Carmilla, Deluxe Edition
The cult classic that inspired Dracula
by Sheridan Le Fanu
This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Pub Date 7 Sep 2021 | Archive Date 29 Aug 2021
A deluxe gift edition of the cult classic that predated and greatly influenced Dracula and much vampire literature that followed, including Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles.
In an isolated castle deep in the Austrian forest, teenaged Laura leads a solitary life with only her father, attendant and tutor for company. Until one moonlit night, a horse-drawn carriage crashes into view, carrying an unexpected guest -- the beautiful Carmilla.
So begins a feverish friendship between Laura and her entrancing new companion, one defined by mysterious happenings and infused with an implicit but undeniable eroticism. As Carmilla becomes increasingly strange and volatile, prone to eerie nocturnal wanderings, Laura finds herself tormented by nightmares and growing weaker by the day...
"Succeeds in inspiring a mysterious terror better than any other writer" --M.R. James
"Succeeds in inspiring a mysterious terror better than any other writer" --M.R. James
Average rating from 94 members
I love Carmilla, and it was a pleasure getting to read this deluxe edition of the classic. I first read the book as an audiobook, so it was a different experience reading it as text and I definitely struggled a bit with the language. But that's part of reading classics for me, and I still enjoyed this original lesbian fiction and the paths it paved in the vampire genre of sapphic stories.
I’ve had this one recommended to me and never got around to reading it until now. It was wonderful and I could go on forever about all sexy and the lore. Instead I’ll just say this classic won’t bore you.
Spooky season is around the corner and this would be a great gift for your Dracula loving friends. This is the inspiration of Dracula, Anne Rice and pretty much every piece of vampire literature that followed. . I love old gothic tales and this one published in 1872 is the perfect precursor to vampire stories that I love so much. Thank you #NetGalley and #PushkinPress for an arc in exchange for an honest review. . This book comes out September 7th
Carmilla is the original vampire story, steeped in the sexual tension between two young women and gothic romance. Cute retelling of our one and only Dracula.
carmilla is an eerie little vampire novella in which a bunch of stuffy old men take issue with a lesbian vampire just doing her thing. (personally, i think you give up the right to be surprised if you move to a remote castle in the woods and a pretty vampire proceeds to seduce/murder your daughter. what did you expect to happen?) i just found carmilla delightful. laura and her widowed father are living a rather isolated existence when a carriage accident near their castle introduces them to the lovely carmilla. laura and her new companion bond quickly and fiercely even as word spreads of a mysterious illness killing other young women—until laura herself falls ill. this novella had all the spooky, romantic vibes i could ask for from a gothic horror story, and a surprisingly ambiguous portrayal of homosexuality for the time period. rather than being othered, carmilla is viewed as a suitable companion for laura and becomes a beloved member of the household, which i found so intriguing. i subtracted a star because i wanted le fanu to explore that theme further in the book’s final chapters. what does it mean to kill the monster you’ve invited into your home?
I loved this gothic, sapphic vampire story, and I'm really interested in the ways it influenced vampire fiction. I can definitely tell that Bram Stoker, Anne Rice, and other writers in the genre gained inspiration from this work. Overall, this was an amazing read. I took off a star because the formatting of the e-arc was kind of flawed. It lacked proper spacing, so it was difficult to read.
This was a fantastic short and sexy read. I love anything to dow ith lore and lore with vampires - heck yes
CW- death, blood, murder - Carmilla is the classic vampire story that inspired Dracula and was also revolutionary for sapphic fiction. - I was interested in Carmilla because of the premise of “sapphic vampires” and the fact that it was a short classic that many enjoyed, and thankfully I am part of that group. - Although it took me a little while to get the hang of the writing style, it is relatively tame compared to other classics. It’s length also helped with that. - Once I got into the story, however, I couldn’t put it down! I loved reading this story about all that was transpiring, and it was just wonderful. - In terms of the deluxe edition of this book, the chapter headers were very nice and I love the cover! - Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Firstly I would like to say thank you to the author, published and NetGalley for the eARC of this book as the synopsis of this book drew me into the book and I am so happy to be accepted to try it out. But to die as lovers may - to die together, so that they may live together. This book is a very important book in the historical sense and I loved it, I love older vampirism dark dystopian books they make me feel happy and as this was published before Dracula as inspiration which made me very happy and excited for this book. This is an old book but it made me very happy. The book follows a female lead and her interaction with Carmilla a vampiress this is a fast pacing book with a lovers connection between the two females it is adorable and sweet and I loved it. I loved this book and rated it 4 out of 5, which is the same as what I have rated Dracula by Bram Stoker.
