Saturday, October 9, 2010

iDrakula by Bekka Black

Book Details
iDrakula by Bekka Black
Paperback, 160 Pages
2010, Sourcebooks Fire
ISBN: 1402244657

The classic vampire story that started it all gets new life for a generation of connected teens

18-year-old Jonathan Harker is diagnosed with a rare blood disorder after visiting a Romanian Count. His girlfriend Mina and a pre-med student named Van Helsing team up to investigate the source of the disease. The teenagers discover a horrifying truth: the Count is a vampire. The harrowing events unfold through emails, text messages, web pages, Twitter feeds, and instant messaging-the natural modernization of Bram Stoker's original Dracula, which was written in letters, diary entries, and news clippings.

iDrakula is essentially Dracula for teenagers. Meant to connect with them on their technological level, much of the original story is pared down to its barest essentials and then presented through different communication mediums.

I liked the idea of the text messages and emails. It really put the reader right in the present state of the characters. Most of Mina's web browser images seemed to showcase random useless information though. Why did we have to see the class schedule for her martial arts class? The story comes across well, but I was left wondering - who really emails their friends and boyfriend that much? Why doesn't anyone actually call each other if they're on the phone text messaging anyway? Perhaps I'm missing the point being older than the intended audience, but as a heavy user of all of these technologies I have to wonder if this is really an accurate portrayal of how this would have played out with teens. Some of the more internal thoughts and feelings were lost as there was no text other than what was conveyed by text, email and browser.

Jonathan is a complete tool is this version. While he's always been far less than perfect in other versions, he's beyond all reason and comprehension here. There is absolutely no possibility of sympathy for him in iDrakula. It's seriously so bad that Mina has to worry if the anemia is caused by an STD he gave her.

This book is a very, very quick, short, easily read book. I completed it in about an hour. This updated version of Dracula will likely appeal to teens that don't read much. Avidly reading teens and adults will find themselves wanting more substance.


Bekka Black's website

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