15 February, 2018


Title: Johnny Alucard
Author:  Kim Newman
Series: Anno Dracula
Genres: Vampires, Horror, Historical fiction
Publisher: Titan Books
Release: September 17th 2013
Source: Hardback
Pages: 400

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DRACULA COMES TO NEW YORK: Kim Newman returns to one of the great bestselling vampire tales of the modern era. Considered alongside I Am Legend and Interview with theVampire as one of the stand-out vampire stories of the last century - this brand-new novel is the first in over a decade from the remarkable and influential Anno Dracula series.

Newman’s dark and impish tale begins with a single question: What if Dracula had survived his encounters with Bram Stoker’s Dr. John Seward and enslaved Victorian England?

Fallen from grace and driven from the British Empire in previous instalments, Dracula seems long gone. A relic of the past. Yet, when vampire boy Johnny Alucard descends upon America, stalking the streets of New York and Hollywood, haunting the lives of the rich and famous, from Sid and Nancy to Andy Warhol, Orson Welles, and Francis Ford Coppola, sinking his fangs ever deeper into the zeitgeist of 1980s America, it seems the past might not be dead after all.


EXPECTATIONS: I was so excited to see this book further in the series! The third one ends a tad severely, I was afraid that it was an end of a trilogy. Thus, picking up this New York smell wafting baby with hopes of more Dracula as Father in Darkness - I was thrilled. Expectations high, I repeat, expectations very high. 

THE WORLD: America, the land of promise, barely tainted by the vampire filth for the time being. But much like rats, they keep finding their way in, and before one can notice, decades from, I think, around 60s to as far as 90s get blurred with a red haze of new drug called Drac. Stuff that gives you all the perks of being a vampire, without any of the cons, such as dying, losing your reflection and such. Movie magic is the greatest magic here, Andy Warhol is about to drop his famous soup can artworks, and you really don't want to be a bore right now. Being warm is a bore, after all, so why don't you join the red crowd?... This is where the tables turn. For with world going mad for powdered vampire blood, for that is exactly what Drac is, what happens when the supply of it gets cut or disturbed? What happens when a mob of junkies is cut off and a vampire walks in? This is the world we're presented with. Johnny Pop's, Johnny Alucard's world. 

CHARACTERS: Kate is hired to be a screen-play writing helper, as someone who actually saw Dracula, and lived under his rule, in a movie they're making about the man, based on Bram Stoker's book. During this dreadful, unluck upon unluck piled filming, Kate meets a boy, Ion, and even though she knows the boy is no younger than thirty, and merely looks a teenager, her motherly instincts kick right in. She takes the child under her care, and when he asks to be taken to America, she makes sure he gets there, under new, american name - Johnny, Johnny Pop. Genevive Dieudonne reappeared too, with her own adventures mostly, trying her hand at playing a private eye, up until vampire slayers get sent after her, slayers who know nothing of vampires and kill her warm friend just because she nibbled on him once or twice, with his consent too. Penelope Churchward, on the other hand, is going big. She's training a new kind of vampires, a kind ready for what's about to happen... Or at least as ready as they can be for this Second Coming of the King of the Cats. For Dracula's presence is not forgotten, nor did it ever fade enough to begin with. 

ROMANCE: There's a fling there and here, but no real romance here. Can't say I mind.

GOOD: I like the idea of this, kinda like, vampire evolution. They, well, some, go from blood to souls. They seem to absorb far more than any vampire ever has, adjusting their whole bodies for it, quite literally too.

BAD: Where do I begin? Well, for starters, author named every movie of Dracula made in that time period ever, mentioning every actor, every director, every writer, and every artist. There were so many useless name drops, and so many scenes, so very very many scenes, including the literal ones, for half the book is someone filming this or that version of Dracula, or an adult movie. It really got on my nerves, and by the end of the book, I was skimming over a lot of them.

OVERALL: This was one mighty hard book to read. I couldn't concentrate with the audiobook, because there's just too much of what we call "from empty to leaky", absolutely pointless descriptions that take up so much time, so much space! Your mind zones out and next thing you know, you didn't catch that, rewind! I had to read my physical copy, thus, which took forever too, for it's not easy to read what you couldn't even listen to. So all in all, this was a great story, with such excessive burden piled upon it, that I don't even know anymore whether it's worth it!

What do you think about Johnny Alucard?



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