How fascinating is it, let’s take a moment to appreciate, that this female-centric vampire story actually predates Dracula. The fact that it is a novella will really work for modern readers keen to get into classic literature or (specifically) vampire literature. It’s much more digestible than “Dracula” and remains plotty and intriguing throughout. One of the things I loved and didn’t expect was that it was focused on intimacy between the female characters high surely would have been out of place in the time. Camilla is terrifying, and enthralling to the reader, much as she is to the girl falling victim to her. I really loved the way this story was told. The only negative I can even say is that it ended abruptly, leaving the conclusion to be a bit dissatisfying. Overall, though, it is a worthwhile and groundbreaking addition to the canon and highly recommend to anyone interested in vampire classics and further recommend it as a starting point to the genre. The fact that you always know what’s happening and who Camilla is doesn’t spoil the read, at all. This edition is beautiful. It embodies the gothic nature of the tale and allure of the vampire, Camilla, herself.
Another vampire story??! Well not really! It was a nice surprise to find out Carmilla is not a typical Dracula tale. Published first as a serial in The Dark Blue magazine during 1871-1872, the author, Sheridan La Fanu, has certainly made history by introducing the first lesbian vampire! As it can be expected from the era, there isn’t much exploration in physical relationship of the characters, but the sexual preference of the blood thirsty Carmilla is made obvious throughout the book as she confess her love to Laura in multiple cases. “You are mine, you shall be mine, and you and I are one for ever.” Narrated by Laura, a witness to a series of unusual events, the story covers different periods of her life. The story is fast paced and exciting and though short it has enough elements of mystery and goth to absorb the reader’s attention. With so many cliche vampire related materials out there these days, I believe many of us readers would find this story a refreshing change in the genre.
A female vampire written 25 years before Dracula who happened to enjoy women? Sign me up! The writing was spectacular. The atmosphere, the plot line, the ‘Oh my god, I can’t put this book down’ — it was all there. Highly, highly recommend.
Very cool to read the OG vampire story and even cooler to have it be about lesbian vampires. I would love to see a modern retelling of this. All opinions are my own, thank you to Netgalley for this arc ebook.
This book was a fascinating and engrossing vampire read, especially when considering that it inspired Dracula. The tension between Laura and Carmilla, the depiction of the slow ensnarement, and the suspenseful recounting of an illuminating tale all combined to make for a fast, easy, and fun read. The atmosphere of fear and suspicion starts slowly and then builds. I would recommend this for anyone interested in Victorian vampire literature, or anyone looking for a fast, thrilling read. Fans of Dracula would likely also enjoy.
What a great. deluxe re-publishing of a great sapphic story of vampires, blood, lust... and more. This is every bit romantic and dark, full of scenes that will sink their teeth into your neck and never let go... thank you for the e-arc!
Le Fanu missed a golden (or should I say "blood red") opportunity. He could have written at least four more Carmilla books if he'd only left her head on. I'd read Lilarcam, or Racallim, or Cimallar, or Aracmill. You see, Carmilla kept getting away with her dastardly deeds by appearing under new names at each castle, all anagrams of Mircalla. She was Carmilla and Millarca (which sounds like malarkey) so why not Cimallar? If Le Fanu won't come back from the dead to write sequels, I guess I will. Write sequels, not come back from the dead, although I won't eliminate that as an option. Carmilla actually was kind of a relaxing read. Carmilla, herself, was the epitome of of lazy, though she's called "languid" because that's a more high-brow way of saying lazy. Nobody saw her doing anything but lying around and occasionally strolling at dawn. The story does leave an unanswered question. Who are those people who keep dumping Carmilla at different homes and never come back for her? "Here, keep my daughter whom you've never met and keep her for a few months. I'll be back for her. Heh, heh, heh. If you want a quick read that is also a historic read (as the stepping stone to Stoker's Dracula) take a look at Carmilla, the Deluxe edition. I'm reading it a second time so I can learn how to live with rich people while they feed me (feed me, Yikes!) and I basically lay around all day and get waited on. If a 150-year-old woman can do that, I should be able to also. Meanwhile, I'll be writing the sequel to Carmilla...Aracmill. Thanks to Netgalley and Pushkin Press for letting me read the upcoming Deluxe edition of Carmilla. I'd thank Le Fanu but he's dead...unless he keeps coming back like Carmilla.
