Read on: 09/10/2016
Rating: ★★★★★ 4.6/5
“She has the mysterious solitude of ambiguous states; she hovers in a no-man’s land between life and death, sleeping and waking.”
This is an empowering story about a female vampire. A young lady vampire is condemned to live a life (I know vampires aren’t alive but you get what I mean :p) of isolation in a castle in an abandoned town in Romania. Her days are spent waiting for her next male victim, who are lured to the castle by her mute maid when they stop by the fountain near the castle. The lady knows what she has to do, offer them a meal and a night in the warmth of her chambers never to leave. Although she doesn’t enjoy it, the lady vampire was cursed a long time ago to remain in the castle.
Everything changes when a virginal young Englishman arrives town in a bicycle. A soldier enjoying his last days before going to war. He’s lured to the castle just like all those before him but somehow he manages to leave the next morning, in time to fight in the War.
A beautifully written short story which gifts us with rich description and a poetic language, both of which I utterly adored. The fairy-tale appeal and analogy to Sleeping Beauty were so clever. The lady was both powerful and limited by the curse that kept her confined in the castle. The whole mystery surrounding the roses was quite interesting.
I’m quite excited to read more of Carter’s stories. I have The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories and Angela Carter’s Book of Fairy Tales so I should read one of them soon. I highly recommend this story if you enjoy purple prose and a different take on fairy tales and vampires.