Book Review: The Historian

Late one night, exploring her father’s library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters addressed ominously to ‘My dear and  unfortunate successor’. Her discovery plunges her into a world she never dreamed of – a labyrinth where the secrets of her father’s past and her mother’s mysterious fate connect to an evil hidden in the depths of history.

I know what you are thinking, but this is not like your average vampire story. This is nowhere near as clichéd as the Twilight Sagas. In fact, you need to stroll back the years and look further deep into Dracula. Indeed, we are back in the vampiric, modern age of the Dracula. If you love the classic tale of Bram Stoker, then you might as well give this novel an attempt.

The story is told through the eyes of a young girl in search for the disappearance of her father. She travels across Eastern and Southern Europe longing to find the truth about Dracula.

The research Elizabeth Kostova spent on this book is beyond impressive. Kostova spent 10 years writing this book and she probably could have become a travel writer by the end of it all. Perhaps you could even journey through a backpacking adventure across Europe with this novel. If not, then you can very well use your imagination to escape.

As a love for travelling, I liked this book very much. Indeed, with 700 pages, this book is rather long and you do actually feel the prolonged effect. In other words, the pace of this novel is slow. However, I was captivated from the very beginning and was easily satisfied by the end. The Historian is an enjoyable, page turner literature; filled with adventures and historical detail.

An excerpt from The Historian, Chapter 10:

“As an adult, I have often known that peculiar legacy time brings to the traveler: the longing to seek out a place a second time, to find deliberately what we stumbled on once before, to recapture the feeling of discovery. Sometimes we search out again even a place that was not remarkable in itself  – we look for it simply because we remember it. If we do find it, of course, everything is different. The rough-hewn door is still there, but it’s much smaller; the day is cloudy instead of brilliant; it’s spring instead of autumn; we’re alone instead of with three friends. Or, worse, with three friends instead of alone.”

13 thoughts on “Book Review: The Historian

  1. Lovely book review. I picked this book up a couple months ago and read the first few chapters (maybe three). It’s okay so far, do you think it gets better as it progresses? I love history so a lot of history won’t be a problem,

    • Thank you for your comment. I believe it does get better. At times it does slow down, especially the middle. But once you pass that phase, you wouldn’t be able to put the book down. That’s my opinion anyway. Give it another try.

    • I don’t read reviews first, either. It taints the reading. If a book is called “awful,” I will undoubtedly be looking for the awfulness and nothing else. Or I might be sympathetic and only focus on what is good. Either way, it’s a bad business.

  2. This book left me wanting more, so much more, of the back story! Yes, there WAS plenty there…but it puts you in the setting of when her parents met, & I wanted to stay there a while. My favorite part was definately the history. It was nice to get a good vampire book!

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