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The Dead Travel Fast by Deanna Raybourn
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Mar 01, 11

bookshelves: 2011booksread
Read in March, 2011

I've read this author's other Victorian series of romance-mysteries, but I enjoyed this book more. It's a book that plays with the Dracula story without ever actually discussing Dracula. The heroine, Theodora, visits Transylvania to stay with a school friend. She stays at the castle home of the Dragulescu family and quickly becomes infatuated with the recently inherited Count Andrei Dragulescu. Naturally there are lots of spooky folk beliefs and legends and then a mysterious death. The author does a really great job of maintaining suspense throughout the novel. You're never really sure, and neither is the heroine, if vampires do exist in this world, and if so, who they are. What's more, the vampires presented in this book stick close to their roots and there is some real horror and fear here, unlike most books that deal with vampires these days. The heroine is very likeable, a nonconformist for the 19th century, but more so than the main character in the author's other books, actually believably in period for me. She wants to support herself with her fiction writing and is looking for exotic inspiration in the Translyvanian castle and its residents. The Count is a typical mysterious-but-attractive-in-a-dangerous-way type, but since I have a weakness for the type, I enjoyed him. I had a little problem with the romance because of the "I was a bad seducer who never cared about the thousands of women he slept with until I met you" cliche. But the rest of the book was so enjoyable and readable that I was willing to forgive it. It kept me up reading until 3AM last night, so obviously it was doing quite a few things right.
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