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book cover of Daughters of the Moon

Daughters of the Moon

A novel by

Curtin chooses as his subject matter Elizabeth Bathory, known as the Blood Countess. She's a real life historical character who delighted in torturing and killing young girls in 17th Century Hungary. She is most infamous for bathing in the blood of virgins, believing this would keep the ravages of aging at bay. Her excesses were such that she was imprisoned in the north tower of her own castle for three years before she died. That's where the true story leaves off and Curtin takes over. In Daughters of the Moon the countess does not die, but crosses over into the waiting arms of her Dark Master, who rewards her with immortality in the form of vampirism.

Cut to the present. Elizabeth emerges from her underground slumber into the modern world. Taking the name Lizabet Bazore, she recruits Chloe Covington, the daughter of Covington Tobacco Company's founder and owner, to the Left Hand Path-after chowing down on her wastrel brother, Clinton. Lizabet trains Chloe in the arts of stalking, seducing and feeding. The two become involved with a four-man garage band called GloryDaze, which are getting ready to break into the big time. Only some part of Chloe still remembers what it was like to be mortal and begins to resent being under Lizabet's power. As expected, all manner of mayhem ensues.

There's nothing new about using Elizabeth Bathory in a horror novel. Andrei Codrescu and John Tigges have done that. There's nothing new about using historical figures as vampires. Kim Newman and Mary Ann Mitchell have done that. Nor is it unusual to see vampires caught up with rock and roll. Anne Rice, Poppy Z. Brite and S. P. Somtow have done that. So if the plot seems a bit thread-worn, why did I like this book so much?

Simple: superior writing carries the day. All the elements needed for a rip-roaring read are present. What the plot lacks in originality is more than made up for by excellent pacing, effective characterization and confident prose. The story hooked me and kept me eagerly flipping pages. I found myself saying "Ooo," "Ah" and sometimes "Ewww!" out loud as I read it. The characters are finely and convincingly wrought. I cared deeply about what happened to them. The shear momentum of the narrative made sure I never lost interest. There can be no doubt Curtin is a major new presence in the field. Fans of any of the authors listed in the paragraph above would be doing themselves a favor by giving this one a shot.

 - Garrett Peck


Used availability for Joseph Curtin's Daughters of the Moon

Paperback Editions

November 2000 : USA Mass Market Paperback

Title: Daughters Of The Moon
Author(s): Joseph Curtin
ISBN: 0-7860-1309-5 / 978-0-7860-1309-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Pinnacle
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA