Author Lorelei Bell, welcomes you! Vampires are my addiction, I assume they are yours as well. Come and journey with me to the darker shadows, where the vampires lurk, watching us, waiting for us weak humans...

The journey awaits, come!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Confessions of Lorelei, The Vampire Writer

When I was young, I was called the “artist”. I drew on everything, including walls and sidewalks. The walls I got in trouble with—especially when I used my sister's favorite red lipstick. And I probably was in trouble for the school's sidewalks too, only they had no proof it was me that had done it!

I did not discover writing was so much doggone fun until I got into my senior year in high school and took a creative writing class, taught by our English teacher. Once I realized that writing a scene was much easier than doing the cartoons I had been drawing, I traded the colored pencils for a lead one.

When I expressed my desire to become an author to my English teacher, she merely looked down her nose at me and told me to choose some other profession because my spelling sucked, and my grammar was even worse—not in those words, exactly.

Did that devastate me? Well, it did, but it did not dampen my spirit. I worked on both areas. But that was rather hard because we didn't have spell check back then. But I wrote and wrote and wrote—and read a number of vampire and horror novels. I gave up social life. I hated when people called asking me to go do something with them. Damn pesky people anyway!

At some point in my early teens I became interested in vampires. I think I can give the original soap opera Dark Shadows the burden of blame, because I absolutely loved it. I ran home from school to watch it, or came in on the summer day from playing to watch it. I also watched horror flicks on late night TV too, and was considered “weird”. Anything that had to do with vampires, I had to watch, read or look at it. Back then people were NOT into vampires, and if you were you were definitely among the 1% who were—which included a lot of writers, actors and directors. So, I was in good company!

Another reason I became interested in vampires/the undead, may have been because death touched me when young. My mother died of lung cancer the summer before I turned 12. My younger brother and I did not have closure—we did not go to the funeral. I don't know if it would have been better, or made a difference, but I do know that I spent a year believing she would walk through the back door looking fine.

This one moment in my life is part of the reason I included in my Sabrina Strong Series that her mother also was dying of cancer when she was 11. It was my little secret revision of my own personal history.

These books are vastly different from my very first attempts at a vampire novel many decades ago when first I decided to pen one. Suffice it to say, it took me 5 years to develop and then write the first one, Vampire Ascending. Not one vampire is a cardboard character. Nor are the elves, shiftchanger, or my villain(s). I'm going to surprise you, give you cliff hangers and change the rules. Although there is romance in this book I will not hook Sabrina up with the most likely candidate. There's more than one guy who is likely to be her love interest. This is basically urban fantasy but with a blend of mystery, adventure and romance.

Also, I did not want to write about a kick-ass heroine, because I can't really relate to them. Seems that there are a lot of books written which have a woman being turned into a vampire, too. Sabrina doesn't get turned. But she does get bitten by a werewolf. And that is only the beginning of Sabrina's strange, and at times dangerous initiations into the paranormal world. This becomes her challenge, too, as the series progresses, as well as dealing with vampires and all the other paranormal stuff that goes on around her—which brings her into more danger—while she tries to hide it from her “normal” brother. The general public doesn't know that vampires, werewolves, elves and so forth live right under their noses. But Sabrina was already aware of it. She remembered the beautiful man with large eyes, long black hair who visited her one night... and bit her. She hopes to find him through Tremayne's underground world.

Art may have been my first love, but writing has become my everlasting love.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Real Vampires: The Need For Bad Science by Horror Author Neil Benson

Undead Vampires, ranging from Dracula, created by Bram Stoker, to the more urbane Lestat, created by Anne Rice, all share two basic characteristics. They are dead, and they need to ingest blood from mortals to continue to exist. They also share common traits with mortals. They stand, talk, move, run, and carry out all usual physical activities done by mortals.

How do vampires carry out their active physical existences? Humans, mortals, have complex biological systems that provide energy to the muscles, tendons, bones, etc. that enable us to carry out activities. Vampires are dead: their hearts don't beat; their lungs don't breathe; and their former biological energy producing systems are no longer functioning. What is the source of energy for their muscles? Dr. Katherine Ramsland wrote an entire book, The Science of Vampires, speculating about how vampires function and think. Dr. Ramsland could only speculate, because neither she nor anyone else has examined a "real undead vampire."

