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To you, perceptive reader, I bequeath my history....Late one night, exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters. The letters are all addressed to "My dear and unfortunate successor," and they plunge her into a world she never dreamed of-a labyrinth where the secrets of her father's past and her mother's mysterious fate connect to an inconceivable evil hidden in the depths of history.The letters provide links to one of the darkest powers that humanity has ever known-and to a centuries-long quest to find the source of that darkness and wipe it out. It is a quest for the truth about Vlad the Impaler, the medieval ruler whose barbarous reign formed the basis of the legend of Dracula. Generations of historians have risked their reputations, their sanity, and even their lives to learn the truth about Vlad the Impaler and Dracula. Now one young woman must decide whether to take up this quest herself-to follow her father in a hunt that nearly brought him to ruin years ago, when he was a vibrant young scholar and her mother was still alive. What does the legend of Vlad the Impaler have to do with the modern world? Is it possible that the Dracula of myth truly existed-and that he has lived on, century after century, pursuing his own unknowable ends? The answers to these questions cross time and borders, as first the father and then the daughter search for clues, from dusty Ivy League libraries to Istanbul, Budapest, and the depths of Eastern Europe. In city after city, in monasteries and archives, in letters and in secret conversations, the horrible truth emerges about Vlad the Impaler's dark reign-and about a time-defying pact that may have kept his awful work alive down through the ages.Parsing obscure signs and hidden texts, reading codes worked into the fabric of medieval monastic traditions-and evading the unknown adversaries who will go to any lengths to conceal and protect Vlad's ancient powers-one woman comes ever closer to the secret of her own past and a confrontation with the very definition of evil. Elizabeth Kostova's debut novel is an adventure of monumental proportions, a relentless tale that blends fact and fantasy, history and the present, with an assurance that is almost unbearably suspenseful-and utterly unforgettable.
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
This book was recommended to me in an airport bookstore. I had recently finished reading a Dan Brown novel and the clerk told me (correctly) that this novel was written in a similar style and was a great read. He could not have been more right! Very well written (less brain candy, more intellectual than Brown), the suspense builds as story lines merge and there were no lulls to drudge through. This book leaves you checking out the bookstore for more works from Elizabeth Kostova. Definitely a fan!
This is really an engaging tale. Kostova writes with a lot of rich detail that make this a book that stays with you long after you finish it.
Vernon Loved It!!!
This compelling narrative, told from the generational perspectives of a father and daughter, depicts the saga of diverse, yet committed, individuals who are brought together in an perilous journey to find Vlad Tepes III, also know as Dracula. Their journeys, involving three generations of historians, anthropologists and vampire hunters, are devoted to finding precious loved-ones. These journeys intersect in modern times with the finding of the tomb of Dracula, the living dead, still walking the earth after more than five hundred years. The intrigue that pieces together this complex puzzle is a tribute to the intelligence and tenacity of the group that is ultimately responsible for solving the mystery of Vlad Tepes III. The journey passes through multiple political and chronologically diverse cultures and locations; spanning a time frame from 1000 A.D. until present day, and encompassing medieval to present day technologies. A history lesson in its chronology, The Historian provides historical perspective and a fresh look at an ancient horror that has compelled many generations; the story of Dracula, its roots and continuation until today. Enjoy the journey!!!