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By Pietro Perconti

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Dracula, which he had outlined as early as 1890 and published in 1897. (p. 10) Furthermore, Hopkins and Johnson comment that this insubstantial romance reveals Stoker’s interest in international politics, suggesting meat beneath the fluff. There is no reason to summon supernatural monsters or human villains when the real world poses its own threats. Shasta, to return to Roth’s definition, is definitely a romance that involves the forming of couples and concludes with the anticipated marriage of its youthful heroine.

49 Dalby’s ‘Bibliographical Note’ explains its rarity by noting that it ‘was issued as an ephemeral delicate paperback’ (p. 7) and not intended to last. Bruce Wightman, who edited the reprinted edition, comments that it is not typical of Stoker:‘First, aside from references to . . Manfred, with its witches and spirits, and the stage device known as the star trap, often employed for demon entrances, there is no supernatural catalyst within this collection’ (p. 9). Indeed, Wightman’s introduction focuses on roman-à-clef elements, emphasizes the truthfulness of the stories and notes that the storytellers are ‘disguised portraits of those theatricals the author worked and toured with’ (p.

56 Four stories from Dracula’s Guest that have not been discussed so far are ‘The Gypsy Prophecy’,‘The Coming of Abel Behena’,‘The Burial of the Rats’ and ‘Dracula’s Guest’. 57 The superstitious Mary blunts the household knives, but Mary is injured when she falls on a knife Joshua’s brother has sent him from India. The story never mentions second sight, but here as elsewhere, Stoker suggests forces more powerful than science and brings that mystery into the heart of the modern world. 58 In The Shadow of Dracula, Murray notes that it is set in a real place, a small fishing village ‘on the west coast of Cornwall, which he discovered .

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