In the movies and in novels, vampires share blood with humans to turn them into vampires. How is this possible? Without hearts that beat, what keeps vampire blood flowing? Vampires are always depicted as being cold to the touch, quite logical since they are dead. Vampires are also depicted as being impervious to the cold. However, if they are cold-blooded creatures and they are outside, or even inside, in freezing temperatures their blood would thicken. That issue has never been addressed to the best of my knowledge. It's not a matter of unanswerable questions as much as it is illogical possibilities.

We've also seen, or read about, vampires turning into some kind of dust or smoke. The transformation of matter from one form, a solid, into another form, gaseous, requires heat or a chemical process. Modern science has no means by which it can instantaneously turn a solid object into a gaseous one with the exception of a nuclear explosion. There's a lot of bad science going on when it comes to the undead vampire. The stories of these creatures arise from folklore and are given life not by some magical process, but by the creative imagination of writers. The reader also has to participate, because more than a little suspension of disbelief is required to go along with the idea. However, judging by the current popularity of vampire books, movies, and now television shows, science and logic are the furthest things from the minds of readers and viewers. A link to my vampire novel is provided below. I can write about vampires even if I don't think they exist.
 About Neil:
Neil Benson: Retired early after working thirty-seven years as a psychologist in mental health and behavioral managed-care healthcare to become a full-time writer. Unholy Embrace is his first published novel.

His short story, "A Problem with Werewolves", appeared in the October, 2010, issue of Night to Dawn magazine.

Neil lives with his life partner just outside north of Atlanta, Georgia.

He has a great website that he founded on the strong recommendations from several writers. Hope you visit it:

Monday, June 25, 2012

Guest Post by Author Rebeka Harrington Asking: Vampires vs. Humans: Which is More Evil?

When asked that question a lot of folks would likely respond “vampires”. This is a knee-jerk reaction to the fact vampires drink blood and kill humans. Labelling vampires evil purely on the basis of their predatory nature is damn unfair in my opinion. Keep in mind we humans hunt and farm animals for our survival.

Let’s face facts, vampires need blood to survive. Do we condemn predators in the animal kingdom as evil because they hunt and kill? The way I see it, vampires are another step up in the food chain, no more inherently evil than a lion or tiger. It just so happens they feed on humans, and humanity likes to view itself as the Numero Uno species on the planet.

For a moment let’s ignore the fact vampires drink blood, subsequently killing humans, and take a closer look at human behaviour.

Throughout history, humanity has committed a litany of atrocities against itself and we continue to do so.  Think about it people; slavery, wars, religious and minority persecution, discrimination, murder, theft, assault, corruption amid governments and law enforcement. The list of humanities crimes is a mile long. Worst of all, we do this to each other, our own species! How can that not be described as evil?

What I like to do with my writing is explore humanity. Why do we not learn from our past? Why do we repeatedly commit the same crimes against each other? Is humanity incapable of learning from past mistakes?

Using vampires allows me to scrutinise human behaviour and make judgements or declarations human beings cannot. (Without coming across as sanctimonious prigs.) Vampires see straight through us, they see our strengths and weakness; they see where we went wrong.

In my latest book I look at relationships and sexuality. Now some of you may be offended with the notion of same-sex relationships, and that’s okay. But ask yourself, why? Why do we feel we have to label everything? Man or woman? Young or old? Black or white? When we label people and behaviour it bestows certain expectations, a lot of which are unfair and unjust.

Remember when it was assumed and expected that all women were good for was to marry and have children? That’s because women were lumped in together as the weaker sex. Roll forward in time and we now accept as fact, that women and men should be treated as equals. After all, they are free-thinking human beings.

Never would I like my writing to be described as a social lecture. This is why I use vampires. I want people to enjoy the story, and if they take something away from it that maybe makes them think a little; well that’s just a bonus.

