Vlad: The Last Confession

Vlad: The Last Confession

4.2 27
by C.C. Humphreys
     
 

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"Trust nothing that you've heard."

Winter 1431, a son is born to the Prince of Transylvania.

His father christened him "Vlad."

His people knew him as "The Dragon's Son."

His enemies reviled him as "Tepes"-The Impaler.

He became the hero of a nation.

We know him as Dracula.

Vlad: The Last Confession is a novel about the real man behind the Bram

Overview

"Trust nothing that you've heard."

Winter 1431, a son is born to the Prince of Transylvania.

His father christened him "Vlad."

His people knew him as "The Dragon's Son."

His enemies reviled him as "Tepes"-The Impaler.

He became the hero of a nation.

We know him as Dracula.

Vlad: The Last Confession is a novel about the real man behind the Bram Stoker myth. It tells of the Prince, the warrior, the lover, the torturer, the survivor and, ultimately, the hero.

"A great tale, finely woven with action, palpably real characters and terrific twists of fate." -Simon Scarrow

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
While Vlad's brutal acts might have inspired the name of Bram Stoker's fictional vampire, the historical man has nothing to do with that classic novel. His real story is engrossing.

A novel that sets out to humanize and demythologize Vlad the Impaler...though he's still very naughty.

An unapologetic tale about a man who endured great losses and was driven by intense passion for his country and religion...the novel is aimed much more at readers interested in the historical origins of the Dracula stories than at those looking for another vampire story. As such, it succeeds admirably.

It makes you think harder about what it good, what is evil, and what happens when the two collide and combine within the soul. I love this book. One of the best historical fiction novels I've read. It gets my highest rating and a strong recommendation.

It was a fascinating tale about who the real Dracula was. Rich in historical drama and bloody madness.

The novel moves at a rapid pace, alternating between swashbuckling episodes, poignant relationships, savage encounters, and sins and redemption for them. The final chapters contain more surprises than any reader, even a Cardinal, should ever expect from historical fiction.

A rollicking, bloody, surprising novel of the fifteenth century which, in effect, reinvents Dracula as himself: a driven, vengeful, God-fearing human being.

An incredible story has been woven around the true facts that exist about the frightening but enigmatic leader of Wallachia and the climactic ending is superb.

Hard to put down and impossible to forget...It is a book you can emotionally lose yourself in and let yourself roam deep into the words of the story.

C.C. Humphreys does a fantastic job of bringing Vlad to life. Readers have a lot of preconceived notions where Dracula is concerned and Humphreys pretty much throws all that out and starts over. I loved the way he was able to show Vlad as something more than the monster readers are familiar with.

Vlad: The Last Confession was an interesting and engaging look at the life of Vlad Dracula and how history is shaped by political needs.

What makes a man commit acts of evil? Should this man be forgiven if his motivations were just? All of these questions are posed in the novel, but the answers are left up to the reader. Vlad: The Last Confession by C.C. Humphreys is part history, part epic adventure - an engrossing novel that will surely have you reconsidering other "villains" of the past.

C.C. Humphreys has done an excellent job with opening the Western world's eyes to the hero that Vlad was. This is done through highly researched prose, full of great characters but also through further appendices which provide even more information on Vlad Tepes.

Humphreys writes in a compelling way that brings the character and time to life and even though you want to turn away you also want to know more.

This was a very fascinating read about the life and times of a mad and compelling man. I was sucked into the story and now I want to learn more about Vlad and his younger brother Radu: The Handsome.

This historical and fictional account of the historical 15th century warlord known as "Vlad The Impaler" imagines the man's life through a dialogue-rich narrative that involves Crusaders, castles, Turks and love. The Vlad in Humphreys narrative is very human and shaped by the political climate of his time. And this book never once mentions vampires.

"Vlad" is a must for any fan of historical fiction, or those who want another view on the legend of Dracula.

An exciting, fascinating novel...

Booklist
An unapologetic tale about a man who endured great losses and was driven by intense passion for his country and religion...the novel is aimed much more at readers interested in the historical origins of the Dracula stories than at those looking for another vampire story. As such, it succeeds admirably.

The Biblio Blogazine
It makes you think harder about what it good, what is evil, and what happens when the two collide and combine within the soul. I love this book. One of the best historical fiction novels I've read. It gets my highest rating and a strong recommendation.

Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell
It was a fascinating tale about who the real Dracula was. Rich in historical drama and bloody madness.
BookPleasures
The novel moves at a rapid pace, alternating between swashbuckling episodes, poignant relationships, savage encounters, and sins and redemption for them. The final chapters contain more surprises than any reader, even a Cardinal, should ever expect from historical fiction.
Author Magazine
A rollicking, bloody, surprising novel of the fifteenth century which, in effect, reinvents Dracula as himself: a driven, vengeful, God-fearing human being.
Game Vortex
An incredible story has been woven around the true facts that exist about the frightening but enigmatic leader of Wallachia and the climactic ending is superb.
Suite 101 World Literature
Hard to put down and impossible to forget...It is a book you can emotionally lose yourself in and let yourself roam deep into the words of the story.

Debbie's Book Bag
C.C. Humphreys does a fantastic job of bringing Vlad to life. Readers have a lot of preconceived notions where Dracula is concerned and Humphreys pretty much throws all that out and starts over. I loved the way he was able to show Vlad as something more than the monster readers are familiar with.

