Book Reviews of The Historian

The Historian
The Historian
Author: Elizabeth Kostova
ISBN-13: 9780739463062
ISBN-10: 0739463063
Publication Date: 1/1/2005
Pages: 642
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.

3.3 stars, based on 56 ratings
Publisher: Little, Brown
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

14 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Historian on + 902 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
To my dear and unfortunate successor...
I found this book endlessly fascinating. My husband gave up on it.

I don't mind books that get a little long winded when it comes to detail, and this book reads like a good Dracula mystery just as much as it does a European travelogue. The action and suspense is spaced between pages of seemingly mundane detail of buildings, landscapes, and other observations. I was not distracted by it in the least. Others, however (husband included) simply could not get past it.

I found this book to be imaginative, creepy, and suspenseful. It was a creative new look at a very common subject and I thought Kostova did a very good job of bringing a sense of legitimate mystery and fear back into a character that is so easily made into a cliche.

Once I started this book, I was unable to put it down and was sad to see it end, yet this book won't be for everyone. I think its writing style will appeal to just as many people as it will turn away. For me, there was something about the story itself, the plight of the characters, the endless researching of ancient bone-colored books, the ever present threat of Dracula himself, that had me hooked from the very beginning.

From my perspective, this is an absolute must-read. But it's impossible to say what types of readers will agree with me.
reviewed The Historian on + 33 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
good read. It's like a cross between "Dracula" and the "The Da Vinci Code".
reviewed The Historian on
Helpful Score: 2
So very good! On the edge of my seat and sometimes just a little too scary! Up there with Salem's Lot!
reviewed The Historian on + 21 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A young woman, who is a historian, writes of her search for her father, also a historian. He vanished mysteriously, years after her mother's disappearance. This tale is intermingled with her father's story of the search for his own mentor, who also vanished abruptly and under strange circumstances. All of this is tied up with their research into Dracula, who is still alive and immensely, creepily evil. At times, the book is fast-paced and spell-binding, but there are long sections of meditative and graphic descriptions of historical sites, monasteries and historical documents. The book made me want to visit Turkey and learn more about medieval history. The depiction of the characters and places is excellent and extremely vivid, including the description of Vlad Tepes and the horrors he perpetrated on humanity. If you enjoy reading atmospheric books with believable, well-depicted characters and sites, then you will enjoy this book, but if you are looking for a fast-paced thriller, then this is not for you.
reviewed The Historian on + 14 more book reviews
i couldnt get into this book. so hard to follow.
reviewed The Historian on
This is a real vampire tale- scary and full of good historical references.
reviewed The Historian on + 32 more book reviews
I was entertained. I love books with history, detail. You will too if that's the type of book you are interested in.
reviewed The Historian on + 4 more book reviews
An enjoyable read with lots of suspense and some very accurate history.
reviewed The Historian on + 12 more book reviews
Probably shouldn't have read right after Dracula. A little predictable, but an enjoyable read.
reviewed The Historian on + 22 more book reviews
This book was bit slow for me. That plot only moved forward through the characters' letters to one another (written in excruciating, ridiculous detail) was a distraction I couldn't overcome.
reviewed The Historian on + 26 more book reviews
Hated this book. Kept waiting for nothing to happen and the search never ended. Didn't buy the underlying concept.
reviewed The Historian on + 69 more book reviews
Wow. I'm a history fan and a fan of suspenseful, well-written books. This totally kept my attention. I ended up getting this as a book on tape for a long car trip (my book is still in it's wrapping) and I almost didn't want to stop the car for the night. I've always been semi-scared of Dracula since the Saturday double features of my childhood. Elizabeth Kostova offers insightful background materials of the Baltic nations and you can picture the area in your mind. Even though the book is long, it moves quickly from one situation to the next.
reviewed The Historian on + 100 more book reviews
Very slow.
reviewed The Historian on + 25 more book reviews
This is a big book, well-written, containing a mixture of history, geography and the supernatural.