About Rebeka Harrington

Raised in country Victoria, Rebeka started her writing career working for the local newspaper as a teenager. While she decided not to pursue this as a career, she has always enjoyed writing and being creative

With so many varied interests and eccletic taste in most things, Rebeka enjoys incorporating all of them in her writing. She particularly enjoys writing about vampires.

Rebeka seeks to define and explain vampires in a way not done before. This was achieved with her debut title "Vampires Revealed". Following titles revolve around exploring the world and characters created in her first release.

Currently Rebeka lives in Melbourne with her “demented” but lovable cat, dividing her time between writing and managing a small boutique entertainment agency.

Rebeka’s latest release Desires Revealed is available for purchase at:



Cosy up with her characters –

 Keep in touch and visit her blog –

Thursday, June 21, 2012


I'm just repeating this post because it's so timely! My novel, The House on Blackstone Moor is out and the sequel will be out very shortly.

Now, this post originally discussed gothic romance with dark horror.

As a matter of fact there is a warning about the horror level in the next book (due out this summer)!


Here's the post:

That's right. You read it correctly--with DARKEST, BLEAKEST, MOST FRIGHTENING HORROR.

I'm not speaking of the great gothic horror novels of the past. I'm talking Jane Eyre with vampires, okay?!

So the question is boys and girls, can these two narratives be happily married and produce successful novels?

I think they can!

I happen (aside from my husband) to be in love with the gothic narrative!
And here’s why:

"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again. It seemed to me I stood by the iron gate leading to the drive and for a while I could not enter, for the way was barred to me..."

Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier


“They used to hang men at Four Turnings in the old days. Not any more, though…”

My Cousin Rachel by Daphne DuMaurier


“There was no possibility of taking a walk that day. We had been
wandering, indeed, in the leafless shrubbery an hour in the morning; but
since dinner (Mrs. Reed, when there was no company, dined early) the cold
winter wind had brought with it clouds so sombre and a rain so
penetrating, that further out-door exercise was now out of the question...”

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte


“During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the
autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the
heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a
singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself,
as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the

Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe


The gothic narrative is to my mind the greatest narrative ever written. We are from those very first lines pulled into another world—one that is distinctly and irrevocably different from our own.

Perhaps we read those lines and sensing the danger we might find within this world wonder if we should continue!

But those of us, who enjoy the thrill of the unknown especially when there is the possibility of serious danger, will happily proceed!

These authors write of dark dreams, of sadness and of death and of love too, but even in those novels that depict love there is often mystery and frightening evil as well.

I think books define who we are, when I was a young girl I was drawn to these books with their haunting narrative.

I don’t know why, nor do I know why as a pre-teen I was addicted to the morose prose of Edgar Allan Poe to the point where my parents called me Edgarina!

“Her writing is morbid.” My mother admitted worryingly to my eighth grade teacher.

“Let it come out!”

They did and it did!

I still am in love with this narrative and I always will be, not to imitate it but to redefine it in my own way.

My favorite fiction to read and to write is horror. Not paranormal romance as interesting as it may be, but utter inescapable, heart-throbbing, toe-curling, chills-down-your-back-horror!

And horror is terrifying or they would not call it horror!

Madness, obsession, devil worship—vampirism—these are the themes I use in my writing because they are part of the great and grim world of horror, because in the last analysis if it doesn’t scare the living daylights out of us, it isn’t horror.

And if there is dark horror in my first novel in THE BLACKSTONE VAMPIRE SERIES, wait until you read what the second, Unholy Testament is like. That will be released this summer.

You won't believe the darkness in that book, I can tell you!
I have Satanic sacrifices, orgies, devil worship (lots), and dare I say it--flesh eating vampires!

Well no one's perfect, right?

I mean it's dark, it's so dark that you might need to read it sparingly. But inasmuch as it is the confession of a demon, you will also be moved for he has penned this confession to the woman he loves!

Watch for updates on this and my author blog:

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Download The House on Blackstone Moor For Free JUNE 14 - 16!

I'm one of the authors participating in the Great Indie Authors Readers Event.

