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Publisher's Summary

Young, impressionable Aubrey is fascinated by the enigmatic Lord Ruthven, and accompanies him on a tour to Europe. But Aubrey develops a growing distaste for Lord Ruthven’s sinister and grotesque conduct - especially as it concerns human blood.

This novella, penned during that tempestuous night in Switzerland amongst such notables as Percy Shelley, Lord Byron, and Mary Shelley, served as the great inspiration for Bram Stoker to create Dracula. Discover the roots of vampirism in literature with award-winning narrator B. J. Harrison.

Public Domain (P)2009 B.J. Harrison

What listeners say about The Vampyre

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Kicking it oldschool

Any additional comments?

I was a little worried before I downloaded this, since another reviewer had said the performance was terrible, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's appropriately dramatic in the right places and the perfect level of camp for this kind of story. Wonderful little story, good reading, and well worth a listen.

3 people found this helpful

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I thoroughly enjoyed the story.

If you like Dracula you will enjoy this. Give it a try, you won't be disappointed.

2 people found this helpful

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Rich ground from which Dracula sprang.

This short story, the inspiration for Bram Stokers Dracula, is rich with depth and meaning. Being written as a criticism of life and malevolence of Lord Byron the entire Vmapire genre, from Dracula on owes homage to this short, but exquisite work. I would have preferred a better reader, but B.J. read this better than the Mortal Immortal, so maybe there is growth here. Not so bad as to ruin the story, but certainly not the quality as other more prolific readers.

2 people found this helpful

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Read it instead

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

'Vampyre' is an interesting story, one of the earliest vampire stories published. I listened to it just after I listened to 'Carmilla' to try to get the flow of the progression of the vampire tales. Carmilla is a better story, in my opinion. I found Vampyre a little too predictable, but then perhaps I'm spoiled from all the blood sucker books I've read (and movies I've seen) over the years. The big downfall, by far, is the narration of B.J. Harrison. His expression is very poor and his emphasis misplaced. I think he might do well with some childrens books, but I'm not even sure of that. I cannot recommend him at all. Since his is the only version of Vampyre available on Audible I suggest you read this story. I believe you will be better satisfied.

2 people found this helpful

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The First Vampire Tale, Tame by Our Standards

When I learned that this book was the inspiration for Dracula, I decided that I had to read it. This is where the mythos began. Probably shocking in its day, it’s a tale of a man who finds his traveling companion Lord Reuven has a paranormal air about him and ruins the lives of many he comes in contact with. Mortally wounded by a shot to the shoulder, he swears the hero Aubrey to secrecy, Aubrey finds it difficult to keep his promise when the fiend returns and has sights on his sister. Needless to say it doesn’t end well. The elements of the vampire myth are here, but not yet perfected. I read this book using immersion reading while listening to the audiobook. BJ Harrison does a fantastic job narrating. Do note that the audiobook covers only the actual story, not the forward or afterward in this book.

1 person found this helpful

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A great vampire novella set before Bram Stoker!

The Vampyre, by John William Polidori, was written about 80 years or so before Bram Stokers Dracula. The Vampyre is a short novella that follows the young gentleman known as Aubrey who accompanies the mysteries Lord Ruthven on a tour of Europe. Aubrey starts to become uncomfortable with Lord Ruthven's ways and starts to become suspicious. One night Aubrey and Lord Ruthven is attacked by bandits and Lord Ruthven is mortally wounded and upon his dying breath makes Aubrey swear to an odd oath before Lord Ruthven dies, or so it seems.

The Vampyre is a good short story, but I wish it could have been longer. The writing was well done and the characters were just okay. The whole story did seem a tad rushed, but it had some definite good creep factor to it. I actually really enjoyed Lord Ruthven's character the best and the mystery around him. All in all I was happy with this book and will probably tackle it again just to hopefully get a little more from it the second time around. As for the narrator B.J. Harrison he does a fantastic job with the story and really gets animated with his voice throughout this tale which made the story fun, if that's even a thing for vampire stories.

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I am terrified of Vampyres now.

I absolutely love how dreadful the atmosphere, as presented by the author. It is romantic in feel, yet you constantly remember what you are reading/listening to. The performance is all the better for it. Props for the actor.

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Very fun listen!

BJ Harrison dors a fantastic job with this story. I love the wroting and the way that they story builds uo to a creepy conclusion.

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Waste of money

Don’t buy. Save your money or credit for a better audio book. Weak plot line. Speaker basically monotone during performance. Very boring audio book.

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  • D
  • 02-02-20

As good as you would want

Harrison does the best reading you could want of this short novel, and probably a lot better than the prose deserves. Harrison breathes life in to the long sentences and longer paragraphs so that the story remains dramatic and vivid, rather than dense and wordy.

if you want to make sense of this important early vampire story, and you find the text by itself hard going, then you will appreciate this reading.

1 person found this helpful

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  • AlexDeDuck
  • 04-10-19

Classic tale

The narration is completely on par for this kind of story! It is a short one but definitely worth a listen.

1 person found this helpful

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  • David M
  • 04-21-22

Original Vampire Story(?)

Having listened to Dracula by Bram Stoker, I wanted to find out something of the origin of vampire stories. (Bram Stoker seems to assume that we already know what vampires are.) As I understand it, this book was one of the very first vampire books and very influential at the time.
The writing style of 1819 is a little hard to follow, but still quite listenable as read by BJ Harrison. I checked my understanding of the story afterwards by looking it up in Wikipedia.
From internet researches, I believe that this was the first vampire story to be written as prose, in English, although the concept of vampires seems to go back a lot further.