*may* contain spoilers. Written in 1871 and 1872 (serialized in a publication of the time), this novella predates Dracula. There is some beautiful writing, with several passages begging to be reread. At the same time, the author uses the word "languid" so many times, it made me wonder if he was trying to invent the drinking game. It's a creepy story, and like (all) most vampire stories, there are gay/lesbian characters. I love that the "evil" character is beautiful, rather unlike so many stories. I think, reflecting the time period and the publication method, the characters are completely oblivious to the obvious and are also very trusting. Also, thankfully, there's no glitter. But what happened to the oft-disappearing mother? Was there supposed to be a sequel or a spinoff?
This is an amazing story! It's crazy how it predated Dracula and how much it has impacted sapphic and gothic literature. It is truly one of the blueprints that led to the increasing popularity of vampires in fiction and the publishing of books such as The Vampire Chronicles and Twilight. It's a relatively short, fun, sexy read and is great for fans of gothic literature and/or LGBTQ+ fiction. I recommend it!
I voluntarily received a eARC of Carmilla via NetGalley. All opinions are my own. Carmilla is classic Gothic literature. Following the tale of a seductive vampire and a young woman who falls into her web. This is definitely classic literature and some may find it a big rough to read. However, once you get use to the older writing style it is such a good story. Carmilla has inspired the modern Vampire in so many ways and it is such a treat to see how it affected later stories. Oh and its sapphic. So its and extra amazing classic novel!
Published serially between 1871-72, Carmilla predates the more famous classic vampire novel, Dracula, by about 25 years and deserves all of the hype that the later gets. This was atmospheric and beautifully written, though there were some needlessly repeated words (*cough* languid). And it's sapphic! I particularly loved that the vampire was not "othered" and forced to live on the fringes of society but rather was welcomed into homes happily. This story is perfect for spooky season and for anyone interested in the origins of vampire mythology in fiction, and it's novella length.
A deluxe gift edition of the cult classic that predated and greatly influenced Dracula and much vampire literature that followed, including Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. In an isolated castle deep in the Austrian forest, teenaged Laura leads a solitary life with only her father, attendant and tutor for company. Until one moonlit night, a horse-drawn carriage crashes into view, carrying an unexpected guest -- the beautiful Carmilla. So begins a feverish friendship between Laura and her entrancing new companion, one defined by mysterious happenings and infused with an implicit but undeniable eroticism. As Carmilla becomes increasingly strange and volatile, prone to eerie nocturnal wanderings, Laura finds herself tormented by nightmares and growing weaker by the day... To say that reading this book became addictive is a huge understatement. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Wow, wow and wow again. This book has it all, Vampire classic, Gothic lit, romance and lgbtqia+ fiction. I knew this book would be great but I didn’t expect so much from it! A classic indeed, written many many years ago but still enjoyed in today’s world! I really enjoyed this book, it was a quick read even though it includes all of the above. I definitely need to invest in a copy of this for my bookshelf!
Thank you Netgalley for the arc! Carmilla is a classic for a reason! The OG vampire story! It doesn't get any better!
I should probably be a little ashamed that I haven't read this vampire novella, written by the son of a Church of Ireland clergyman, a lot sooner. Published in 1872, Carmilla predates Dracula by over 20 years. It's a very readable story and, in some senses, it's a very familiar story. A young, attractive woman comes to stay with Laura, our narrator, and her father in a remote castle in Austria and strange things begin to happen. Laura has visions, or nightmares, and begins to feel unwell, while all the while a strange plague seems to be affecting female villagers. I've read enough vampire novels and watched enough vampire movies and TV shows to know exactly how this novella was going to go. While any twenty-first century reader knows how a story like this will unfold, as well as what Carmilla really is, there's still a delightful sense of foreboding and dread throughout, particularly as we learn more about a tragedy that befell another young woman, in the recent past.. What's also striking about this book, of course, is that it's a romance and, while it may have been written in the late nineteenth century, it's not particularly subtle. Carmilla is mysterious and seductive, and Laura is attracted to her, even as she's completely unnerved by her. I absolutely recommend this book for anyone else who, like me, has missed out on reading it, or for anyone who fancies a little gothic lesbian vampire romp, without resorting to Lesbian Vampire Killers. Rating: 5 stars (it's the grandmother of vampire novels, after all). TL;DR: Gothic horror lives up to queer vampire reputation.