From June 14th - June 16th you can get my book FREE!


"They say my father was mad, so corrupted by evil and tainted by sin that he did what he did. I came home to find them all dead; their throats savagely cut. My sisters only five and eight were gone as well as my brother who was twelve. My mother too lay butchered in her marriage bed. The bed her children were born in…"

 Young Rose Baines discovers the savage murders of her family by her mad, incestuous father.

She is plunged into a nightmare of hell and is incarcerated in two madhouses after which she is helped to obtain a position as governess at Blackstone House.

 The house is located on haunted moorland. Nothing is as it seems for Blackstone House and its inhabitants have hideous secrets. There is unimaginable horror there but there is love too--love that comes at a terrible price.

 The story is as haunting as it is terrifying and will remain with the reader long after its disturbing tale has been told.

 From Amazon Reviews:

It is one of the best vampire/demon stories I have ever read and I look forward to reading her next incarnation.
Lisa McCourt Hollar

A highly recommended read.
Michelle Wright

The amount of twists and turns this book takes will leave your head spinning and guessing until the end...epic journey
Lee Pletzers

The moods of great works such as Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice, even Dickens (a la Oliver Twist and David Copperfield) surface throughout. Carole Gill presents great narrative, well-drawn characters, and has a marvelous ear for dialogue.
DK Trellis

It has been quite a while since I have read a paranormal love story mixed with horror, and this is one that should not be missed!
For the Love of Film and Novels

This story is beyond what one could imagine a nightmare of demons, vampires, and more. A must read for any one wanting more of a edgy tale.
BJ Gaskill Inside BJ’s Head

A real page turner. Carole Gill is a gifted author keeping the reader intrigued until the end...
Lisa Burnett

The sheer magnificence of the Gothic scenes and language; the characters playing off each other, every one bidding for his or her time to shine; the blending of the physical with the psyche; and the age old battle between good and evil, but with a whole new twist added to the evil, makes this a must read, don't put it down masterpiece. 

Robert Nelson

The House on Blackstone Moor never relinquishes its spellbinding hold on its readership; from the first sentence to the last, a beguiling work of fiction, leaving the reader wistfully anticipating a sequel.
Quinn Cullen

I like stories with class -this is one of them. Don't let the categorization as "gothic romance" or "gothic horror" fool you. If any of this is not your cup of tea, try it anyway. There's much more to this story than meets the eye.
Natalie Guillaumier-Owens "book-lover"

I read The House on Blackstone Moor in two days and from the beginning I was hooked!
My Cozy Corner Book Reviews

`The House on Blackstone Moor' blew me away. This book is so intensely dark and twisted and will take you on a journey that will change you forever.
C. Scarlett

I was really surprised at how well written this book is. It was spooky and creepy right from the beginning

The House on Blackstone Moor is a wonderfully written gothic romance that fans of Carole Gill's other works will surely appreciate as will fans of dark gothic romances and paranormal romance.
Stephanie Ward

This is a terrifying and evil filled book. Rose endures so much pain her 19 years of life that most don't experience in a lifetime. Full of demons , spirits , fallen angels , and Satan himself
Crystal Trent Dotson

I would recommend the book to those who like gothic horror, vampires and evil men. There is also a sequel in the works which will focus on Eco, the very evil demi-demon, the guy you love to hate!
Spot (Stacey Turner)

Fast-paced tale that takes the protagonist through the depth of depravity and tragedy, into insanity, recovery and apparent salvation, until her salvation turns into another kind of hell
Thomas D. Cooke

The twists and turns came at me from out of no where, i never saw them coming, and that just added to the beauty of this book. i would recommend this story to everyone, even if you dont think its your type of book, try it, i promise you'll fall in love with it as i did!!!
Donna West

This is truly an outstanding horror tale that provokes deeper thought even as it scares you out of your wits.
Laurie Jenkins

What Carole Gill has achieved with this Gothic novel is to transport the reader into the time-warped plight of a heroine whose sense of doom underlies a dark journey through twisted depravity and tangled horrors.
Lori Lopez

This is a book for people that like me love the paranormal seeing combined with a good historical story. I loved to read how this two elements were combined, they worked so well together. This is by far one om my favourite books this year.
Annabel Blootshofd

It's haunting and scary and the ending will totally blow you away!

