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Vlad the Impaler: A Life From Beginning to End

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  684 ratings  ·  83 reviews
Vlad the Impaler
The character Count Dracula is well-known throughout the world. He is a dark, seductive, pale man wearing a cape. His gaze is quite literally captivating, and he has the strength of ten men. The story, written by Bram Stoker in 1897, has been retold hundreds of times, but is there a historical figure upon whom the character is based? Is there really a Dr
Kindle Edition, 48 pages
Published October 2nd 2016 by Hourly History
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Average rating 3.64  · 
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 ·  684 ratings  ·  83 reviews

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Nov 19, 2019 rated it liked it
2.5 stars
Stephanie (Bookfever)
"There is no doubt that Vlad III Dracula made his mark on history. He was a harsh ruler and a cruel adversary, but it is also true that he was a gifted strategist. He was also, at times, an honorable ally."

To be honest, there wasn't much in this book that I didn't already know about Vlad the Impaler (also known as Vlad III, Vlad Tepes and Vlad Dracula.) But luckily that didn't take away any enjoyment in this book as I love reading about this controversial person in history. The few things I
Anca Zelenca
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
A piece of romanian history

I've enjoyed this book about Vlad the Impaler. It describes a small part of romanian history. In my opinion is about honor and bravery, about alliances and treasons, about war and cruelty. Those were harsh times, and who knows how would this world look like today if things would have happened differently?
I've liked the way the book is structured and that it draws a clear line between true facts and fiction. Where possible, I would have liked to see more common names i
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Vlad the Impaler: A Life From Beginning to End by Hourly History
I enjoy reading the Hourly History books when I need a quick read between non-fiction books.
In real life He seems scarier than the character Dracula by Bram Stoker.
When I read the reasons for impaling and how it was done it scared the crap out of me.

Scrivener Bat
Jul 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
While lighter in detail than many articles I've read about good ol' Vladislav, this book does offer a decent overview of his life and legacy (especially for a book that co$t me nothing) and even had a few little factoids I hadn't seen elsewhere nestled in the text. ...more
2.5 stars actually, I think.

It was concise and quick which is, I guess, what you’d expect from a book with “Hourly History” anywhere. I’m glad it was free. I didn’t learn anything new, but you might if you’re unfamiliar with the historical figure. I would suggest having a map of Romania on-hand and/or a pronunciation guide if you’re unfamiliar with the language. (That said, it’s just people names and place names so you might not need it unless you sound things out in your brain.)
Raven Lancaster
Jun 18, 2019 rated it did not like it
Poorly written

This book didn't tell me a single detail I didn't learn in a documentary on the History channel over twenty years ago. I guess this is a book for someone who knows nothing about the man. However, I give it one star because it felt like each chapter was written by a different person and no editor bothered to read it before just slapping it all together and calling it a book. The chapters were quite redundant to the point of being annoying. Overall it was quite disappointing.
Diego Feliu
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I want to start this review by saying that before reading this historical book about Vlad the Impaler, I also first read the Hourly History book about the Byzantine Empire and then read the one about the Ottoman Empire but only until the chapter that culminated in the conquest of Constantinople before pausing that and jumping into this book immediately. The main reason for that is that I wanted to better understand the history of the region and major figures that would be around during Vlad the ...more
Thom Swennes
Jun 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: free-e-book
The Balkans, a region lying northwest of Turkey, chiefly containing the countries of Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria has always been a hotbed of conflict. It was here in on June 28, 1914, in the city of Sarajevo that the Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated, eventually leading to the First World War. In later years, when the Communist dictator Josip Broz Tito died, Yugoslavia was soon cast into a civil war, divided by ethnic lines. This region and its peoples have a long history o ...more
Carolina Casas
Jul 27, 2020 rated it liked it

If you are looking for a quick summary of his life, look somewhere else. It is a good way to pass thirty minutes of your time. Like other intros, it starts off good but unlike those, it ends up being a sensationalist. instead of dispelling the legends and myths surrounding Vlad III, this short book spends the last chapters, including the conclusion, giving some credibility to the more outrageous parts of Vlad's story.
There are plenty of efforts of excusing his enemies. Not so much this bru
RA Ratterman
Sep 29, 2018 rated it liked it
A short-and-sweet historical overview filled with interesting details and information. Read for personal research. I found this book's contents helpful and inspiring.
Overall, a good book for the researcher and enthusiast.
Non-Spoiler Excerpts:
"Unlike his fictitious counterpart, who is often portrayed as tall and handsome, Vlad III Dracula was described as a short man who was stocky and strong. He was said to have a long, straight nose, a thin face, and green eyes with bushy, menacing eyebrows. He
Sarah Crawford
Jul 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Vlad Tepes, ruler of Wallachia three times. Cruel beyond belief. Fighter against the Ottoman invaders and therefore beloved by some of his people. Vastly outnumber by the invaders, prisoner, free man, murderer.

Birth date unknown. Birth mother unknown. Exactly where born unknown.

Those who were enemies of any kind could find themselves impaled on poles that were made somewhat dull on purpose. This method resulted in the death of some 40,000 to 100,000 people. Used biological warfare. Set people on
Repetitive. And way too rushed. If you know nothing about the history of this era, you're screwed. Too many names thrown out at you with no background. Too many geographical locations with no mention of where each is. Too many Vlads and you should stick to one name for each, not use a different name for each Vlad each time. Luckily, I'm pretty well versed in this era or I would've been completely lost.

