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The Historian

Abridged Audiobook

Publisher: Hachette Book Group USA

Date: August 2005

Duration: 11 hours 30 minutes


To you, perceptive reader, I bequeath my history....Late one night, exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters. The letters are all addressed to 'My dear and unfortunate successor,' and they plunge her into a world she never dreamed of-a labyrinth where the secrets of her father's past and her mother's mysterious fate connect to an inconceivable evil hidden in the depths of history.

The letters provide links to one of the darkest powers that humanity has ever known-and to a centuries-long quest to find the source of that darkness and wipe it out. It is a quest for the truth about Vlad the Impaler, the medieval ruler whose barbarous reign formed the basis of the legend of Dracula. Generations of historians have risked their reputations, their sanity, and even their lives to learn the truth about Vlad the Impaler and Dracula. Now one young woman must decide whether to take up this quest herself-to follow her father in a hunt that nearly brought him to ruin years ago, when he was a vibrant young scholar and her mother was still alive. What does the legend of Vlad the Impaler have to do with the modern world? Is it possible that the Dracula of myth truly existed-and that he has lived on, century after century, pursuing his own unknowable ends?

The answers to these questions cross time and borders, as first the father and then the daughter search for clues, from dusty Ivy League libraries to Istanbul, Budapest, and the depths of Eastern Europe. In city after city, in monasteries and archives, in letters and in secret conversations, the horrible truth emerges about Vlad the Impaler's dark reign-and about a time-defying pact that may have kept his awful work alive down through the ages.Parsing obscure signs and hidden texts, reading codes worked into the fabric of medieval monastic traditions-and evading the unknown adversaries who will go to any lengths to conceal and protect Vlad's ancient powers-one woman comes ever closer to the secret of her own past and a confrontation with the very definition of evil.

Elizabeth Kostova's debut novel is an adventure of monumental proportions, a relentless tale that blends fact and fantasy, history and the present, with an assurance that is almost unbearably suspenseful-and utterly unforgettable.


  • meaghan n

    it took me 3 times of trying to read this book in print, and giving up halfway each time to finally get the audio book and commit to finishing it. and I have to say I'm so glad I did!!! I LOVE historical fiction and this book was such well written and and thought out. although this book and the main concept is fictions, the places that this book take the reader is educational and an experience for the mind and the imagination in all 5 scenes. I encourage those who got discouraged halfway through, to persevere to the end!!

  • Mary H

    Brilliant book! Both the concept and the writing are excellent. I was enthralled for the entire time that I listened to it. There's only one problem: I can't understand the ending, at all. I've listened to it several more times and I still don't understand what happened. Oh well, the book was so terrific; that slight letdown at the end can be forgiven.

  • Charlene Clark

    Once you have started listening, it was almost impossible to stop. Wonderful plot twists and turns. Will get her next book.

  • Terry Sandusky

    I it really my kind of story, but was very well done and I found myself totally captivated. The narrators were excellent. The historical references were very interesting about regions not to familiar to me. A good read.

  • Marsha Scanlan

    Loved this book brought a fresh new perspective to the timeless narrative of Dracula.

  • christy lewis

    This is by far my favorite book and the first audio book I ever listened too. It does have a slow start but it's definitely worth the wait, it will keep you in the end of your seat. Those who gave by reviews must be poor taste, I would highly recommend this to anyone.

  • Theresa Hoenemeyer

    I had read the book years ago and the story was ok. However, the narration of this was quite cartoon-ish and certainly took away any delights I may have found from reading it.

  • Aimee Guy

    Boring.... I kept listening hoping there was going to be a dramatic twist, but it never came. Very predictable. Although, I liked each narrator individually, it was choppy when they switch back and forth in a conversation and messed with the flow of what little story there was. I would NOT recommend this book!

  • Holly

    The story was ok, but a little hard to follow at times. Some of the bouncing around does not make sense. The characters are ok, but it was difficult to say who the main characters really are. There seems to be 2 or 3 stories colliding in this book and the result are the highlights of each story. You will probably like this book if you like vampire stories, but I didn't feel it was as full of suspense as I was led to believe.

  • Victoria Beaumont

    I have loved this book for years and have listened to it 5x now. it is suspenspful thought provoking, historucally informed, imaginative, and the many voice actors and sound effects draw you into a world exitment. Its my personal favorite. Just a hint draculas voice is creepy and so perfect it will give you shivers. I highly reccamend this book!


by Elizabeth Kostova

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Historian, Elizabeth Kostova
Historian, Elizabeth Kostova
This title is due for release on August 1, 2005.

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