The book over all is of the subtle kind of horror, nothing gratuitous or gory - until all hell breaks loose near the end, which I won't reveal.
Rebecca Treadway

I for one found this gloriously gothic, refreshingly brutal, honestly horrific and a great read. I look forward to the sequel.
Taliesin Meets the Vampires


Read it now! It is part of the 4-book series,


The next, Unholy Testament will be out later this summer!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Vampire Children, a Strange and Haunting Allure!

Claudia, the child vampire in Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire is, in my opinion, the most haunting character I have ever seen portrayed in film or fiction.

She is a child that will not age, she is like an angel, but being vampiric, she is also a demon, for a monster dwells within that doll-like child, and it is that much more frightening because she looks angelic.

Her story is sad and so poignant. But I am not focusing on that. I am, instead, thinking about the portrayl of other child vampires.

I have two in my novel, The House on Blackstone Moor. They are different than Claudia, having perished during the witch hysteria that seized 16th Century France when they were raised from the dead.

And as the point is made throughout my novel, whether they be raised or created, no two vampires come back the same. That brief sojourn through hell affects each differently.

That's my take on vampire fiction. But truly, whether they come back monsterous or not, they are, because they are children, haunting.

It is so troubling. These tragic monsters, condemned to exist forever undead. Forever that is unless they are, somehow, destroyed.

And what of their memories and feelings. Do they know fear? Can they know fear? Mine do, they greatly fear the vampire destroyers for they have seen the horrific carnage left in the wake of a destroyer attack. Being undead does not mean they are not, sometimes, afraid.

Yet they have pleasure too. They enjoy sleeping for instance. They so like to dream, my Ada and Simon.

But what do they dream of? Do they dream of their living lives and also of their terrible deaths? Do they dream of hell? Do they see in their dreams Satan's own demons reaching out to draw them back?

Do they dream of an impossiblitly, a way to regain their living lives, or do they just exist from one eternal moment to the next as best they can?

And when the fierce thirst strikes, what then? Can they pretend to not feel it or do they not bother and rush headlong out in search of their sustenance?

That is their reality. Truth is truth after all, even to one who is a child and is also, sadly, a vampire.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

On Blood & Vampires

As an author of urban fantasy, I have had to make decisions on what type of world in which my characters would live in: Open World, or Closed World. Basically in an Open World scenario humans know that vampires, werewolves, demons, witches etc., exists and they live right along side them. They usually have a government agency which keeps everything in check--so that there's no illegal killing or hunting of humans, that sort of thing.

Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris, and Karen Chance have Open World scenarios in their series.

A Closed World is where very few people know, or suspect that vampires etc., exist, and, in fact, would find it very hard to believe. When Bram Stoker wrote Dracula, he went with a Closed World because the fiedn, Dracula, had to first be discovered and then "destoyed".

In my Sabrina Strong Series I chose a Closed World scenario because it worked better for my story to keep the majority of humans in the dark. One of the first things I learned when beginning to write is that the unknown is scarier than the known. Thus, only those who are within the vampire's circle (i.e. those who work for or are with the vampire), know they exist. This creates a vacuum in which the other mortals exist happily within their own troubles and have no idea something more powerful and dangerous lives right along side them on Earth. Can you imagine what would happen if someone said to you that vampires did exist--and eventually you found out this was true?

Besides, I didn't want to have to create some preternatural agency and play catch-up in my first book, doing a lot of explaining and back-story in the first 100 pages, like Karen Chance has to do in her Cassie Palmer series. I wanted to open up right at the beginning with Sabrina Strong coming face-to-face with a vampire or two (and a werewolf), and bring the reader along for the ride.


Other aspects of the story had to be considered as well, and the Closed World part my have played a part in how I chose to settle on the amount of blood a vampire needs per night.

