An "essential examination" (New York Times Book Review), this revelatory biography exhumes the haunted origins of the man behind the immortal myth.
In this "sumptuous" (Publishers Weekly) portrait of the man who birthed an undying cultural icon, David J. Skal "pulls back the curtain to reveal the author who dreamed up this vampire" (Time). "A fascinating character whose own anxieties and obsessions . . . were perfectly in tune with his late Victorian era" (Boston Globe), Stoker's infirm childhood unfolds against a tableau of Victorian medical mysteries and horrors: cholera and famine fever, childhood opium abuse, frantic bloodletting, mesmeric quack cures, and the gnawing obsession with “bad blood” that pervades Dracula. Stoker's ambiguous sexuality is explored through his passionate youthful correspondence with Walt Whitman, his adoration of the actor Sir Henry Irving, and his romantic rivalry with lifelong acquaintance Oscar Wilde—here portrayed as a stranger-than-fiction doppelgänger. Recalling the psychosexual contours of Stoker's life and art in splendidly gothic detail, Something in the Blood is "a keepsake for any Dracula enthusiast" (Seattle Times) and the definitive biography for years to come. 16 pages of color and 80 black-and-white illustrations