Becky Wright’s Mr Stoker & I is about as transportive a novel as you can get.
Cast in the most authentic and convincing gothic mould I’ve ever encountered outside of the classics to which this novel pays tribute, Mr Stoker & I tells the story of Bram Stoker’s visit to Whitby, and his true inspiration for Dracula.
To write in the gothic style in contemporary times is to walk a minefield: we are all now conditioned to short, punchy prose, and our attention spans have atrophied into those of petulant children, huffing and puffing should we be made to endure the lengthy syntax of the literary giants of eras gone by. Becky floats through this minefield, keeping the reader hanging onto every word with engaging descriptions and characterisations, and by somehow casting the most uncomfortable and eerie atmospheres I’ve read in a long time.
This is a fascinating book, and paired with a re-read of Stoker’s Dracula, this would make the perfect companion piece, deepening the original story and adding more layers of both mystery and explanation.
Well done to Becky on a remarkable tale!