Tag: Co-Author

Dacre Stoker – Dracula: The Un-Dead | Review

Title: Dracula: The Un-Dead

Author: Dacre Stoker

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 424

Rating: 7/10

 

Dacre Stoker - Dracula: The Un-Dead

Dacre Stoker – Dracula: The Un-Dead

 

This book is promoted as the official sequel to Bram Stoker’s Dracula, presumably because it’s written by Dacre Stoker, one of the author’s direct descendants. The entire concept seems a little alien to me, because I don’t think that Dracula even needed a a sequel, and it if was to have one then the only man who should have written it was Bram Stoker himself. Still, it was too good to pass up, and so I decided to check it out.

It’s pretty well-written, potentially because of Ian Holt, Stoker’s co-author, and the pacing is pretty good – in some ways, this book actually has a few edges over Stoker’s original masterpiece, but part of that might be due to the fact that the help that’s available to authors is much better now then it was back then. It was nothing special – nothing to write home about – but it was at least easily readable, and decent enough in its own right.

The story line follows what happens when Quincey Harker, the son of Jonathan and Mina from the original novel, as he gets involved with the stage and stumbles upon a production of Dracula which is being directed by Bram Stoker himself. Bit weird, right? In many ways, it goes kind of meta, but it doesn’t matter too much because Stoker only plays a minor part – in fact, I feel as though he could have been written out of the story line with no issues, so I’m not sure why they chose to include him.

 

Dacre Stoker

Dacre Stoker

 

From there, he must attempt to discover what’s happening, because history seems to be about to repeat itself. That’s all I’m going to say right now, but I will tell you that most of the characters from the previous book make a reappearance, but they’re in danger – in fact, a lot of people die, in a lot of horrible ways.

I’m just not sure on this one – it feels like a shameless marketing ploy, and whilst it is well-executed, it just feels as though its entire existence is unnecessary. I’d recommend it to some people, but not all – only if you really enjoyed Dracula, and you want to roll the dice and give it a chance. If you haven’t read Dracula, then read that first and make your mind up; if you have read Dracula, and you thought it was just okay, then don’t read this. It’s your choice!

 

Bram Stoker

Bram Stoker

 

Click here to buy Dracula: The Un-Dead.

 


Paul Gascoigne – Gazza: My Story | Review

Title: Gazza: My Story

Author: Paul Gascoigne

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 536

Rating: 7/10

 

Paul Gascoigne - Gazza: My Story

Paul Gascoigne – Gazza: My Story

 

He’s the footballer we love to hate to love – Paul Gascoigne, one of the original ‘bad boys‘ of football, a man who’s faced many of the same struggles as George Best. His bestselling autobiography covers everything you’d expect, from his early career to his downfall at the hands of drink and drugs.

In fact, My Story leaves off before the modern day, which can only be a blessing – since its publication, the ex-footballer has been dismissed from his managerial post at Kettering Town and been in trouble with the media due to his run-ins with the law. That said, you can hardly fault Headline, the book’s publishers, for failing to realise that Gazza’s career as a bad boy was only just beginning back in 2004, when the book was first published.

The actual quality of the writing is pretty good, way more than you’d expect from a guy who’s presumably lost half of his brain cells from too many headers and too many drinks. One can only presume that it’s because of the talents of Hunter Davies, Gazza’s co-author – Hunter is a veteran journalist, the author of dozens of books including the only ever authorised biography of The Beatles. I can’t help but feeling that it’s his influence which has made this book so readable, a little like the written equivalent of watching reality TV shows.

 

Paul Gascoigne

Paul Gascoigne

 

The book is also packed with photographs from the footballer’s own archive, from the young Gazza in his football kit to a shot of the star fishing “while in Arizona at the Cottonwood clinic” in May 2003. The caption for the photo reveals that the star keeps it in his wallet so that his happy, smiling face will reassure him whenever he’s feeling down – not that it always works for him.

Now, you’d think that at over five hundred pages, Gazza’s autobiography would simply be too long to be enjoyable – surprisingly, that’s not the case. I’m the first to admit that I’m a bit of a bigot when it comes to books, and I’m quick to judge celebrity novels and autobiographies, but this is actually one of the better ones and it’s just the right length to get the job done without boring you along the way.

Of course, I wouldn’t recommend reading it if you’re not a football fan, because ultimately that’s what it’s all about – this isn’t like the story of a rock ‘n’ roll star, which you can read and be absorbed by whether you’re a fan of their music or not. Gaza is the type of legend who you can only appreciate if you watched his career develop, otherwise he’s just a crazy old man who’s throwing his life away to the demon drink.

It’s tragic really, as the media are all too keen to portray Gazza as a scoundrel who can’t control his emotions. Here, you see a more civilised side to him, you see inside the confused mind of Paul Gascoigne and realise that he’s a person just like us. I think that’s probably why he wanted to release the book in the first place.

 

Paul Gascoigne Quote

Paul Gascoigne Quote

 

Click here to buy Gazza: My Story.

 


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