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Vlad Hardcover – 21 Aug 2012

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press; Tra edition (21 Aug. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1564787796
  • ISBN-13: 978-1564787798
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.8 x 18 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 782,835 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

The author of more than a dozen novels and story collections, Carlos Fuentes is Mexico's most celebrated novelist and critic. He has received numerous honors and awards throughout his lifetime, including the Miguel de Cervantes Prize and the Latin Literary Prize. Included among his books are Terra Nostra, Where the Air Is Clear, and Distant Relations. Alejandro Branger is a writer and filmmaker. He lives in New York City. Ethan Shaskan Bumas wrote the story collection The Price of Tea in China, which was a finalist for PEN America West Fiction Book of the Year. He teaches at New Jersey City University.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A stunning novel that proves conclusively that even the oldest genre archetypes can still be used in new ways. Yves Navarro and his wife Asunción are part of Mexico City's thriving middle class, concerned with status, property, their family's material success... all your typical yuppie obsessions. They're doing well, but Yves' new client, a dispossessed Eastern Europe gentleman, brings with him the promise of reward beyond their wildest dreams.

Vlad is a novel of halves. The first half is about the tension between classes - the new, rootless middle class gazing hungrily at the unattainable status of hereditary nobility. Tangible success vs intangible status. Vlad Dracul taunts and teases Yves and Asuncion, offering them all that they cannot achieve for themselves: immortality, history, privilege. The vampire is also a metaphor (if an obvious one) for colonialism - he's a bloodsucking European, arriving to drain Mexico dry.

The second half is more visceral fare. Mars needz women and Drac wants to get some action. There's a bit of the old Faustian compact buried in here, but mostly Yves is running around like a headless chicken whilst Dracula has his way of things (and people). The conclusion arrives in a suitably squishy fashion. Although the book contains scenes that are slightly stomach-churning, Fuentes makes the point that all of us - fleshy human or lofty immortal - have our physical needs.

This English translation Vlad is out in English from the Dalkey Archives, who also graced it with a stunning cover...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nice little story but I was expecting so much more from Fuentes - disappointed it didn't challenge my thinking as I had hoped.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 3.3 out of 5 stars 20 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This may not be Fuente's greatest work. but it has the fingerprints of a master all over it. 7 Dec. 2012
By Noovella - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fuentes reinvents the Bram Stoker classic in Mexico City, when the count makes the journey from the old country to the new world with a specific goal in mind.

Before he joined the undead, through a ten-year-old girl vampire, he was the fourteen century Romanian ruler, Vlad the Impaler, also known as Dracula. If you don't know Vlad his unspeakable crimes are listed here. And they are not what terrifies you in this well-written short novel filled with graphic imagery.

It is the earnest attorney, Yves Navarro, who is tasked with Vlad's move to Mexico. Dark humor pervades the new tenant's many odd requests such as blackened windows, escape tunnel, and multiple drains.

Yves's domestic life appears tranquil, despite the loss of his eleven-year-old son, who disappeared in the ocean on a beach outing. He and his wife, Asunción, and his little girl live the middle class life. But it is the loss of their son that has opened the door for evil to enter the family.

This tale is more than a horror story; it also reveals the ignorance of ignoring or not noticing problems until it is too late. The reader always knows more than the clueless Yves. The vampire has his eyes on his wife and littler girl.

The book is comical at times with Vlad's fake toupee and mustache, but this novella is truly scary and horrible. Fuentes is an amazing stylist, and the story will creep you out and fill you with terror. This may not be Fuente's greatest work. but it has the fingerprints of a master all over it.
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Fuentes's best 9 July 2013
By H2Steacher - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a big fan of Carlos Fuentes's writing and was saddened to hear of his passing last year. I wanted to buy what I thought was his last published work, but as some reviewers have pointed out, "Vlad" wasn't it. Aside from that detail, the book (as others have complained) is rather short (more like a long short-story than a novel). After reading it in two days, I have to admit that the book is not one of Fuentes's best works. It began a bit mysteriously, so the Reader does get hooked initially, and though there is some clever descriptive writing in spots, the plot didn't much capture my imagination after that. If you aren't a Fuentes fan, I think you will be a bit disappointed in your purchase.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Waiting-Room-kind-of-reading 12 Mar. 2013
By tichy - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read it as a Bram Stocker's Dracula's fan, didn't blow my mind but "it's okay". I guess I had fun identifying the locations and trying to imagine Vlad in Mexico City.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For my daughter for Christmas 2 Jan. 2013
By Diane Adkins - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
She is really excited about this book. I read about it in the New York Times
Book Review and knew that it would be right up her alley.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Derivative and overpriced 29 Oct. 2012
By George F. - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
After waiting for months to receive VLAD, having purchased it when it first came up on pre-sale, I am sorely disappointed. I had thought, from the initial hype, that the book would be a new take on the old legend. A new setting doesn't necessarily make for a new take.
And there is the matter of price: a small book for a full price. Hardly a bargain. I'm truly disappointed with both the content of the book and Amazon's hype about it. I know that the publisher sets the price, so I'm not blaming Amazon for the overpricing. It was just a disappointing purchase and read.
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