This book is a classic for vampire lovers. Carmilla is the original sapphic vampire story that is absolutely excellent. I really enjoyed the deluxe edition and it was a pleasure to read it again.
Sheridan Le Fanu's Carmilla, now released in a deluxe edition, is the story that is said to have inspired Bram Stoker's Dracula In an isolated Austrian forest, teenager Laura lives with her father, but both of their lives are changed forever with the mysterious appearance of the beautiful and mysterious Carmilla. What begins as friendship almost falls into a secretive affair as Laura begins to question her mysterious and magnetic visitor. Given this book was written in the 1800s, it was frighteningly ahead of its time, with its theme of gothic horror and romance. While the vampire motif only really comes into to play during the final third of the book, it is still a hypnotic and riveting read. For fans of gothic horror and classic vampire tales, Carmilla is a must read.
Thank you so much to Pushkin Press and NetGalley for providing me with an e-ARC; it is greatly appreciated. I am very happy to have finally read the predecessor of Dracula. It was very interesting to see all the vampire traits and lore that we still know and love today. Carmilla is the definition of beauty, and uses that completely to her advantage. One thing I found interesting is how romantic and sexy this book is described, but I really didn't feel that. The "romance" is quite one-sided as Carmilla uses her charms to cast a sort of spell over her victims, but the MC, Laura, is quite bothered by the words Carmilla says. As this is gothic horror, don't expect too much action. It is mainly Laura recounting her experience 10 years later, so a majority of the story is conversations. The climax of the story is also only about two paragraphs, so we reach a conclusion very quickly and directly. I feel like the story is less about Carmilla, and more the emotional manipulation that Laura experienced. If you're looking to get into classics I think this is a good one to start with. The language is a little uncommon, but not difficult, and it is such a quick read. Definitely worth it !
I had no idea this story existed! I love that it predates Dracula. The writing is absolutely beautiful. A creepy, vampire fast read. Well worth your time.
It has been years since I first read Carmilla and I really enjoyed revisiting this atmospheric, story about a female vampire. Highly recommended.
It’s been over 10 years since I originally read Carmilla, which at the time was done in an academic setting and being a closeted teenager, I wasn’t able to fully appreciate it. It’s been great to revisit such a classic sapphic story and made me realise that whilst I didn’t appreciate the story at the time, it was definitely instrumental is coming to terms with myself. A fantastic classic read, a perfect time for the re-release with Halloween upcoming.
I already kinda knew Carmilla because of the famous web series, but I loved knowing the actual story, especially because it was the original vampire story. It took me a while to get into the rhythm of the story, but I liked it overall.
Isolated in a remote mansion in a central European forest, Laura longs for companionship - until a carriage accident brings another young woman into her life: the secretive and sometimes erratic Carmilla. As Carmilla's actions become more puzzling and volatile, Laura develops bizarre symptoms, and as her health goes into decline, Laura and her father discover something monstrous. As a fan of gothic fiction I was surprised when I came across this and didn’t realise it existed, but now it will forever remain in my list of favourite books. I enjoyed every page of this novella which is a vampire tale that predates and possibly influenced Stoker’s Dracula, one of my favourite novels. Carmilla is the perfect villain and Laura our unsuspecting protagonist (who’s perspective the story is told from) reminds me Mina from Stoker’s later tale, a female protagonist I have always admired. It was refreshing to see the story unfold from a female perspective and explore the relationships between women during this time. An enthralling read that I will definitely return to again and again. #bookreviewsbymrsc #carmilla #sheridanlefanu
Lesbian vampire novels from the 1800s is a genre I didn’t know I needed until now. Laura is devastated when her summer companion dies before making it to her household. When the bewitching and beautiful Carmilla shows up shortly after, it seems like a stroke of good fortune. But with a strange illness sweeping through the town and increasingly odd events surrounding Carmilla, everything may not be as it seems. So full disclosure, I haven’t read Dracula, but I know this book is supposedly its inspiration. And when I found out it was the sapphic inspiration, I was even more intrigued (although slightly disappointed when I found out it was written by a man, but I guess we can’t have everything). My biggest fear/issue with the classics is the cumbersome language, so I was surprised to find that this book moved pretty fast. It wasn’t too much work to wade through, and felt more entertaining than analytical. The fact that it was only 160 pages probably helped. I know some other people wished it were longer, but honestly I thought the story worked pretty well with the small page number. Carmilla was an interesting character, and I really wish we got to see more of her. I almost think the story would have been more interesting from her