192 pages paperback
235 x 190 x 13mm
Available in the following languages
(click on cover for enlarged image)
First published as a companion volume to Werewolves, this book provides an accessible overview of the vampire in history, myth, and popular culture.
Vampires have existed in almost every nation and at almost every period of history. Blood has had a magical power, a mystical aura that transcends cultures and the passage of aeons: it represents life. Drinking it has been likened to drinking life itself, and drinking another person's life is said to give the vampire a connection to its victim — and power over them.
The appeal of the vampire is hard to define because it works on so many different levels. First there was the gruesome, shiver-inducing prickling up the spine – we all love a good horror story. Then there was the lure of a seductive, forbidden attraction. And now the vampire is often viewed as a tragic figure – lonely and alone, doomed never to walk in the sunshine.
Many people who feel alienated in an increasingly complicated world see the vampire as a fellow sufferer, a kindred soul isolated from humanity. And, of course, the vampire is a powerful role model for anyone looking to rebel against convention. As well as being sexy and stylish, the vampire represents freedom from rules. He isn't bound by normal conventions.
An extensive review of classic movies and literature, from Count Dracula and St Germain to Louis and Lestat, is complemented by an exploration of the science behind the modern understanding of vampirism – ranging from psychology to the physiology of medical conditions whose symptoms could be mistaken for traits of the traditional vampire.
A wide range of contemporary vampires and their predicaments are also considered: Henry Fitzroy (Blood Ties), Bill Compton (True Blood), Selene (the Underworld trilogy), Edward Cullen (the Twilight series), Mitchell (Being Human), and Angel, amongst many others.
Strictly-speaking, a vampire is just a reanimated dead human who drinks the blood of others to keep 'living'. Yet they are endlessly fascinating: their immense charm, strength, immortality, supernatural abilities and skill in enthralling and fascinating their prey, are all aspects that make them so darkly, deliciously sexy...
The author has also explored many of these themes in her novels in the Haadri cycle. The vourdaki are vampiric night-hunters, allergic to sunlight, with a taste for blood and power. They are introduced in Prime Contact.
Text & design © Ken & Joules Taylor 2010 - 2013