Dracula by Bram Stoker
The first chapter of this book, made me want to put it down, but I am so glad I powered through. What a fantastic story! I loved it!
There are quite a few chapters towards the beginning that drag and add little to the story, but that is the only downside. The characters are well developed and easy to relate to despite the different lifestyle. The story was captivating and scary. Dracula was frightening even though he was not even in half the book.
Van Helsing was a rough and tumble hero without fitting the stereotype. As an older gentleman who was a scholar and not athletic, he had a way of evoking a sense of security and trust with everyone he met. He didn't even kill Dracula, he was just watching from a distance, protecting Mina. But all of the characters instantly loved and trusted everything he said, and Stoker made me feel the same.
What a great book!