Every few years, a new generation discovers vampires, adds a few twists to the old legends and falls in love with the undead all over again.
When I was a kid, watching “Fright Night” movies on Saturday nights, Bela Lugosi was the vampire to fear. The black and white film “Dracula” was based on the 1897 novel by Bram Stoker.
Who can forget that cheesy accent when the Count says, “Listen to them. Children of the night. What music they make.”
Or “I never drink ... wine.”
Or Mina’s account of the night Dracula visited her in her room: “I heard dogs howling. And when the dream came, it seemed the whole room was filled with mist. It was so thick, I could just see the lamp by the bed, a tiny spark in the fog. And then I saw two red eyes glaring at me. And a white livid face came down out of the mist. It came closer and closer. I felt its breath on my face and then its lips ....”
Scary stuff that.
These days the world’s most famous vampire – Edward of the Twilight series – talks about Googling and says sweet things like “I hate you for making me want you so much.”
But enough about them. For every vampire, good or bad, there must be a vampire hunter. Van Helsing (and didn’t you love Hugh Jackman in that movie) is the most famous with his knowledge of undead blasters like garlic, holy water, wooden stakes and a silver cross.
Van Helsing’s fame is about to be overshadowed by another – and you won’t believe this – our one and only Abraham Lincoln.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is a new book by Seth Grahame-Smith that, according to the Amazon Web site, will be released March 2.
This novel – and it is a novel idea – purports that Abe’s mother died in 1818, not due to milk sickness, but because of a vampiric attack.
Young Lincoln learned the truth and wrote in his secret journal: “henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose...”
“Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, Abe sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.”
You’ll be astonished at the hidden history behind the Civil War and the slave trade. You’ll see vintage photographs of alleged vampiric activity.
Grahame-Smith has butchered other works of literature to great success including Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Elizabeth and Darcy enter zombie warfare) and Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters.
PPZ hit the New York Times bestseller charts thanks to such lines as: “It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains.”
Grahame-Smith is said to be receiving $575,000 for a two-book deal and a movie could be in the works.
Which leads to a final quote from Dracula:
Martin: They’re all crazy. They’re all crazy except you and me. Sometimes I have my doubts about you.