BOOK REVIEW: Anno Dracula – Dracula Cha Cha Cha
Posted by darkphoenix1701 on November 29, 2012
Rome 1959 and Count Dracula is about to marry the Moldavian Princess Asa Vajda. Journalist Kate Reed flies into the city to visit the ailing Charles Beauregard and his vampire companion Geneviève. She finds herself caught up in the mystery of the Crimson Executioner who is bloodily dispatching vampire elders in the city. She is on his trail, as is the undead British secret agent, Bond.
This time we are taken to Rome 1959, where Count Dracula is set to marry the Moldavian vampire princess Asa Vajda. The story follows vampire journalist Kate Reed who travels to Rome, not only to cover the story, but also to visit her dying human friend Charles Beauregard and his companion vampire elder Genevieve Dieudonne.
Among the glamorous celebrity world lurks The Crimson Executioner, who is killing off all the vampire elders in the city. Kate and Genevieve, along with the vampire British Secret Agent Bond (Hamish not Bond! – Although he does like his blood shaken and not stirred) must work together to determine the identity of the Executioner before Gene herself becomes a victim. However they soon discover there are older and more dangerous beings than vampires living in Rome.
As well as being an author, Kim Newman is also a film critic, and from reading this (and the other Anno Dracula books) you get a taste of just how deep his knowledge is. The whole book is teaming with literary and movie references, and, since the novel is set in Rome, means that Mr. Newman is able to delve into a vast array of Italian Art and Giallo movies. There is a separate reference section at the back of the book that points these out – and I find that some of the fun of the Anno Dracula books is seeing how many I have managed to recognise!
Dracula Cha Cha Cha nicely sets up the characters, and even if you have not read the two previous books (Anno Dracula and The Blood Baron), enough of the background story is provided meaning that you do not feel lost.
The story, whilst sounding quite simple, is managed well, with some extra twists and turns put in to keep you on your feet. Mr. Newman also deals with some deeper aspects that many other books do not – such as vampires dealing with loss and mortality. This makes the vampires seem much more human, and so readers are able to relate to them a lot easier. The recurring characters of Charles, Kate, Gene and Penny meant that this book flowed nicely from the previous one, and as a whole the books all work together very well.
And if one novel is not enough for you (and to be honest, when is it ever?), we are also provided with a brand new novella called Aquarius. This is set back in London nearly 10 years after the events in Dracula Cha Cha Cha. This time two young girls are found dead, drained of all their blood. Kate Reed must rapidly find out who is responsible before violence erupts between humans and vampires. At only 133 pages, the action is quick and the ending nicely resolved.
Both stories were very good and come 26 April 2013, I shall be sitting by my letterbox eagerly awaiting the next Anno Dracula installment, Johnny Alucard. From Titan Books.
This entry was posted on November 29, 2012 at 1:59 AM and is filed under Book Reviews, REVIEWS. Tagged: Anno Dracula, Anno Dracula series, Count Dracula, Dracula AD 1972, DRACULA CHA CHA CHA, Genevieve, Kim Newman, Rome, Titan Books. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.