“It's great to read the first vampire novel published twenty five years before Dracula. I believe that Bram Stoker was very inspired by this novel when he wrote one of the bestselling books of all time. Carmilla is so underrated, however, given by how this book is supposedly the quintessential...”see full review » see other reviews »
“It's great to read the first vampire novel published twenty five years before Dracula. I believe that Bram Stoker was very inspired by this novel when he wrote one of the bestselling books of all time. Carmilla is so underrated, however, given by how this book is supposedly the quintessential stepping stone in the vampire genre. It deserves more attention, at least, as a tribute to Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu who gave a starting point to all authors who wanted to write a realistic theoretical story about vampirism.
I read this mainly due to my high curiosity, not because I search everyday for more vampire novels to read in my spare time. I'm not even a fan of vampires to begin with. When I stumbled across this novel, I was intrigued to know that this was written twenty five years before Dracula. All my life I thought Dracula was the first vampire novel, and that's one of the reasons why it's still popular to this day, but then I discovered this little book.
It's short, maybe even considered a short story, but it was still a pretty good read. I mostly loved how Carmilla enticed innocent and naive Laura by her languid eyes and passionate declarations of adoration with as much vehemence of an ardent lover. I can understand why Laura was very charmed by her despite the nagging emotions of repulsion and disgust that never left her system whenever she was around her. She was unconsciously aware of the danger, but her interest towards Carmilla clouded that judgment.
As I got to the end, however, I was disappointed. I wanted a further climactic ending that can supply us with a few more closures about Carmilla; such as who were her companions, how and why she chose Laura as her victim, and why did she prolong Laura's imminent death to three weeks when she could take her just like she did with her other victims in only three days? With this, I concluded, that maybe Carmilla really did love Laura in some way, and it wasn't just a method to seduce her so that she could feed on her. I do believe she loved the girl. Why else would she say those things, feel the emotions bubbling up inside her when she's with Laura, and all those little romantic gestures to indicate that Carmilla felt differently towards her? I know a big part of it is because she silently yearned for sympathy and consent from the other girl, and that vampires are prone to be fascinated with an engrossing passion with some of their victims and that's why they develop a high degree of patience. However, I don't believe that there isn't more to the story.
I breezed through this short novel in just a couple or three hours. I still enjoyed it immensely, though. I liked the pacing and even the archaic writing style. It was very creepy at the start and also when Carmilla and Laura had progressed through their strange relationship. As I've said before, I was disappointed with the ending. The first time the book mentioned the word "vampire," it immediately proceeded with a docudrama about vampires, neglecting the growth the story has built up into an array of explanations about the bloodsucking creatures. Even though that's the case, I can't hide the fact that I also liked the statements about vampires given in the book. They are believably close to the real character of vampires and their true, dark nature.
With that said, I think I'm not that entirely disappointed after all. ”
“While possibly dated by the standards of the average reader, I would definitely recommend Carmilla to readers who are particular fans of classic vampires and want to read other fiction from Bram Stoker's contemporaries. It's definitely an enjoyable book, and well-written considering the length and the over-saturation that modern readers must deal with.”Nisa-chan666 wrote this review Tuesday, October 16, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A true vampire novel, beautiful and dark, and not a single sparkle-creature to be seen.”ArtsyRNmomma wrote this review Tuesday, September 11, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A little too shallow. Nothing really had depth. But it was quite believable...liked it nonetheless.”Audrey Coutinho wrote this review Thursday, May 3, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This book is described as the forerunner to Dracula. I found it vague and unmoving.”starr k wrote this review Wednesday, December 28, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This is the best vampire story. Ever.”MAC III wrote this review Sunday, October 23, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
"You will think me cruel, very selfish, but love is always selfish; the more ardent the more selfish. How jealous I am you cannot know. You must come with me, loving me, to death; or else hate me, and still come with me, and hating me through death and after. There is no such word as indifference in my apathetic nature." ”
“Bram Stoker would have been up the jugular without a pair of canines without the precedent set by this tautly-structured, well-researched novel, in which Carmilla, a young - if the word is appropriate - lesbian vampire seeks out and almost succeeds in assimilating her latest victim. Needless to say, it doesn't end well for Carmilla - but she has been resurrected in countless pale imitations.”Giles Watson wrote this review Thursday, July 7, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“The story built up to a plot and then it warped together very nicely, the author did an amazing job of tying up all the loose ends and unanswered questions the reader may have at the end of the book. The story is about a lesbian vampire. ”Sam wrote this review Thursday, February 3, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No