point of view, but at the same time the mystery surrounding who she was and where she came from was a big draw of the story. The romance was more subtle than in modern books, but definitely more explicit than I would expect from a book of this time period. The plot seemed pretty standard, but I wasn’t really disappointed about its predictability. It felt like a familiar kind of story that I didn’t mind slipping into again. Almost like revisiting a comfort read. However, I will say that the ending, combined with the fact that it was written by a man, makes me question the message. I won’t spoil anything, but as another reviewer alluded to, it seems to paint sapphic relationships in quite a sinister light. Overall I’d say this was a solid book. It wasn’t earth shattering for me, so I don’t think there’s actually too much more for me to say. But I can also appreciate how revolutionary it probably was for when it was written, despite the questionable message. If you’re a fan of sapphics, vampires, atmospheric writing, or classic literature you’ll probably enjoy this book. Happy reading! Rating: 3.5/5 Intended audience: adult Pacing: medium Content warnings: death of a loved one, murder
I absolutely LOVE the story of Carmilla. It’s a wonderful gothic tale that captivates you, and I enjoy how it really is the original vampire story. The characters are so interesting and the new cover for the book is gorgeous. I do think it was a bit slow at parts but overall a worthy read. It definitely is an important piece of literature to read, especially for wlw fans of horror and gothic storytelling.
I really enjoyed Carmilla! I found it surprisingly easy to get into the rhythm and the writing style of the story despite the different language. I especially enjoyed the first half of the story, it was very atmospheric and suspenseful. However, I took off a star because the second half slowed down remarkably and the ending wrapped up very quickly. Despite my criticism, I would recommend this classic to everyone, readers who are just getting into classic literature and readers who have read a fair amount of classics!
Carmilla is a foundational novella for vampire narratives, ghost stories, the gothic genre, and is regarded as the first occurrence of the occult detective trope. The suspense is a gorgeous slow burn characteristic of the gothics, and truly brings the reader along for Laura’s fear when Carmilla visits in her vampiric state, and anxiety as she tries to rationalize what she’s seen. The influence this novella has on horror, thriller, and vampire narratives makes it an essential read for all fans of these genres.
I'm going to start by saying Dracula is my all time favourite classic. When I found out that Carmilla was the inspiration for Bram Stoker to write Dracula I added it to my TBR and kind of forgot about it until Netgalley had this edition up for review. Aside from the writing style of the time you can quite clearly see the similarities between the two works, aside from the fact Carmilla is sapphic vampire gothic novel and the story line is much simpler. I really enjoyed it, and would recommend fans of any kind of Vampire Fiction check this out to see where it all began.
I'm so glad I read this book because it's so important historically! I'm not sure why this book was ever on NetGalley, because it's been published 200 years ago and this edition itself has been out for 2 years at least. But, nevertheless, I was very happy to receive this "ARC" and the cover is absolutely gorgeous!
Thank you Netgalley for the ARC ! I didn't know this story, and I liked it. The story was interesting and the way it was written was very enjoyable to read. I was a little afraid of how the story between Carmilla and Laura would be treated, but in the end it was amazing. The tension between these two women was palpable throughout. I read this book so quickly, I recommend it. It's short and interesting, you get into it quickly and you don't get bored! On the contrary, we just want to keep reading to know what will happen next. CW: blood, death
I've always been enamored with the tale of Carmilla. This edition is enchanting, the writing vividly captures the fever dream that the protagonist went through. I particularly adore the cover very much!
Thank you to Netgalley for this ARC! Why read Twilight for Edward Cullen when you can read Carmilla for Carmilla? This novel was fascinating from start to finish and the writing was magnificent. I especially enjoyed the gothic setting the story took place in which really authenticated the plot and I also enjoyed the tension between the protagonist, Laura, and Carmilla. My one complaint is that the story was too short for me to like it to its full capacity but otherwise it was a thrilling read.
i saw this as a 'read now' title and gothic sapphic vampire novel that's the origin of vampire novels? hello. there's just something about the inherent homoeroticism of vampires and gothic novels and CARMILLA ticks all the boxes. the only thing i know about anne rice is her vendetta against fanfiction but i can definitely see how bram stoker and many other writers of vampire novels were influenced by fanu's work. CARMILLA has clearly laid down the roots of what we love about the genre and why vampires and the gothic are still so popular. the e-arc has formatting issues that made it a bit difficult to read on kindle/the kindle app since it's a converted pdf, but this is a great gothic classic, perfect for the spooky season just around the corner.