Guess I won't be reading any other Hourly History shorts. Sad, because that's a great concept.
Miguel Arvelo
Oct 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, history, 2020
Oftentimes reality is better than fiction... HH's summary of Vlad III Dracula, the Impaler Lord is one such case

Wether a fan of Bram Stoker's novel, the Japanese manga Helsing, the video game franchise Castlevania or just vampire lore in general we are in one way or another with the historical character of Vlad the Impaler. Hourly History captured the highlights of this historical figure and produced an intriguing and easy to read summary that allows the reader to have a good idea of who Vlad Te
Jasmine Davis
3 stars

The first two chapters were meh... Kind of boring, however by chapter three, I was all in. Solid book, I did not know of all of the atrocities committed by Vlad the Impaler, nor did I know that Dracula may have been based in an actual person. I did not like that so much information was missing/ unknown. I also did not like how the first two chapters seemed so crammed with information that it did not seem to flow. I am looking forward to reading the other short stories and see how they com
Anthony Calisto
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Good Book With A Broad Overview

This book is very well written and provides a decent overview of the history of Vlad as well as its implications in modern culture. The only issue I had was there seemed to be a few holes here and there were it almost seemed like events between dates were lost or muddled but I believe that is more due to the sources being difficult to find or read and not on the author's part. Good stepping stone to learning about the man.
Steve Stred
Oct 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a really well laid out non-fiction book detailing the life of Vlad Dracula. It discusses his rise to power, family lineage, victories and defeats in war and the mythology surrounding both his reported methods of killing as well as how much he influenced Bram Stoker's book.

It was an easy to read book, annotations backing up statements which lent further credibility to Vlad's history. Would recommend!
Alyssa Klinger
Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing

I don't know why Vlad Impaler Lord fascinates me so much. It frightens me a little bit to think of how he killed individuals regardless of how violent it was back in the mid to late 1400s. Even though this figure of history gives me the creeps, it is definitely tough not to pick up and read a novel about him. This is not the first book I've read about Vlad the Impaler and I can more then guarantee it won't be my last.
Jan 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: history, biography
Like all of the Hourly Histories, this volume was informative and brief; However, much of the information was redundant, making it longer than necessary. It seemed to me that the author felt a need to generate a specified number of pages whether he had the content or not. I will still read every Hourly History I can get!
Shaun Heuston
Mar 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Well written paper!

This is an excellent synopsis of the life and times of Vlad III. When I was reading of Vlad's alliance with Stephen Bathory, I was hoping that it would mention in correlation to vampyrism that Stephen Bathory's wife was Elizabeth Bathory the so-called "Blood Countess", whose story rivals Dracula's.
Sep 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great for Beginners

A decent introduction to Vlad III Dracula, with added comparisons between the man and the character in Stokers' novel. Personally, added information on his childhood or family life would have been delightful (if these accounts are available). Otherwise, great references and info for the non-initiated. Thanks for the free read!
Adri G.M.
Dec 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Vampires are hold upon one of the most popular main characters of modern stories, but while learning the beginning of the myth, I wonder why. Even though a lot of this man's atrocities are hearsay, they are enough to chill me to the bone. He was a psychopath!
Then again, I liked the recount of the facts made by this book, which tries to avoid gossip and focuses on historical occurrances.
Ed Barton
Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Hero, Devil, Saint and Prince

Vlad III of Walachia is a complex historical figure, and this quick read brings him and his three time reign back to life... figuratively of course. Covering known history, literature and myth, the story covers the historical Vlad bad well as the Dracula mythos. A good read.
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An easy way to learn a lot quickly and enjoy it too. This hourly history release is particularly good and has come in handy during many pub quizzes now :) I enjoy that its a fairly balanced account - a historical narrative setting things within their context as opposed to a modern day judgement of Vlads life in the medieval times. A man who was fascinating and horrific.
Shamsher Singh
Oct 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A spine-chilling read.

The book presents a typical example of a person who faced adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), in conglomeration with the ignorant mediaeval European society of those times and ended up being the feared beast whose atrocities he at once was himself critical of !
Nov 28, 2020 rated it liked it
This man was sick. I think in many instances he was trying to protect his people during dark times. But I think you have to be depraved to torture and kill others as he did. A lot of Eastern European names and history made it a little hard for me to follow casually. I was most interested in the facets of his life that I could relate to modern myth and lore that I've seen or read about. ...more
Marius-Cristian Sava
Average documentation regarding the Romanian ruler.
Historical data show that these types of behavior were widespread in the Middle Ages. Only excessive media coverage to defame led to the creation of a negative opinion in Western Europe related to Vlad Țepeș. The same type of negative propaganda was used in the case of Romanian ruler Michael the Brave by the same European royal courts.
David Cuatt
Feb 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
If you're looking for a concise and well written overview of this colorful and controversial historical figure, this book is a great pick. Although it's short enough to be read in an evening, it lives up to it's promise of covering the life of the infamous Vlad, his family, the politics of his era, and it even gets into some of the vampire myth. ...more
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good quick overview

I thought the information was helpful, especially because I was looking for a quick informative history about Glad the Impaled. It kept me interested and met my expectations.
Julian Orozco, Jr.
Jun 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Violent Vlad

I really liked this book. Refreshed my memory of what I knew already and informed of new information I did not know about. Very interesting, kept my enthusiasm going. Good read.
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