Monday, January 17, 2011

Review: The Secret History of Elizabeth Tudor, Vampire Slayer


Sovereign Power. Eternal Pleasure.

Revealed at last in this new vampire saga for the ages: the true, untold story of the “Virgin Queen” and her secret war against the Vampire King of England. . . .On the eve of her coronation, Elizabeth Tudor is summoned to the tomb of her mother, Anne Boleyn, to learn the truth about her bloodline—and her destiny as a Slayer. Born to battle the bloodsucking fiends who ravage the night, and sworn to defend her beloved realm against all enemies, Elizabeth soon finds herself stalked by the most dangerous and seductive vampire of all.
He is Mordred, bastard son of King Arthur, who sold his soul to destroy his father. After centuries in hiding, he has arisen determined to claim the young Elizabeth as his Queen. Luring her into his world of eternal night, Mordred tempts Elizabeth with the promise of everlasting youth and beauty, and vows to protect her from all enemies. Together, they will rule over a golden age for vampires in which humans will exist only to be fed upon. Horrified by his intentions, Elizabeth embraces her powers as a Slayer even as she realizes that the greatest danger comes from her own secret desire to yield to Mordred . . . to bare her throat in ecstasy and allow the vampire king to drink deeply of her royal blood.
As told by Lucy Weston, the vampire prey immortalized in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, this spellbinding account will capture your heart and soul—forever.


I'm a fan of mash-ups because I take them in the comedic spirit in which they were written, and simply appreciate the literary elements and characters. If nothing else, I am tempted to go back and re-read the originals. At the same time, I am also a huge fan of historical fiction because I enjoy the blending of reality with theory, the chance to bring our past alive once more. Secret History is what I consider to be historical fiction rather than mash-up because it reads with more depth and drama, with the added benefit of mixing in paranormal themes with Elizabethan England. Every page truly captures the spirit and force that was Elizabeth.

"Help me up."
At the sound of my voice, all turn- my ladies, my counselors, my ambitious beloved. I am, as I should always be, the focus of their attention.
"You cannot," Robin begins.
Truly, the man is caught in a hole of his own making and his solution is to dig it deeper?

I could "feel" the tensions and doubts from this young monarch as she struggles with such turbulent times and faces her many enemies. Adding in vampires seemed like a logical choice to include in this supernatural twist on fact, and using the mythology of Arthurian legend brings a sense of familiarity because learning a completely new set of rules wasn't necessary- the framework was already there.

Mordred. So convincing. So seductive. So cunning. I'm not sure how Elizabeth manages to deny him. The parts of the book that were told from his POV are that extra something that enables the reader to understand why he is so powerful.

Swing one way and I would open the eternal vistas of the night to her and place her by my side in golden halls where death can never rule. Swing the other...I would drain her to the final carmine drop and throw regret away along with her hollowed husk.- Mordred

I absolutely loved every page of this book and cannot recommend it highly enough! If you love Phillipa Gregory or Alison Weir (as I do) but you want vampires and the realm of magic too, then look no further than The Secret History of Elizabeth Tudor, Vampire Slayer.


The Mistress of the Dark said...

Oh I'm wishlisting this book. I love stuff like this!

Vickie said...

Alrighty then, it's on the WWBL. Thankin' you!