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The Lost [Audiobook] [Audio Cassette]

Jonathan Aycliffe , Christopher Kay
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feraru leaves the country of his birth to claim his heritage - a castle in Transylvania which he plans to turn into an orphanage. Through letters, diary entries and transcripts, Feraru describes his journey into the Romanian countryside. He arrives to find the castle is home to more than memories.
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Product Description

From Amazon

Jonathan Aycliffe draws on the first part of Bram Stoker's Dracula for the bones of his story--a naive Englishman travels to a remote, forbidding castle in the mountains of Transylvania (postcommunist Romania)--and then fleshes it out with appealing characters and a different (but unabashedly gothic) plot. Aycliffe's writing is simple and fluid, concisely developing the shifting emotions and relationships as the dark underbelly of the story slowly reveals itself. The evil beings in The Lost are not vampires, but strigoï--free-floating shades of an ancient family of lords. They die and yet don't decay. Their appetites are even more unspeakable than bloodsucking. As Gahan Wilson writes in Realms of Fantasy, "If you enjoy this sort of thing at all, you will have a fine, frightening time as Aycliffe hints at and then delivers nasty surprises, ghastly revelations, and increasingly appalling villainies." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

When the protagonist of this potent gothic horror tale describes its unnerving revelations as "images out of nightmare, shuffled and presented to our gaze like slides on a flickering screen," he could just as easily be referring to the epistolary narrative that Aycliffe (The Matrix) uses to give his literary nightmare the discomfiting feel of reality. Michael Feraru's ill-fated trip to Romania to reclaim Castel Vlaicu, the legend-haunted estate his family abandoned after fleeing to England at the end of WWII, unfolds through linked journal extracts, letters and press clippings that grow increasingly ominous the closer he comes to achieving his objective. On the surface, they relate Michael's painstaking excavation of his family's buried history, which is tainted with hints of vampirism and ghoulish atrocities well known to the locals. At a deeper level, they capture Michael's subtle transformation from naif to nascent monster, as the hereditary curse he unwittingly reactivates perverts his ambition to turn the castle into an orphanage and insidiously works its effect through him on loved ones back home. Aycliffe channels with finesse the undercurrent of terrible fear that runs through the novel, orchestrating Michael's investigations into the forbidden past and his travels through the bleak Romanian wilderness into a single irreversible descent into the heart of darkness.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Horror In a Subtle Vein May 28 2004
Format:Audio CD
THE LOST is billed as a Novel of Dark Discoveries and is a subtle horror that continues right to the last page.
A prep school teacher in England learns that he is descended from Romanian nobility. This knowledge puts him on a quest to reclaim his heritage. There is talk of a family castle. Considering the situation in Romania after the collapse of Russian Communism, the teacher thinks about turning the castle into an orphanage. While pleading his case he enlists the aid of a young woman who tells him his claim will be processed more quickly if he claims he wants to start a hotel. But the castle is very remote and the two are cut off for the winter. Slowly the teacher learns the true heritage of his family. A dark heritage involving the strigoi -- the undead (but not vampires).
The book is laid out as a collection of letters, journal entries and transcripts from taped logs. This format actually adds additional depth to the story. It sort of reminds me of the original The Books of Magic when the battle for the world happens off stage. This book is a lot like that. But remember, this is subtle horror. If you are looking for blood, gore and body parts then this is not for you. But if you like a classic style in a modern setting, then you should definitely take a look at this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Atmospheric and creepy. April 6 2004
Format:Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. I wasn't quite sure about it when I started, especially after reading some of the reviews on here, but I was pleasantly surprised at just how engrossing it was. It's definitely not an Anne Rice-style book- that's a good thing in my opinion, but I'm sure that some people will come into it expecting that and they'll be disappointed. The Lost gave me the creeps- it's the kind of book that makes you keep looking over your shoulder if you're alone in the house late at night. If you're looking for something different & you enjoy a good gothic, give this a try.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 2.6 out of 5 stars  28 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gem of "literary horror." March 6 2000
By Thomas M. Sipos - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book belongs to two genres: horror and "literary novel." Those who expect a straight horror novel will be disappointed.
It's a short, neat little book. Its atmospheric prose evokes that of another British "literary ghost story" writer: Robert Aickman.
I visited Transylvania as a child in the 1970s, and seen Bucharest, and Aycliffe describes it well in this book.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good... Aug. 6 2006
By Logical Libertine - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is one of those books that people either really anjoy or truly hate - simply down to style.

This book doesn't take itself too seriously, and the reader shouldn't be expecting "The Exorcist" level of horror - this is gothic through and through. If you enjoyed Dracula or Frankenstien then you could probably appreciate this modern novel that lends much to those classics.

The story is composed of various letters, journal entries and transcripts of tape recordings, making for fairly short "chapters".

Perfect for a cozy winter night...
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Horror In a Subtle Vein May 28 2004
By Joshua Koppel - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
THE LOST is billed as a Novel of Dark Discoveries and is a subtle horror that continues right to the last page.
A prep school teacher in England learns that he is descended from Romanian nobility. This knowledge puts him on a quest to reclaim his heritage. There is talk of a family castle. Considering the situation in Romania after the collapse of Russian Communism, the teacher thinks about turning the castle into an orphanage. While pleading his case he enlists the aid of a young woman who tells him his claim will be processed more quickly if he claims he wants to start a hotel. But the castle is very remote and the two are cut off for the winter. Slowly the teacher learns the true heritage of his family. A dark heritage involving the strigoi -- the undead (but not vampires).
The book is laid out as a collection of letters, journal entries and transcripts from taped logs. This format actually adds additional depth to the story. It sort of reminds me of the original The Books of Magic when the battle for the world happens off stage. This book is a lot like that. But remember, this is subtle horror. If you are looking for blood, gore and body parts then this is not for you. But if you like a classic style in a modern setting, then you should definitely take a look at this book.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atmospheric and creepy. April 6 2004
By Samantha Rayis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. I wasn't quite sure about it when I started, especially after reading some of the reviews on here, but I was pleasantly surprised at just how engrossing it was. It's definitely not an Anne Rice-style book- that's a good thing in my opinion, but I'm sure that some people will come into it expecting that and they'll be disappointed. The Lost gave me the creeps- it's the kind of book that makes you keep looking over your shoulder if you're alone in the house late at night. If you're looking for something different & you enjoy a good gothic, give this a try.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Truly Scary Aug. 29 2001
By "sma9411240" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
If you like your horror novels with a ton of gore, don't read this book. If you have imagination, and enjoy suspense, then this is for you. Although the writing style is quite different, the storyline reminds me of King's The Shining. A man comes to an exotic and forboding place, and is possessed and completely corrupted by evil. The author understands that there is one thing more frightening than losing your life: losing your soul.
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