Purporting to be the truth behind the highly edited falsehoods published as the classic novel DRACULA by Bram Stoker, DRAKULYA uses the events, even the words of DRACULA to tell a more frightening and sinister tale. Here Dracula is not Vlad but his brother Mircea; Von Helsing (not Van Helsing, Von Helsing) is researching a disease that will cure all other diseases (but at what cost?); and Jonathan Harker is an amalgam of himself and ... Drakulya.
Readers who have more than a passing familiarity with DRACULA may find DRAKULYA a confusing read. Many of John Seward's journal entries have become the words of Mina Harker, now Von Helsing's loyal assistant. Also complicating reading of this book is its sheer density of reference. Reflecting the author's twenty years of research and writing, DRAKULYA is at times literarily allusive to the point of ponderousness. Hints and symbols that imply connections between characters give the novel its shape; the fibers that bind character to character form narrative threads almost incidentally.
DRAKULYA is literature rather than storytelling, at best a work for the brain rather than the heart, and often truly WORK to interpret. Scholars who feel that DRACULA has never received the artistic-critical attention that it deserves may consider Earl W. Lee's novel long overdue. For an entertaining retelling of DRACULA, however, THE DRACULA TAPE by Fred Saberhagen is a better choice.