I initially hesitated to buy this book. When I first saw it in a secondhand bookstore I picked it off the shelf right away, thanks to its attractive cover, flipped through its papery-musty pages and nearly took it to the cash register before I began to vacillate, poring over whether I’m really at that stage where carrying around a vampire novel would cause embarrassment. For some minutes I thought it through like it was the most urgent of philosophical questions. Then I said, “Alright. Fuck it. I’m doing it. I’m delving again into my teen’s fiction,” that is, back into my Bram Stoker/Anne Rice era. After all, this moderately fat book was a welcome addition to my small but growing new shelf. But after deciding to just buy it anyway, I had the problem of not being able to begin. I think I was put off by its thickness (over 700 pages) and the rather minuscule print. A bit of research told me that it took Elizabeth Kostova over 10 years to finish writing this mammoth of a book and I thought that it would take me roughly the same amount of time to finish reading it too.
Now, you might be reading this post because you’re keen on reading vampire fiction, or because you’ve read Anne Rice’s entire The Vampire Chronicles saga and scoured bookstores, in vain, for something of nearly the same caliber, or because you fancy yourself to be some type of Goth, and not just any Goth, but that particularly melancholic breed of 90s Goths that still dreams up entire worlds that involve vampires. As an ex-member of this breed myself, I can’t possibly reiterate enough that despite even the bloodsucker stereotype has altered somewhat since Bela Lugosi, vampires today are as real as a cliché and that the reading public has been glutted with these sexy ass pale bloodsucking fashionable weirdos there’s virtually nothing new to them.