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The Secret History of Vampires

3.31  ·  Rating Details ·  54 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Garlic cloves and wooden stakes are no match for centuries of the undead's mischief and seduction. Here are thirteen original and imaginative stories that reveal the vampiric truths behind certain historical happenings.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published April 3rd 2007 by DAW (first published 2007)
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Mar 17, 2009 Nozomi rated it it was ok
Shelves: vampire
Being a fan of Carrie Vaughn, her short story A Princess of Spain was the only story I actually read. I also knew the history behind Katherine of Aragon, which probably helped, as I didn't know much about the others. I am really not a short story anthology person; I tried to start the others but they didn't really hold my interest.
Apr 29, 2014 Spiderorchid rated it liked it
As is often the case with anthologies, the theme is interesting but a lot of the stories fail to deliver.

The two best stories - "Under St. Peter's" by Harry Turtledove (a brilliant re-interpretation of the origins of the Christian faith - probably blasphemous so read at your own risk) and Carrie Vaughn's "A Princess of Spain" (about Catherine of Aragorn, for once the main focus of the plot and not just Henry VIII's first wife) - have since been republished in other anthologies (By Blood we live
May 29, 2015 Sarah rated it really liked it
This book of vampire short stories set in the past was better than the silly cover would indicate.All of these stories concerned historical figures. We have a vampire Jesus imprisoned in the depths of the Vatican, Teddy Roosevelt versus a vampire crime lord, Dueling vampires Lenin and Stalin(One of the weaker stories), a vampire cult in 1940s Hollywood, an encounter between Houdini And a vampire, vampires in the court of Catherine of Aragon and the young prince George. Another one was set in Egy ...more
Kristen Darienzo
Apr 18, 2017 Kristen Darienzo rated it liked it
Shelves: vampires
"Did he even have a spirit anymore? Or was he all body, all hunger, all appetite? He didn’t know. He didn’t much care, either."

With this 13 story anthology, we see a lot of different author's takes on vampires throughout "history." Not all of them are as enthralling as others, some are boring or seems forced, but the few that are good, are really good.

"Under St. Peter's" by Harry Turtledove was so good, I read it twice in a row. If you're very religious, this might be blasphemous for you, so I'd
Oct 26, 2008 Andrea rated it did not like it
I think this book of short stories had potential describing some really interesting ways vampires have influenced history behind the scenes. However, it just didn't live up to that potential. The stories were dull and unexciting. (I mean - how can you make vampires unexciting?) Some of them seemed like the authors were trying to hard to be creative but just weren't (like the short story written in poet form like the Iliad). The stories that did have potential to really be interesting reads (was ...more
It was a good anthology. There were more than a few above average stories, which isn't always true for an anthology. I particularly enjoyed Harry Turtledove's story.
Justyn Kyle
May 29, 2014 Justyn Kyle rated it liked it
The Princess of Spain by Carrie Vaughn...3 stars
Nov 15, 2009 Rebekah rated it it was amazing
Great collection of short stories. Loved the idea of a French Succubus killing Prince Arthur.
Crymsyn Hart
Jul 22, 2012 Crymsyn Hart rated it liked it
The book was okay. I appreciate anthologies and some of the stories were great. Others not so much. It's neat how the alternative history and vampires comes into play though.
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Darrell Schweitzer is an American writer, editor, and essayist in the field of speculative fiction. Much of his focus has been on dark fantasy and horror, although he does also work in science fiction and fantasy.

Schweitzer is also a prolific writer of literary criticism and editor of collections of essays on various writers within his preferred genres.
More about Darrell Schweitzer...

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