Thoughts 💭Let me just start off by saying that reading this novella was a great way to prepare for spooky season! “Carmilla” is such an atmospheric, mysterious read. It has the gothic vibes that I didn’t know I was needing. Plus, it has VAMPIRES! 💭The sapphic rep is something that I was honestly not expecting to find in this novel, as it was published in the 1870s. The attraction between two characters (not going to say who. I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone.) is quite clear from the start, and the romance… I was expecting it to be portrayed in a more platonic, subtle way (again, because of when it was written), which it wasn’t. As Pushkin Press puts it, the relationship between these two *mysterious* characters is “infused with an implicit but undeniable eroticism.” 💭Also, isn’t the cover for this Deluxe Edition sooo pretty?!?!?! Thank you to @netgalley , @pushkin_press for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review!
I read this back in 2017 for a university course on Gothic fiction. By that time I had already been wanting to read it for a while—ever since I first found out about it—and it did not disappoint. This is your typical vampire story, Dracula before Dracula, only it’s sapphic. Carmilla is a compelling character to read about, and the more we learn about her, the more engrossed in her story we are—much like our protagonist, Laura. Carmilla is equal parts possessive and sweet, and it’s this dichotomy that makes her character so interesting. Its length is also part of its charm. This is a rather short novella, and as such the story is condensed and extremely fast to get through. All in all, I really enjoyed this homoerotic vampire tale. Both the Gothic atmosphere and the fact that it’s such a short read make this definitely worth your time.
I must admit that it's not my first time reading "Carmilla", and it certainly won't be my last. I absolutely adore this book and truly believe that it deserves the same admiration as (if not more than) Bram Stoker's "Dracula". One of my favorite classics of all time and a must-read for anyone who's enchanted by vampires and the legends surrounding them.
“You are mine, you shall be mine, you and I are one for ever.” This is the story of a teenager called Laura, that lives with her father in an isolated castle in Austria. She finds out that her cousin died because of a mysterious illness, and so are other young women. One night there in an accident outside the castle and Laura's father offers a bed to the woman involved. But this is not the first time Laura is meeting that beautiful woman, she remembers her from a dream. The two become very close but strange things start to happen... Before Bram Stoker's Dracula and Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, there was Carmilla: the original vampire story, written in 1872, steeped in the sexual tension between two young women and gothic romance. Being an old novella, and with all the vampire literature that followed it, there are no particular twists that a modern reader wouldn't immediately catch. But the beauty of this story is its delicate and dark prose, the gothic atmosphere of the isolated castle, the tension felt by the characters. And the unexpected sadness of a young woman / vampire, doomed to hurt and kill the people she loves. The language is not always the easiest to read, but just like many other classics it's worth the effort. I'm glad I finally read this story and I would definitely recommend it to all horror and classics lovers! 4 stars. * I'd like to thank Pushkin Press and NetGalley for providing a copy of "Carmilla: Deluxe Edition" in exchange for my honest review.
18th century gothic lesbian vampire? YES PLEASE. This edition, of one of the most exciting gothic stories EVER, is beautiful. It's a story that twists suspicions and secrets with a growing female-fondness... The grandeur of a gothic castle sets a beautiful backdrop for the compelling relationship between sultry Carmilla and Laura's naive narration. It's beautiful, complex, and fantastically imaginative!
A more to the point precursor of Dracula, with women in the main roles. You know from the start what’s going on and kind of how it ends, but still a fun gothic book I was enticed by the blurb, promising a lesbian version of Dracula. While the queer overtones are there, don’t expect anything overly explicit or gorey. Still due to it’s length Carmilla for me was definitely more enjoyable read than its famous “brother”.
This was a fun read. I enjoyed the classic gothic horror, the sapphic-ness, and the narration. I wish the ending wasn’t so quick, which is why it’s a four star and not a five star read.
This book was a short and a nice classic!! I loved the fact that it showed a Sapphic romance :) Thank you for the arc, NetGallery! I liked reading it a lot.
