Title: Hunting Prince Dracula
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Genre: Young Adult: Historical Fiction, Mystery
Publication Date: 19th September 2017
My Rating: 4/5 stars
In this New York Times bestselling sequel to Kerri Maniscalco’s haunting #1 debut Stalking Jack the Ripper, bizarre murders are discovered in the castle of Prince Vlad the Impaler, otherwise known as Dracula. Could it be a copycat killer…or has the depraved prince been brought back to life?
Following the grief and horror of her discovery of Jack the Ripper’s true identity, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has no choice but to flee London and its memories. Together with the arrogant yet charming Thomas Cresswell, she journeys to the dark heart of Romania, home to one of Europe’s best schools of forensic medicine…and to another notorious killer, Vlad the Impaler, whose thirst for blood became legend.
But her life’s dream is soon tainted by blood-soaked discoveries in the halls of the school’s forbidding castle, and Audrey Rose is compelled to investigate the strangely familiar murders. What she finds brings all her terrifying fears to life once again.
Thank you to Hachette Australia for sending this book my way in exchange for an honest review. Hunting Prince Dracula is the sequel to Stalking Jack The Ripper. If you’d like to read my thoughts on Stalking Jack The Ripper, click here for my review on it.
I adore Kerri Maniscalco’s writing, she writes in a very descriptive way, which is almost lyrical and helps to create vivid imagery. Her writing keeps me captivated with the story, and the way she weaves her story keeps everything suspenseful.
The first few chapters jumps into the mystery and intrigue of the story, hooking the reader form the beginning. Thomas and Audrey Rose were on the train when the murder occurred, and wow, the scene really spooked me and has me a little afraid of trains aha. But nonetheless, I think Kerri Maniscalco successfully set up a creepy and chilling beginning to another mystery adventure.
I felt that I fell in love with Thomas and Audrey Rose even more in this book. The loss of Audrey Rose’s brother has caused her some trauma and it prevents her from doing her job properly. However, this also helps to make Audrey Rose more three dimensional, as she suffers and grieves from loss, rather than just brushes past the experience. We are able to see her slowly recover from the grief through her becoming on track with cutting up dead bodies to unravel their secrets. Somehow along the way, her fears became mine, and my heart raced whenever I thought she was in danger.
I definitely fell more in love with Thomas in this book, I find him to be kind, thoughtful, sweet, smart but also fun and mischievous. He is also loyal to the people he loves and his flirting with Audrey Rose is amusing. The relationship between Thomas and Audrey Rose is quite sweet, and we can see Thomas develop as he tries to learn about other people’s emotions. I love their banter and that they are able to rely on each other to solve a mystery. They make such a wonderful couple, especially when it comes to the fact that Audrey Rose craves independence and Thomas tries to give her that (but fails aha, they were good intentions though).
We also meet Thomas’ sister, who is fun and witty and I love her. The sibling relationship between the two is wonderful and it’s great to see strong sibling relationships. I’d love to see more of her, but considering the next book will be set in America, I highly doubt it. There were many characters that I love and would love to see more of, but this review would be super long.
The thing I love about this series, is that we get to also guess who the murderer is and everything. And though I had ideas on who the killer wasn’t, I couldn’t guess who the killer was. Even at the end, the killer was shocking to me. Actually the whole ending was full of twists and turns that I did not see coming.
I also love the historical fiction element, and since I’ve never read a book set in Romania before this one, it was interesting to learn many of the folktales and history. I am aware there are fictitious history added to help move the story along. I’m now interested in books set in Romania, so thank you Kerri Maniscalco.
Although I loved the characters and the story and mystery of this novel, I found the plot to be slow at times, and it was hard for me to keep reading in some chapters. But the book definitely picked up in the last 10 or so chapters, and it was so suspenseful that it kept me turning the pages. In all honesty though, I think Stalking Jack The Ripper is my favourite out of the two. I am so excited for the next book and to see the adventures Thomas and Audrey Rose get into.
My aesthetic for Hunting Prince Dracula:
Have you read this book? What did you think of it?