Anno Dracula

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Anno Dracula
Kim Newman - Anno Dracula.jpeg
Author Kim Newman
Country United States
Language English
Series Anno Dracula series
Genre Alternate history, Horror novel
Publisher Simon & Schuster
Publication date
1992
Media type Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Pages 409 pp (paperback)
ISBN ISBN 978-0-380-72345-4
OCLC 31220886
Preceded by First book in the series
Followed by The Bloody Red Baron

Anno Dracula is a 1992 novel by British writer Kim Newman, the first in the Anno Dracula series. It is an alternate history using 19th-century English historical settings and personalities, along with characters from popular fiction. The interplay between humans who have chosen to "turn" into vampires and those who are "warm" (humans) is the backdrop for the plot which tracks Jack the Ripper's politically charged destruction of vampire prostitutes. The reader is alternately and sympathetically introduced to various points of view. The main characters are Jack the Ripper, and his hunters Charles Beauregard (an agent of the Diogenes Club), and Geneviève Dieudonné, a senior vampire.

Plot[edit]

In this world, Count Dracula has killed Van Helsing- an injury sustained to Doctor John Seward's hand during a fight with Renfield resulted in the group lacking the men to drive Dracula away from Mina Harker, resulting in Dracula killing Quincey Morris and Jonathan Harker before escaping with Mina. With no one to oppose him, Dracula turns Mina into a vampire, adding her to his collection of brides, and proceeds to spread his vampire curse creating thousands of undead throughout England. He soon marries Queen Victoria, ushering in a period of increasing British vampire domination. Dracula is well-advanced in imposing a police state on Great Britain, where dissenters may be jailed or impaled without trial.

Dieudonné has come down in the world, attending sick vampires in a clinic run by a doctor with a shady past. When a prostitute is murdered, Scotland Yard turns to them for an opinion. In the meantime Beauregard's social marriage preparations are interrupted by a summons to the mysterious Diogenes Club, which represents the crown in matters that cannot be made public. There, he is charged with finding Jack the Ripper. At the inquest for the recently destroyed vampire prostitute, Dieudonné and Beauregard appear, with Lestrade from Scotland Yard, and Dr. Jekyll. Each sets out independently, with differing agendas.

Beauregard is abducted by an old enemy, a Tong leader who calls a truce on the understanding that Beauregard will collaborate in finding the killer. This precludes the Ripper being a member of organized crime, and periodically gives Beauregard inside information. Dieudonné stops at a pub, where she encounters the elite of Carpathian riff-raff which Dracula brought to London to control the locals. She confronts one bully, and, being the elder vampire, soundly bests him. Jack Seward, the physician at Dieudonné's clinic, recalls the early days of Dracula in London, before the signs of vampirism were recognized.

As the demands of the Diogenes Club have first priority, a rift opens between Beauregard and his fiancee. Her fascination with social climbing is revealed: "Only vampires get anywhere, Charles." The intimates of Dracula discuss their continued takeover of the government, and set their own man to find Jack the Ripper: The destruction of the vampire prostitutes is drawing unwanted support for an anti-vampire Christian group. Seward becomes lustfully entangled with a "new born" vampire.

Jack the Ripper strikes twice, failing to destroy one, who is brought to the clinic. The prostitute is a vampire of Dracula's line — a contaminated bloodline, from Dieudonné's perspective. It imperfectly changes shape, leaping at Seward as it dies. Trusting their associates, the implication is lost on Dieudonné and Beauregard. Seward notes the growing public hysteria, and reflects "I meant to destroy a monster, not become one."

Beauregard and Dieudonné, having similar ideas, become closer, while his fiancée is increasingly annoyed at his lack of attention. Reporting to the Diogenes, Beauregard is puzzled that his meager progress is satisfactory. Leaving, he becomes entangled in an anti-vampire riot, however he is saved by one of the few vampires at the club, Sergeant Dravot. Beauregard's impatient fiancée becomes a vampire by one of Dracula's men. In her arrogance, the conversion does not go well, and she is barely able to reach the safety of her house. Beauregard and Dieudonné take her in care, Dieudonné observing, without being complimentary, that she may eventually become a strong vampire.

Riots escalate, symbols of rebellion are being painted throughout London. An anti-vampire leader is shot, and one of Dracula's henchmen is destroyed, both perhaps by the same mysterious vampire. The ruling vampires react decisively. A large number of prominent people are to be imprisoned and treated ruthlessly, including George Bernard Shaw, Lewis Carroll, and W. S. Gilbert. Seward becomes increasingly infatuated with his vampire lover, having trouble distinguishing her now from the murdered Lucy. In Dravot, Dracula's henchmen Godalming believes he has found Jack the Ripper; he is pursuing him when he is destroyed by an old friend who he betrayed by becoming a vampire: Seward.

Beauregard and Dieudonné finally realize that Seward is Jack the Ripper. They race to him, finding he has destroyed his vampire lover. As they leave with him in custody, they encounter Dravot, and the destroyed body of Godalming. Seward is murdered, but then Dravot produces a fabricated story about what happened: that there were two Rippers. Bemused, Beauregard realizes that he has been used as a tool of the Diogenes Club. However he and Dieudonné, by now having become lovers, are to be recognized by the queen for their work. The story concludes with a confrontation between Beauregard, Dieudonné, the queen, and Dracula, where Beauregard tosses a silver knife to Queen Victoria; knowing that he cannot kill Dracula in direct combat, Beauregard provides Victoria with a means of killing herself, thus depriving Dracula of the right to legally rule Britain and forcing him to flee the country.

