There is one particular paranormal parasite that just about everyone has heard of, regardless of whether or not they have an interest in the subject. It’s the vampire. For the most part, the image of the vampire has been dictated by popular culture, such as movies, television shows, and novels. The vampire of the past was typically presented in the form of a middle-aged man dressed in a black suit and cloak. Today, though, Hollywood’s vampires are far more likely to resemble a cross between Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson. That the vampire is such an integral part of horror-fiction has led to the assumption that blood-sucking monsters of the night don’t exist outside of the imagination. This is, however, very much at variance with the facts. It’s somewhat ironic that, to understand why the vampire has taken on such an iconic stance, we have to first look at the world of entertainment. There is absolutely no doubt at all that the vampire – as we know it today, at least – would not exist without one particular book. That title is Dracula, which was published in 1897. As we’ll now see, though, Stoker’s classic, gothic novel was certainly not the first work to tell a fear-filled saga of the blood-sucking undead. But, it was definitely the most visible and popular.