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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Douglas Clegg's The Priest of Blood, the first installment in his much-anticipated Vampyricon saga, is an intense and grisly dark fantasy, set in the 12th century, that rivals Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles and Chelsea Quinn Yarbro's Saint-Germain sequence in both sheer narrative scope and unbridled, violent eroticism.
Aleric Atheffelde is the son of an impoverished woman who was forced to prostitute herself to feed her children. His life in the woodlands of medieval Brittany is changed forever when he is hired on by a local baron to serve the hunt and train falcons. His talent with birds of prey offers Aleric a respite from the destitution and brutality around him -- that is, until his mother is arrested and executed for consorting with the Devil. Exiled to the Holy Land to fight -- and die -- in the wars, Aleric finds himself in a distant outpost face-to-face with a beautiful, demonic seductress who becomes his mother, his lover, his savior, and his murderer. When Aleric rises from his grave as one of the blood-drinking undead, he awakens into a shadowy realm of nightmarish legend: a world where he could be the prophesied messiah destined to return dominion to those of his kind…
Since the publication of Bram Stoker's Dracula in 1897, the vampire theme has been extensively explored and revised in literally thousands of short stories and novels; but in The Priest of Blood, Clegg completely reconstructs the legend of vampires from the ground up, creating a complex, ancient history with its own arcane and sadistic mythos. If The Priest of Blood is any indication, Clegg's Vampyricon saga will be a blood-sucking masterpiece of truly epic proportions: Two fangs up! Paul Goat Allen