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The Stress of Her Regard

by Tim Powers

Review

The Stress of Her Regard

To call this novel a vampire novel would be something of an extreme misnomer, despite its cast of romantic poets and authors (Lord Byron, Percy Shelley, Mary Godwin, John Polidori, and John Keats) and the ancient beings referred to as lamia. It draws on those writers’ depictions of vampires, particularly Keats’ poem Lamia, but paints all those fevered imaginings on a much parger and darker canvas. The events that gave rise to some of the greatest work of the aforementioned writers, including the summer at the Villa Diodati on Lake Geneva in Switzerland, are told in a completely plausible and much more fantastic way and the narrator who tells the tale is very much of a type with the historical figures in the story.

Rating: ★★★★½

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