Are you loving it? "Is that grotesque?" he asks! Who doesn't love a murderous aristocrat with a penchant for partially devouring his victims?!
This is the journal of Laszlo, Count Dracula. But it is no supernatural vampire who writes these pages; instead, it is simply your everyday, run-of-the-mill psychopath. The author's portrayal of the mind of a lunatic seems scarily accurate, and it is: Anscombe's a criminal psychologist whose patients inspired Laszlo's criminal mind.
For his part, Laszlo isn't such a bad guy, really. Well, okay, he likes to murder young girls and taste their blood. But he does feel really bad about it; his desire to kill is a compulsion which he cannot control. (You may, like me, catch yourself sympathizing with him a few times, before reminding yourself that he's a pretty big jerk.) Meanwhile, his townspeople believe him to possess saintly qualities and eventually touch the hem of his garment or kiss his hand out of superstition.
Will he get caught? Will he, tortured by guilt, turn himself in? As the murders increase, the facade of his innocence becomes increasingly difficult to maintain. But is the fear of getting caught enough to stop this murderer, or any criminal, for that matter? Unfortunately, Anscombe's glimpse into criminal psychology shows us that the thrill of getting caught is half the attraction.
In a nutshell: If you're like me, you won't be able to put The Secret Life of Laszlo, Count Dracula down. It's a page-turner, and an exceptionally well-written one at that (especially for someone who is not a writer by profession). Yet another reminder to go NOWHERE alone. And don't trust creepy Hungarian counts.
Bibliolatry Scale: 5 out of 6 stars