Thank you to Pushkin Press via Netgalley for providing me with an early copy of the Deluxe version of Carmilla For a person who claims to like vampires, I have never read any of the classics. Which means that when I saw Carmilla on Netgalley, I just had to read it. It was not a difficult read as a lot of classics tend to be due to the language and way of speaking, which I appreciated it. The story in itself is not my favorite, yet I didn't dislike it. It was a quick read and it was a WLW story that involved vampires. There isn't much to complain about. It would be a nice read during the best holiday around, being Halloween. I have also seen the physical copy of this deluxe version and it is stunning! ⭐️3 STARS⭐️
This book is an absolute treasure and a delight. When I first heard that there existed a lesbian vampire novel that was written before Dracula, I was intrigued to say the least. This story is so engaging and you can't help but dive back in again and again. If you love regency / Victorian era romances, this book will positively delight you. The lost conveying between Carmilla and our protag will have you swooning.
The original vampire book, full of the tension, romanticism, and eroticism of the genre. I always love reading this story, and love this special edition.
This book is absolutely writing in classic gothic culture and sapphic eroticism. It is such a fun little read and something I recommend to everyone getting into reading old English due to the Novella's fast flow and beautiful descriptions. I wish Carmilla was as popular as Dracula.
Carmilla has been one of those books that I've meant to get around to reading for a long time, so I was very excited to read the ARC through NetGalley. It didn't disappoint. Knowing that it's a classic gothic story, which would be written in an older style of language, I was a little apprehensive about the ease of readability. However, it was surprisingly easy to pick up the style of writing and fall straight into the story. Personally, I found the story to be the absolute perfect level of spooky, sensual and darkly humorous. I was aware of the influence this story has had on the vampiric genre and also sapphic literature, and I'm glad to have finally read it and be able to appreciate first hand what an important text it is. A short read, but very enjoyable and definitely one I will go back to. This edition has a really striking cover and is one I would consider purchasing.
Sheridan Le Fanu's Carmilla has taken the world by storm as a classic and this Deluxe Edition has proven again exactly why.
A lesbian vampire novel written 25 years before even Dracula? Yes, please! Actually, I had read Carmilla a number of years ago, but what an enjoyable little novella. You would think a book this far ahead of it's time would get more traction in vampire lore than even Dracula, but I guess people just weren't ready for it. Glad to see it back out there. *Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to revisit this novella."
Reading Carmilla for the first time ever, all my expectations were swept away. Carmilla is truly a gothic masterpiece that reads by modern standards as a refreshing and nearly-modern classic. Nothing about Carmilla feels old-fashioned or incomprehensible given what an old book it is. From the descriptions to the dialogue, it is easy to follow. The story itself is really neat, a bit different from other vampire stories, yet definitely a vampire story because of the lore it utilizes. It’s twenty years older than Dracula, yet it’s less well-known and it also transcends Dracula in many ways, due to the blameless and enigmatic tone and character dynamics of Carmilla and Laura. Laura and Carmilla have one of the most fascinating relationships I have read. Their relationship is friendly, admiring, uneasy, sapphic, toxic, and intense. I would have read a hundred more pages of Carmilla. I wish it had been developed a bit more, or detailed more so Carmilla would feel like more of a threat. But that did not seem to be the author's intention. The ending felt a bit rushed and I would have preferred to see Laura have to grieve and process the information about Carmilla revealed at the end. But alas, this is still an almost-perfect story and set of characters. The deluxe edition republished by Pushkin Press has such a pretty cover and the text was easy-to-read and the chapter titles were goth and aesthetic, so hats off to them. 5 stars for the design and layout of this edition.
Lesbian Gothic vampires! ! I loved loved loved the tension between Carmilla and Laura. It gives off The Picture of Dorian Gray vibes, the Gothic element is fantastic, the writing style easy to follow and it's overall interesting and fun to read, but I have to admit that the last chapters are kinda boring, but it's definitely worth reading!! Ps; Carmilla is the love of my life, where is MY hot vampire girlfriend?
I personally love gothic stories and if it is queer that is cherry on top. It is a good retelling of classic Dracula story. I enjoyed it.
This was such an interesting read. We get a beautiful but completely mysterious setting which for was the highlight of the book, a very dark gloomy tower with a lonely girl. And then we have carmilla another mystery that we slowly learn more about through out the book. I did very much enjoy the book even though I was a bit underwhelmed at the ending, I wish we had seen more of carmilla and her sinister powers. However overall it was really mesmerising and I think one of the most interesting classics I've read, this coming from someone who doesn't read classics much is a lot.
