Book Reviews & Essays on Literature

The Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova

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This Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova

Despite being 676 pages of dense text accompanied by glowing reviews from major newspapers and magazines, this biographical novel about historians looking for Vlad Ţepeş, (Vlad the Impaler), is underwhelming. Part of the problem is that Kostova cannot quite sustain the suspense or the tone throughout the complicated plot and numerous characters and settings. The novel is told from many different perspectives. Kostova occasionally dispenses with any indications of who’s talking, and simply goes into the 3rd person as the reportage of past events gets too complicated. (Continue reading…)

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