany! Call it a panther if it makes you feel better…but we know the truth!
Tuscany Trembling over Big Cat
Phantom Panther Gives Italians Paws for Thought
By Hans-Jürgen Schlamp in Massa Marittima, Italy
The village of Massa Marittima in Tuscany, Italy.
A large black cat believed to be a panther is stalking the fields and forests of southern Tuscany, striking fear into residents and holidaymakers. Hunters have angered animal rights campaigners by offering to kill it, but the debate is academic — “Bagheera” is running rings around its pursuer.
Believe it or not, people often ask me, “Karen, was Vlad the Impaler really a vampire?” I finally decided to make a trip to Romania and Transylvania to investigate. The next few posts will be about that journey.
We’d set out for the Carpathian Mountains in Transylvania from Bucharest in the morning, encountering a tempestuous rainstorm so severe as to be deafening, lashing the vehicle and obscuring our sight. In the brutal rain teaming from a blackened, ominous sky, it became easy to imagine why Bram Stoker set his novel Dracula in this countryside.
For the next week or so I will be lurking around Bucharest and haunting the Carpathian Mountains. If you need me, please send your falcon, note attached, to Bran Castle in Transylvania. I’ll post an immediate reply.