NetGalley ARC Educator 550974 I was entranced by this book. The notion of a female vampire whose tale was written before Dracula's!! Some may find the story hard to follow. If you can keep up it's worth it. The highs and lows of love, mystery and suspense will keep you on your toes. I would love to see an on screen adaptation of this. Carmilla was ahead of time.
This is one of my all time favourite books, and I absolutely adore this deluxe edition. A classic gothic tale that's finally got the deluxe edition it deserved.
Before Dracula there was Carmilla, one of the earliest vampires stories, that helped set the standard for everything that came after and built the foundations for modern vampire stories as we know them today. It was originally serialised in The Dark Blue from 1871-1872, and then released as part of Sheridan Le Fanu’s short story collection In a Glass Darkly, later in 1872. For the 150th anniversary Pushkin Press have released a gorgeous hardcover edition of the novella, with a tag-line that highlights the influence the novella had on Bram Stoker’s classic. There are a lot of similarities between the two and the influence is undeniable. Anne Rice has also claimed it as inspiration for Interview with the Vampire. Carmilla is within its own right a classic of Gothic literature. I first read this when I was studying the Gothic in University as part of my Literature course and really loved it. I’ve always had a love of vampire stories and have long held Dracula as one of my favourite books. Carmilla is definitely up there as well and revisiting it now has been exciting. Not reading it for a course, meant I could take more time with it and not rush it with deadlines. The story is told from Laura’s perspective, who is writing the story ten years after the events happened. Laura lives with her father in a picturesque castle and has an isolated life. A visit from another teenage girl is something she had been looking forward to for a long time, before hearing about the girl’s untimely death. A carriage accident outside the castle, means that another young girl, Carmilla, is invited to stay with Laura. Carmilla is not quite what she seems, and Laura’s health starts to deteriorate. I really enjoyed this book. It’s dark and twisted and has some surprisingly detailed gory moments. It builds up an atmosphere filled with suspense and is a book I really escaped into. The story is a must for any vampire fan. It’s a classic for a reason. We are still talking about it, with new editions coming out, a century and a half later. The cover for the new edition is beautiful and if you haven’t already read this tale, then it’s worth reading. It’s haunting and chilling and really has stood the test of time. Don’t be put of by its age the language at points does feel old-fashioned but it’s easy enough to read and once you get into it, you don’t even notice.
I was very excited to pick up this book and I was not disappointed by it! This is a Gothic classic that had such a strong influence on the gender and so many well known writers that I feel like it needs to be read if you are a fan of vampire stories. It is beautifully written and easy to read.
I received an eARC of this title through NetGalley in return for an honest review. I do not feel like there is a lot to say about this book content wise. This book has been around for many years. It is the inspiration for Dracula by Brom Stoker. I think what this book gives that Dracula does not is a more intriguing look into Vampirism lore. I greatly enjoyed the story, more so than Dracula. I feel this story has been overshadowed by Dracula for far too long. It discusses Vampirism and sexuality in an intriguing way. I find the story to be long enough to keep your attention but short enough to not drag the story on unnecessarily. From what I can tell of this edition wise, seeing as I was sent this as an eARC, it looks like a nice edition to a shelf. The text is pretty and easy to read which I find is hard to do.
Loved this book! It's definitely an underrated classic with vampires. Very gripping story, that is perfect for the upcoming October days. The picture doesn't do justice to the cover, it's very beautiful in person. I highly recommend this book if you liked Dracula.
As always a big thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an E-ARC in exchange for a review. If you are like me and an avid reader of classic horror and classic vampire tales Carmilla is a must-read! This Deluxe edition is great and the cover alone makes me want to get a physical copy when I can because it's beautiful and would like nice to display. Plus it's a creepy little tale that helps inspire a large part of vampire stories and lore even up to stories coming out in the modern-day. Like most stories that are over a hundred years old, some parts can be and should be looked through a critical lens. But it in a way make the story even more interesting to read if not to just see how view and ideas of changed over the passing of time. If you were planning on picking up a copy of Carmilla for your collection why not go for a nice copy like this one!
I learned something new today? I honestly did not know that this book pre dates Dracula by 26 years. But Why? this was better. Ok so it was like watching a black and white movie and the horror wasn't at the modern day levels. But considering when this was written female vampire and a lesbian must have been very shocking. I enjoyed at face value. It is definitely worth a read especially if you love vampires. Enjoy!
It's a classic. Yes, it has aged and parts that were terrifying in the past, are utterly predictable and obvious, but it still has a certain charm. Every fan of vampire stories should read it!