Bram Stoker’s Dracula has become a modern classic since it was first published over 100 years ago in 1897. The book has since inspired countless stage, film, and television adaptations and Dracula has become one of the most iconic monsters of all time. Fans of the original novel will be pleased to learn that Bram Stoker’s great-grand nephew, Dacre Stoker, is working on an official sequel to the book called Dracul.
As The Guardian reports, the prequel will be based upon research into the original, unedited version of Dracula, along with family tales from the Stoker family. Dacre Stoker will be aided by co-writer JD Barker and the story will apparently be set in 1868 and follows a young Bram Stoker encountering some of the creatures he would later go on to write about. Publishing rights were sold in North America for a six figure sum and Transworld has the UK rights.
Transworld editor Simon Taylor described it as “terrific fun – and suitably terrifying.” Film rights have already been sold to paramount and the director of the new adaptation of Stephen King’s It, Andy Muschietti, is attached.
Dacre has stated that there are 102 pages missing from the original draft of Dracula and only 17 of them were recovered. These were later published by Bram’s widow in 1914 as Dracula’s Guest. Dacre and Barker have been picking through Bram’s notes and the original draft in order to get an idea of what the remaining lost pages may have been like. They looked “for lines that were crossed out that may have referenced anything Bram had to take out of the 102 pages,” said Dacre. “These crossed-out lines gave us clues about what may have been on those missing pages. Since Dracul is a prequel … we wanted to have a really good idea what was included in Bram’s original and unedited version of Dracula.”
Dacre describes his prequel novel as “the story of the events in Bram’s life that led him to write Dracula … The story focuses on Bram and his family, as a young boy growing up in Clontarf, Artane and Dublin. These parts were based on Stoker family background stories [and] knowledge, all of the existing biographies, excerpts from The Lost Journal [Bram’s private notebook] and our speculation.”
Details on the plot are scarce but the book will see Bram encounter “an ungodly evil, which he traps in an ancient tower.” Transworld’s Taylor said: Dracul “speculates on what Bram Stoker’s early life – he was a sickly child, often bedridden – might have been like had the creatures he later created been real. The authors have very cleverly and convincingly resurrected the tone of the original but in a modernised voice,” said Taylor. “It includes some nicely handled nods to the original novel, and like Dracula often uses an epistolary narrative form. I think the novel works so well because it’s both a proper partner to the original Dracula – doesn’t mess with that story but honours it – while being a deliciously, blood-chillingly creepy horror novel in its own right.” Dracul is set to be released in 2018.