Vlad - C.C. Humphreys I bought this book because I thought it would link fiction with history. I expected a fantasy story of a curse forcing Vlad Dracula to drink blood and become the first vampire of history.
Well, this was completely not the case.

But, dear reader, don't believe I was disappointed. Though the book is not what I expected it to be, I was totally captured by the story told by C C Humphreys.
Actually, he does link fiction with history but in a different way than I thought he would. The myth of vampires is not relevant at all. Instead, C C Humphreys tries to reconstruct the life of the archetype for the fictional Count Dracula, namely Vlad III. Drăculea.

In doing so, the characters become so lively, authentic and manifold that I really cared about them and wanted to know where their fate (or the author, respectively) would take them.
Along the way I learned a lot about the historical events and persons of Wallachia in the 15th century without noticing it. I was very impressed by the way C C Humphreys interprets the historical facts and enriches them with fictional details.

Of course, the story does contain cruel facts about the life of Vlad Dracula. He was known for staking his enemies and there shouldn't be any sympathy with him. Nevertheless, I think C C Humphreys succeeded in explaining his possible motives.
For those readers with a sensitive mind, I would advise you to be prepared for some pretty bloody scenes and who thinks he/she can't stand medieval violence at all should not read this book.

There is only one little point why I decided to give four stars instead of five: sometimes, I had to read certain sentences twice or more times to understand what was happening. These sentences seemed to me to contain jumps in the progression of events.
An example: Vlad enters a room in the steeple of a castle. In the next sentence we get to know that he approaches a hawk. I did not even know that there was a bird perch in this room. This irritated me and I had to reconsider the whole situation.

Anyway, I think this book successfully delivers insight into the life of a highly controversial historical person without valuing it too much. Needless to say that the author describes his protagonist the way he imagines him on the basis of the meager facts that are known about Vlad Dracula but he leaves room for interpretation on the part of the reader, too.

I enjoyed the book and would definitely recommend it.