Friday, August 31, 2007

Another One Bites the Dust

I finished reading The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova last night. In fact I stayed up much later than I should have because I couldn't put it down. Taking place in three time periods, it is the story of a girl who finds a strange document in her father's library. When she asks him about it, he begins to tell her a strange story about that most famous of vampires, Dracula.

Much of the story is told through old letters and historical documents. The amount of historical detail is amazing. Kostova makes the settings in her book, primarily Eastern Europe, come alive. She also cleverly weaves the stories from each of the three time periods together building toward a very suspenseful climax. This was a very enjoyable read.

The one problem with the book is the sheer number of coincidences. I'm normally forgiving of these because often if they were removed you wouldn't have a story at all. However, Kostova really stretches suspension of disbelief at times with the sheer number of coincidences. Because the book is a mystery, I kept hoping that some explanation for some of them would be proferred, but, alas, such was not meant to be.

I did like the book, though, and intend to buy my own copy (I borrowed this from Shawna) eventually. I look forward to more books from Kostova.

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