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Reviewed by Michelle Randall for Readers' Favorite
Princess Dracula takes the classic tale of the origins of the first vampire, Dracula, and turns it upside down. Vlad Dracula is the father in this story, and a ruthless man, bent on winning a decades-long war against the Turks, no matter what the cost, even if it means sacrificing his eighteen-year-old daughter Ruxandra. Too bad for Vlad he has no idea what he is doing or who he is dealing with; he is way too confident in himself and thinks he is invincible, which leads to his downfall. Poor Ruxandra has to deal with what her father has done, and what it does to her, which is ultimately to turn her into a vampire of the night. For a young girl raised for the past ten years in a convent, this is unthinkable; how can she live like this? Author John Patrick Kennedy gives the reader a first hand look into the innocence of Ruxandra's mind and her moral and ethical conflicts at having been turned into what she feels is truly a beast.
From the very beginning, Princess Dracula twists in ways I never expected and kept me guessing from the first page! I was hooked, wanting to find out how Ruxandra dealt with this change, and what she finally did. There were some parts I liked less than others, but it all seemed to work together to tell a very convincing story set in 1476. Author John Patrick Kennedy re-imagined the birth of the vampire and gave it a new life and a new beginning that is completely different and unexpected. This was a great read, but it is definitely an adult book. As a note to sensitive readers, there are some mature themes throughout the book, which come with the territory when you are talking vampires.