by Jeanne Kalogridis
Series: Diaries of the Family Dracul, Book 1
Publication Date: September 1, 1995
Arkady Tsepesh has returned to his childhood home to Transylvania with his pregnant wife Mary to take the place of his deceased father as the caretaker to his eccentric uncle, Prince Vlad. Arkady decides to begin writing a journal to record the painful days ahead and to also remember his father. The only other family member left is his older sister, Zsuzsanna, who was born crippled. Unfortunately the Tespesh family is plagued by madness, tragedy and children born deformed or dying young.
Once back at the family home, Mary notices strange things about Arkady’s uncle. He doesn’t eat or drink. He also pays too much attention to Zsuzsanna than Mary is comfortable with. Mary is warned by her servant, Masika, to get away before it is too late. She witnesses many things that have her scared to death and she can’t seem to get through to Arkady what a monster his uncle is.
Things are about to become worse because Prince Vlad has broken the covenant and the peasants know if he is already preying on his family that they will be next. Arkady feels the madness descending upon him. He starts seeing his older brother, Stefan, who was mauled by their family dog when Arkady was five. He thinks that Stefan is trying to tell him something but he can’t seem to figure it out.
The entire story is told through diary entries of Arkady, Mary and Zsuzsanna. A very dark, intense read. It isn’t for the faint of heart because there is graphic scenes involving incest and necrophilia that had me cringing.
Rating: 3 STARS
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*Book was personally bought by me.
**Read as part of 2011 TBR Challenge