Vampire of the Mists (Ravenloft Books)

Vampire of the Mists (Ravenloft Books) - Christie Golden This one pretty much fit in my mood to read a decent vampire tale, and I mean real vampires, not the b.s. sparkling variety. This is as "old school" as it gets: the garlic, the vampire has to be invited to walk into a house, so on. You know, the way vampires are supposed to be. I had read this book a years ago, and I had forgotten about it. It was kind of neat getting to reread it now. Jander Sunstar is a gold elf; he also happens to be a 500 year old vampire who finds himself in the horror realm of Ravenloft. He ends up the unwilling guest of the local lord, Count Strahd, who is also a vampire. Jander fell in love with a mad woman, and he eventually discovers there is a link between her and Strahd. Personally, the elf as a vampire angle was one that I found interesting, since it is rare to have vampires in literature who are not humans. I noticed some reviewers here complain that time passes, or that Jander needs a lot of time (about 50 years) to figure out the link to Strahd, but they are vampires. As the author writes at the end, what is time to a vampire? I found that made the novel seem a bit more "authentic." Decades are nothing to a vampire. Strahd and Jander are different vampires; Strahd embraces his evil nature while Jander is tormented by it. The story is a bit lengthy, but this is the first book in the Ravenloft series. So you are getting a lot of the background of the realm as well. The good news for readers is that the novels stand on their own. You can pick them up in any order. Overall, this is a light escapist novel. It is gothic horror, which means it is not heavy on the gore. The story moves along pretty well, and it is overall an entertaining read. Some readers may complain of cliches, for example, the gypsies, but that is part of what makes a novel like this fun to read. And it may make you want to go back and read a classic like Dracula. It certainly is better than a lot of the dreck that passes for vampire and horror fiction these days.