Devourer of Books
Vlad: The Last Confession was an interesting and engaging look at the life of Vlad Dracula and how history is shaped by political needs.
Library Journal
In bringing to life the brutal era of 15th-century Ottoman-dominated eastern Europe, historical novelist Humphreys (Jack Absolute) focuses on the reign of Wallachian prince Vlad Dracula (1431–76), known throughout the ages as the Impaler. The story begins with Vlad and his younger brother, Radu, as hostages of the Sultan. All goes well for them until their father betrays his word. Radu is made a slave of the Sultan's son, and Vlad is sent to the infamous Turkish prison of Tokat. During his captivity, he is educated in the brutal art of torture, including the horrifying technique of impaling. He learns his lessons well. When eventually freed, he returns to Wallachia and makes war on his enemies, combining his fervent Christian beliefs with a brutality that shocks even the most jaded. VERDICT While Vlad's brutal acts might have inspired the name of Bram Stoker's fictional vampire, the historical man has nothing to do with that classic novel. His real story is engrossing and heavy, with a darkness some readers may find very disturbing.—Patricia Altner, Columbia, MD
Kirkus Reviews

A novel that sets out to humanize and demythologize Vlad the Impaler...though he's still very naughty.

The chief rivalry here is between Turks and Christians in the 15th century. Those sides are represented by Sultan Murad Han—and later by Mehmet, his son—and by Vlad Dracula. We first meet Vlad as a janissary, a 17-year-old Christian slave in the Turkish court, and find he's a finepupil, speaker of numerous languages and even reluctant scholar of the Koran. What begins as competition and gamesmanship between Vlad and Mehmet escalates into hatred, especially given the fact that Mehmet's father, the sultan, has had Vlad's father beheaded and Vlad's older brother Mircea tortured and buried alive. Mehmet is pushed over the edge when Vlad kidnaps the young sultan's new concubine, Ilona, and spirits her away to Wallachia, the small kingdom where Vlad has his castle. For six months, Vlad endures the tortures (literally) of the prison at Tokat, mercilessly flayed (and worse) by a dwarf and his able, sadistic assistant. At Tokat, Vlad not only learns but internalizes the prison motto: "You torture others so they cannot torture you." And indeed, Humphreys' narrative is filled with stomach-wrenching scenes of violence. (We find out, for example, that Mehmet has had the stomachs of seven servants slit open because one of them had stolen a cucumber, and he wanted to find the thief.) Vlad eventually embarks on a quest to free Constantinople from Muslim rule, an impossibility given the odds against him, but he does have the satisfaction of exacting revenge on some of his previous enemies.

While we learn much about falconry and medieval warfare, we learn rather too much about inflicting pain.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402253515
Publisher:
Sourcebooks
Publication date:
05/01/2011
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
754,408
Product dimensions:
6.12(w) x 8.82(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Chris (C.C.) Humphreys was born in Toronto, lived till he was seven in Los Angeles, then grew up in the UK. As C.C. Humphreys, Chris has written six historical fiction novels. Chris lives in Vancouver, Canada, with his wife and young son.

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Vlad 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
JConMartin More than 1 year ago
How to make Dracula, or Vlad the Impaler, into an interesting and even sometimes~~dare I say~~sympathetic character? C.C. Humphreys has managed to do that, at least for me. That the known facts of Vlad's life have provided the skeleton (pun unintended) of the story makes the effort all the more interesting. And riveting. The culmination of the three witnesses who are presenting their testimony in the present to the past life of Vlad ends up being the biggest and most successful of the many surprises in the novel. No spoilers here, but the end is truly terrific. All in all, I highly recommend this take on Vlad the Impaler, true anti-hero.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The characters are believable and the plot engaging. It connects a frequently used, but ill known historical figure and weaves an enchanging story about him utilizing sharp wit and good storytelling against a historically accurate background. I would recommend this book to anyone.
RLPace More than 1 year ago
Stepping back five centuries Saltspring Island resident C.C. Humphreys uses a different approach by taking a historical figure shrouded in myth and legend and imagines what the life of the real person might have been in Vlad - The Last Confession. Within these pages is an epic novel that gathers historical data and casts Vlad Dracul--the real Dracula--as the reviled impaler to his enemies, the Dragon's Son to his people and ultimately the hero of his homeland. This richly textured narrative, as told by those who knew him best (remember, this is fiction), casts the cartoonish figure of Stoker's novel in an entirely different light. It brilliantly brings into sharp focus the twists of fate, political and theological machinations and external forces that may have driven Vlad to the intense and excruciating means so vividly depicted by Humphreys. The rich characterizations and exquisite eye for detail make this an epic read, though not for the faint of heart. As Vlad Dracul learned the hard way in the 15th century, 'we torture so that we will not be tortured'.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author did a great job telling a story with many layers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book.so much. It was vivid with violence and beauty.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An interesting look at the life of Vlad before the whole Dracula legend we all know so well. It was good but not great and I read it quickly but it lagged a little in the middle and lacked an unknown element that would have made it a new and great addition to the Dracula legend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
purpledragonBD More than 1 year ago
I have always been fascinated with the story of Vlad Dracula; this historical fiction about him is amazing! I found it very hard to put down and read it in a few days, although it was a nice, long book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was simply superb! To turn a reviled symbol of naked evil into a sympathetic, devoted ruler, committed Christian, tireless Crusader and faithful friend is a work of pure Genius. One of the best things I've read this decade!
BusyReader More than 1 year ago
A highly readable book about Vlad the man; not Dracula.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Suprisingly good read. An interesting take with a few surprises.
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bookfanatic220 More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend. Not a dull moment.
Sarla7 More than 1 year ago
Would highly recommend!