Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Release date: 2014
The Blurb: Vlad the Impaler was once the most fearsome ruler in Europe. His armies marched against both Turks and Saxons until his enemies assassinated him. But Vlad Dracula rose from the dead, ready to wrest control of a new kingdom, that of the undead legions of the Night.
To his surprise, he discovered the Undead of Europe to be bestial, scattered, and nearly mindless; more akin to zombies than vampires. So he set out to replace them with a new breed of Undead, borne of his blood and taken from only the finest noble houses. Thus Dracula became the sire not of warriors, but elegant and seductive noblewomen whom no man could resist: Lady Katya, Countess Elizabeth Báthory, Countess Mircalla Karnstein, Lady Lenore, Countess Ulrica Dolingen, and others.
You've read Bram Stoker's “Dracula”. Now see how Dracula assembled the most powerful and famous members of his entourage. As part of THE LEGEND OF DRACULA trilogy, this book contains thirteen short stories about the infamous Count and his seductive children of the Night.
Vampires are scary again!
The review: If I came across as harsh when I reviewed book 1 of Perry Lake’s Dracula series then I have to say that it is because I see much potential within the series and hoped by being constructively critical that I might help the author tap that potential.
I have to say that, as a collection of shorts, this volume held itself together more than the first volume. I think the narrow focus on the various brides helped. Indeed one short section, Immortal Love, was impressive as Lake changed voice and showed to advantage the skill in prose that the author is capable of. That’s not to say that I don’t still think that some of the stories suffer from brevity, they do, but many are fleshed further and has allowed Lake to develop the characters in a much stronger way and some sections felt more like longer prose than shorts, which was positive.
I am still not impressed with the cod-mediaeval dialogue that we occasionally get (much less in this volume I thought) but the author commented on my previous review that they are to stay and that is the author’s prerogative.
The volume explores Carmilla’s background, which was done in an interesting way and it is worth looking at the volume for this section alone. The cornucopia of references and borrowed characters continued apace.
The improved characterisation and the more focused knitted plotlines pushed this ahead of book 1 in my opinion and made it a more satisfying read. 6 out of 10.