Dracula myth (?) continued

If you are into vampires, history, or just a well-written adventure, check out The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. This recently published novel is a twenty-first century update of Bram Stoker's Dracula. Following Stoker's original multiple narrative form, contained mostly in written notes, letters, articles, et cetera, Kostova overcomes the malaise of the modern novel's addiction to the third person omniscient narration. Each narrator, and there are probably a dozen, has a distinct voice; she even uses British spelling in the written narration of Professor Bartolomeo Rossi, one of the Queen's subjects. It is this kind of attention to detail that makes reading The Historian such a pleasure.

Part of Kostova's success is due to her use of the historical research of my European history professor Raymond McNally and his partner, Radu Florescu. Their books In Search of Dracula: The History of Dracula and Vampires and Dracula: Prince of Many Faces posit that Vlad the Impaler, a Wallachian prince who defended the borders of Christendom against the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II with excessive cruelty, was in fact the prototype for Dracula, the blood thirsty undead. The Historian uses this scholarly foundation to tell multi-layered story of the search of Vlad's tomb. It is a human tale, populated by flesh and blood characters, blending more than five hundred years of history. This is a thinking man's Dracula.


Anonymous said…
i came across your blog by mistake, actually, but thought would check out a few articles, because i blog too, and like it when people accidently come, read my blog and then either try to bite my head off for writing it, or then praise me...either is fine. anyway, coming to the point. i enjoyed the historian too. loved it, infact. i could feel the terror and the thrill in the book while reading it. loved the way it described the european countryside. i thought it became a little too obvious towards the end, but then, i had enjoyed the journey to the destination so much that I didn't really care as to which tomb it led to...i thought that that was where the book really succeeded
Anonymous said…
Yeah, I agree. I graduated with the major in History and I have to say she did a very great job.

- s u m m e r, BKK, Thailand