Cover image for Vlad the undead
Vlad the undead
Lützen, Hanna, 1962-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Toronto : Groundwood Books, [1998]

Physical Description:
190 pages ; 19 cm
General Note:
Translation of: Vlad.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 6.7 7.0 72904.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Lucia, a young Danish medical student, receives an unusual inheritance from her grandfather -- a sheaf of old crumbling papers. During her summer vacation, in the isolation of a dark apartment in Copenhagen, she realizes these are no ordinary documents.

The manuscript tells the story of a Romanian sea captain found half-dead and stranded on his ship, the Demeter, off the coast of England in 1894. Before dying, the captain dictates his bizarre story to Lucia's great-grandfather, the captain's doctor. The doctor learns that during its last trip from the Black Sea to England, the ship had been plagued by disappearances. It soon becomes clear that one of the ship's passengers was the monster of the stories the captain had heard as a child. Vlad Dracula was a vampire who had used the Demeter to carry himself and his evil cargo to the Western world.

Written as a series of manuscripts, letters, and diary entries, Vlad the Undead brings to life the brilliant, ambitious, and ruthless prince of 15th-century Romania and a contemporary young woman's fascination with him.

Reviews 1

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up-A lyrical and lurid retelling of the Dracula legend. On the surface, this is the story of Vlad Dracula as related by the captain of a 19th-century sailing ship and what happens to a young woman reading that account in the late 20th century. The novel is also a compelling discourse on the nature and attraction of evil, and the triumph and surrender of individuality. Lucia is a Danish medical student who lives in her Uncle Wille's apartment. Before his death in England, her grandfather sends her a 100-year-old manuscript that has been passed down through the family. It is the account of Josef Maresciu, the mortally injured captain of the sailing ship Demeter. Maresciu had taken a passenger aboard, a fellow Roumanian named Vlad Dracula. As Lucia reads the account of the voyage, she becomes increasingly obsessed with the character of Vlad. Maresciu's script is eclipsed and there is finally only Lucia's telling of Vlad's story, which ultimately becomes her own. The novel is written as a series of manuscripts, letters, and diary entries-all that is left of Lucia when Wille returns some months later to the demolished apartment. The author has firmly grounded her novel in what is historically known of the real 15th-century Roumanian Prince Vlad, a man of horrid cruelty who was also a stalwart defender and savior of his country from the invading Ottoman Empire. The growing attraction that Lucia feels for him is made shockingly believable. A haunting and compelling read.-Jane Halsall, McHenry Public Library District, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.