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Vampyric Variations Paperback – Jul 24 2012
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"Nancy Kilpatrick infuses her vampires with the hot blood of life and erotic passion. Vampires have never had it so good."
— F. Paul Wilson
"Kilpatrick is the pony express of horror. She's fast and furious and she always delivers."
— Brian Lumley
"Nancy Kilpatrick's writing is both eloquent and erotic--her stories seduce the reader through the mutual attraction of dread and desire."
— Stephen Jones
"Kilpatrick's vampires have a distinctive bite all their own." — Nancy A. Collins "Nancy cuts straight to the heart of the story. She is never afraid to take risks, and her risks pay off."
— Poppy Z. Brite
"Nancy Kilpatrick's command of the language is precise, sensual, and addictive, drawing you sinuously from one page to the next. Do yourself a favor and let her lure you down the less trodden paths of desire and danger!"
— P. N. Elrod
About the Author
Nancy Kilpatrick was born in the U.S. and now lives in Montreal, Canada, with her black cat Bella. She has published 26 books, including 14 novels and 5 collections of short stories, and has edited 7 anthologies.When not writing she spends her time traveling the world, lecturing, visiting castles, cemeteries, ossuaries and mummy museums with her photographer companion Hughes Leblanc.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
If these questions ignite a spark of interest, then you will enjoy Nancy Kilpatrick’s anthology, VAMPYRIC VARIATIONS. This collection of tales is a welcome addition to the genre.
Kilpatrick’s take on the creation of vampires, “The Vechi Barbat,” features a curse, an animalistic creature, and an eerie Old World atmosphere.
In “Berserker,” the vampire figure has morphed into a Victorian predator of immense mystical power. “Berserker” is notable for its use of a 2nd person narrative technique. Kilpatrick’s choice draws the reader in to the motives and desires of the vampire who prepares to make 18th century London his abattoir.
“Bitches of the Night” is a comedic take on modern vampires. At its heart is a battle of the sexes. The conflict arises when the male vampire loses control of the women he created to serve him. In many ways, the story serves as an allegory for modern man, who has also lost much of his dominance in the last half century.
“Vampire Anonymous” is a darker tale, one where the predators use social media to identify and ostensibly dispatch the acolytes who follow them. “Vampire Anonymous” tackles the cult of personality and how the followers are drawn to the magnetic vampires like moths to a flame.
“Necromimicos” is a moody, short piece where the darkest prayers are answered. “La Diente” follows with the saga of Remedios, a poor servant girl from Ecuador. She is exploited by her employers, a powerful American family, but a talisman arrives from her homeland. A rosary of human teeth helps her realize her vampyric destiny.
The first section of the anthology ends with “Traditions in Future Perfect.” The focus is how vampires have modified their behavior to fit into the modern world, and how they will further change in the future. No longer are vampires predators; instead, they are businessmen who charge a fee to ferry humans from this life to the next.
The second section of the book can be described as vampire romance and erotica. Some of the stories are explicit and full of highly charged sexuality. Others fan the embers of desire before finally yielding to passion in near poetic terms.
“Lover of Horses,” set in a long-ago past, deals with a lethal vampiyic legacy. A beautiful tarot reader is kidnapped by gypsies before being saved by a powerful, breathtaking vampire in the Byronic tradition. She is dominated by him in the beginning, but she must thwart vampyric tradition in order to save herself.
“Time” is a first person narrative told by Paul. The female vampires he knows are lesser creatures, until he meets Layla. Still, she turns out to be a submissive creature owned by a vampire more powerful than Paul. He must defeat his adversary and Layla must find a way to meet Paul on equal terms before they can be together.
The anthology ends with “Wild Hunt.” Lorelei is a blind psychic with considerable abilities. She must confront Vlad, a vampire of a different sort. Though their relationship is contentious, Lorelei does not back down, and she fights him to a standstill. Vlad has the daunting task of defeating the male members of his family, and each one is superior to him in terms of experience and savagery. Lorelei and Vlad forge an alliance, and together they attempt to defy the odds.
In short, Nancy Kilpatrick’s VAMPYRIC VARIATIONS is just the ticket for lovers of vampire fiction in all of its myriad forms.
To me the vampire is a very tired trope, generally absent the spark that makes a story worth reading. The only story I've ever really enjoyed is LeFanu's "Carmilla" which is more atmospheric than action-oriented.
The stories in this collection were, without exception, excellent. I was enthralled, engrossed and never bored.
Thank you for the giveaway and thank you, most humbly, for breathing new life into these stories of undeath.
For hundreds of years, a small village in Rumania has played host to an ancient man who does not seem to age. The job of taking care of him has fallen to one family; the responsibility is passed down from grandmother to mother to daughter. He is kept in a cage, and deliberately kept weak, so he will not be a threat to the villagers. Count Dracula is in Victorian-era London, and is quite disgusted by what he sees around him. In a zoo, he finds a wolf who still has plenty of "wild," and helps it gain its freedom.
Turning women into vampires, and making them your "followers," may not be such a great idea if they still have the ability to perform sexually, but you, their "maker," have lost it. The eternal search for vampire victims enters the 21st century, with a blog called Vampires Anonymous. Vampires are not limited to Southeast Europe. They can also be present-day domestic servants in Southern California, originally from Ecuador. There are also a couple of longer "classic" vampire stories, that involve lust and romance.
I am not much of a horror reader, but I really enjoyed these stories. They show other aspects of the vampire world, and the "horror" part is not overwhelming. Vampire readers will love this book (if you have not yet read anything by Nancy Kilpatrick, what are you waiting for?), and everyone else will also like it.