Sunday, 1 June 2008


Recently, the author of one of the books that I have written about sent me an e-mail. I think, he basically wanted to say that: OK, if you're after more information on the historical aspects of vampirism, then my book probably will be of little use, but I am sure that my book is (to quote his e-mail) 'pretty good for what it set out to do'.

Returning from a few days away, I found a copy of another book on vampires that I had decided to order: Legends of Blood: The Vampire in History and Myth by Wayne Bartlett and Flavia Idriceanu. Unfortunately, just perusing it for a short while led me to conclude that this too is one of those books that I will gain very little useful from.

Barlett is a management consultant who has worked for some time in Romania and written a number of books on historical topics. Idriceanu is a philologist in Bucharest. Their book is not simply the usual rehash of information on vampires, because they include some chapters on witches and 'the magus', but honestly, I don't get the impression that I will gain much from reading the book. The chapter on 'The Vampire Epidemics' is based on Barber, Frayling, Ronay and a few other well-known authors. In fact, the bibliography is pretty revealing, because it is relatively short and not impressing. It even includes four Harry Potter novels and Tolkien's Lord of the Rings!

No doubt the book is probably a pleasant read for the reader who isn't particularly familiar with the history of vampires, but I feel that my own time is too limited for me to spend a few hours reading this particular book. And I hope that my short posts on books may spare other people from spending time and money on books that may not be worth obtaining if you have an interest in vampires and magia posthuma that is more or less similar to my own.

I did actually find one interesting fact in the bibliography: The book on vampires by Claude Lecouteux has been published in Romania: Vampiri si vampirism. Autopsia unui mit (Bucuresti: Saeculum, 2002).

1 comment:

Anthony Hogg said...

It's amusing to note that the Romanian publishers of Lecouteux's work seem to have ripped off the cover design of Daniel Farson's Mysterious Monsters (1978).

It's probably relevant that Mysterious Monsters incorporated a lot of Farson's 1976 book, Vampires, Zombies, and Monster Men.

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