Characters from fiction[edit]

Characters are listed here. Those with more than a passing role are starred. Due to the historical period, many are from works in the public domain.

Character Origin
Adam Adamant Adam Adamant Lives!
Baron Meinster The Brides of Dracula
Kurt Barlow 'Salem's Lot
Brides of Dracula Dracula
Sir Danvers Carew The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
Carnacki Carnacki, the Ghost-Finder
Barnabas Collins Dark Shadows
Count Dracula* Dracula
Daniel Dravot* The Man Who Would Be King
Gunga Din Gunga Din
Soames Forsyte The Forsyte Saga
Fu Manchu (referred to as 'The Celestial') The Mystery of Dr. Fu-Manchu
Griffin The Invisible Man
Basil Hallward The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mina Harker Dracula
Mycroft Holmes* The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes A Study in Scarlet
Elder Chinese Vampire Mr. Vampire
Doctor Henry Jekyll and Edward Hyde Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
Carmilla Karnstein Carmilla
Kostaki The Pale Lady
Inspector Lestrade* A Study in Scarlet
Lestat de Lioncourt Interview With The Vampire
Macheath The Threepenny Opera
Prince Mamuwalde Blacula
Admiral Sir Mandeville Messervy (presumed ancestor of Admiral Sir Miles Messervy) Original
Sebastian Moran The Return of Sherlock Holmes
Doctor Moreau The Island of Doctor Moreau
Professor Moriarty The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
The Murgatroyds Ruddigore
Count Orlok Nosferatu
Allan Quatermain King Solomon's Mines
Rupert of Hentzau The Prisoner of Zenda
Lord Ruthven* The Vampyre
Kate Reed Early draft of Dracula
John Reid The Lone Ranger
John Seward Dracula
Bill Sikes Oliver Twist
Sir Francis Varney Varney the Vampire
Count Von Krolock The Fearless Vampire Killers
Count Yorga Count Yorga, Vampire
Carl Kolchak The Night Stalker
Waverly (presumed ancestor of Alexander Waverly) Original
A. J. Raffles The Amateur Cracksman
Doctor Antonio Nikola A Bid for Fortune: or, Dr Nikola's Vendetta
Clayton The Hound of the Baskervilles
Lord John Roxton The Lost World
Arthur Holmwood Dracula
Lucy Westenra Dracula
Abraham Van Helsing Dracula
Renfield Dracula
Jonathan Harker Dracula
Quincey Morris Dracula
Lulu Schon Pandora's Box
Geneviève Dieudonné* Drachenfels
Chandagnac Drachenfels
The Old Jago A Child of the Jago
Ivan Dragomiloff The Assassination Bureau, Ltd
Countess Geschwitz Pandora's Box
Melissa d'Acques Drachenfels
Count Brastov The Soft Whisper of the Dead
Prince Conrad Vulkan They Thirst
Don Sebastian de Villanueva The Black Castle
Edward Weyland The Vampire Tapestry
Baron Karnstein Carmilla
Lady Adelina Ducayne Good Lady Ducayne'
Sarah Kenyon The Tomb of Sarah
Ethelind Fionguala Ken's Mystery
Countess Dolingen Dracula's Guest and Other Weird Stories
The Amahagger She: A History of Adventure
Ezzelin von Klatka The Mysterious Stranger
Count Vardalek The True Story of a Vampire
Madame de la Rougierre Uncle Silas
Clarimonde La Morte Amoureuse
Martin Hewitt Martin Hewitt, Investigator
Max Carrados Max Carrados
Augustus Van Dusen The Thinking Machine
Cotford Early draft of Dracula
Mrs. Warren Mrs. Warren's Profession
Inspector Mackenzie The Amateur Cracksman
Berserker the Dog Dracula
The Wurdalak Black Sabbath
Louis Bauer Gas Light
Edward Malone The Adventure of the Grinder's Whistle
A Wessex Cup Winner The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
Mrs. Amworth Mrs. Amworth
Henry Wilcox Howards End
General Zaroff The Most Dangerous Game
Lucian de Terre The Werewolves of London
Count Mitterhouse Vampire Circus
Armand Tesla The Return of the Vampire
Count Duval El Vampiro
Countess Marya Zaleska Dracula's Daughter
Asa Vajda Black Sunday
Martin Cuda Martin
Anthony The Night Stalker
Caleb Croft Grave of the Vampire
Dr. Ravna The Kiss of the Vampire
Dr. Callistratus Blood of the Vampire

Historical people mentioned or appearing as characters[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

From the book cover: "The most comprehensive, brilliant, dazzlingly audacious vampire novel to date." (Locus); "A tour de fource which succeeds brilliantly." (The Times); "A marvellous marriage of political satire, melodramatic intrigue, gothic horror, and alternative history." (The Independent).

Sequel[edit]

The Bloody Red Baron, the sequel to Anno Dracula, was published in 1995.