Welcome to the land of shadows, where evil is the greatest power, where nightfall marks the birth of terror, where your very soul is at risk. Join me as I investigate worlds filled with black magic and dark souls and encounter the monsters rule these wicked places.
This review does not represent the opinions of the general public. It reflects my personal thoughts and opinions on the book.
That said, on to the review!
Once upon a time there lived in Hungary a beautiful countess who was heir to a family whose influence and blood extended into many powerful families and even to the crown itself. Now this countess feared the ravages of time upon her beauty so much that she resorted to various exotic, erotic, and immoral means to preserve it, and a devoted childhood friend vowed to find a way--be it mystical or alchemical--to keep her beautiful forever, whether it took him 1 or a hundred years, or even a thousand if need be. Now, in the modern era nearly four hundred years since the countess' death, her descendant is now struggling against the repercussions of a dastardly crime committed, presumably, by himself in modern Hungary. But the only problem is that he claims to be innocent of it! Is he guilty? Or is he simply another victim of his distant ancestress who, after all this time, continues to strive after immortality and immortal beauty?
The Blood Countess is a compelling novel about a true figure in history: Countess Elizabeth Bathory, whose fame lies in the number of virgin maidens she killed so she could bathe in their blood and preserve her beauty. The novel itself is purportedly based on real events and court depositions and notes. Whether you accept them as such or not falls to you to decide. But be ready to get an eyeful...or some such...with this novel. It is mostly likely more than you bargained for.
I'll be honest. I had a great deal of difficulty reading this novel. Vampires are of particular interest to me, and a number of vampire books and novels referred to Elizabeth Bathory in great detail. Reading this novel, however, with its basis in solid fact was a trial in even my determination. I found the transition between the modern era and the earlier century difficult to cope with, even if those changes were clearly separated from one another. I also began skimming through the book because so much attention was paid to places and names and people and history. This was very definitely more biography than a popular novel such as those I prefer to read. However, this book was very detailed in describing the countess', ahem, loves and obsessions. It also provided a great deal of information about such a notorious figure which, if it is accepted as being true, makes her even more horrendous and noteworthy to the reader. I leave it to the reader to decide whether you like it or not, though.
Despite the difficulties, The Blood Countess is a definite must-read for any vampire lover, if only to shed some light on this figure that all these books refer to. A word to the wise, though: there is a great deal of graphic detail in this book! Sexual content is at a very risque high, and it is not solely between men and women, and it is not entirely consensual. So if you pick up this book and read it, remember that I gave you fair warning!
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