The vampire's need for blood--his nourishment--his survival depends upon blood, and getting enough of it from a healthy human being. Thinking it over, I considered how a vampire would drink the same person's blood night after night, and what would happen if they did? They die. In some books the human is turned, or as in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, they automatically become vampires. But not in my books. The human doesn't need to die and the bite does not turn them. The proccess is a little different.

So, curious about blood and how much a person has in them, and at what point they expire when there is blood loss, I did my research. It only takes a human being to loose a few pints of blood (20%), where the blood pressure drops, and the pulse quickens. After 30%, the situation becomes serious. A person can go into shock--they will black out unless they are lying down. An average person has about 8-10 pints of blood in their body. It takes 3-4 weeks for the bone marrow to make the extra red cells to replace the loss, depending upon the amount of loss, too. It might be two  months for more than one pint lost.

So, let's say if the average vampire has to consume 2-3 pints of blood a day to remain health (this is one version that I found), they would need--and probably kill--one person a day per vampire. Times that by about three or four vampires, that's about 28 people in a week's time that may die. In a month, that's around 840 people dying from a mysterious loss of blood. Now think of it in terms of 30, 50, or 100 vampires! Eventually there would be very few living people for them to get a nice meal of blood from, unless they began drinking from animals, and then they too would die. See my logic? And if the bodies, or even the missing persons cases began piling up, someone somewhere is gonna say, "What the hell is going on here?"

This is why I decided that I didn't want people dying from lack of blood and went back to re-thinking the whole how-much-blood-does-a-bloodsucker-need-per-night question. Since I'm the writer, I get to say how much, and ignore everyone else, because we're talking fiction here.

So, in my books I have it as a Closed World, (general population doesn't not know vampires exist), I wanted it to have a more happy medium range like 1-2 pints of blood a day, and one pint is pretty much the limit a person can give without having some serous side affects, and probably die. I had the thought that killing humans for blood is not a very efficient way for a vampire to feed, especially when so many are congregated in one area. Even if they stole blood from blood banks, you'd still have to feed an awful lot of vampires on a daily bases, say if they numbered in the thousands in the United States alone.

Alright, so let's say you're a vampire lord, you've got a dozen or more minions below you, you are responsible for these minions, and since you made them, and need them around you to feel all powerful, you have to keep them happy. So, you have to come up with a way of not being discovered, because it would be beneficial to you and your minion's well-being. No one would know you exist, and you don't have to kill humans, yet have them happily making blood donations on a rotating bases. Makes a lot of sense to me. So I didn't want my vampires to be killing machines. It makes for good horror, but it also makes the vampires seem more bent on destroying the world--and humans upon which they feed--and that just didn't seem to make any sense to me. And I didn't want to use the now somewhat tired "synthetic" blood, because that would be like cheating.

Every writer has a different point of view on this, and their own vision on this aspect for their books. For my books I needed a more sophisticated vampire, the vampire who can rub elbows with local government officials, actors, singers etc, and not give away that they would like to bite them (or have sex with them, because sex is just as important to my vampires as the meal, and why not combine the two?) So, the every day human has no idea he may be on their dinner menu.
Taking this into account, and the recovery time for a human for their blood loss--even a pint--I felt that a vampire would be able to count on blood donors. Lots of donors. Where are you gonna get good donors for a vampire--or a whole community of them, you may well ask?

Simple. Pay them. Of course many humans like the sensuous side affect of a vampiric thrall and the bite, and might not even mind being a donor for free.

In my Sabrina Strong Series, Bjorn Tremayne, of Tremayne Inc., produces blood in a bottle. Real Red, Organic Red, to name a few. Depending upon whatever they want to pay, one is 100% human blood, and the others are a blend of animal and human bloods. (This is one of Tremayne's money-makers. Smart vampire, I say.) They will also have their personal donors, and call them "blood dolls", and the human donor can give blood on a rotation of every few weeks.

What keeps this sort of world in check? Who controls the vampires when they get out of line when they "hunt" humans--which is the case with rogue vampires? Tune in next week and I will examine this in detail.

Thanks for dropping by. Have a great weekend!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Rasputin's Gaze & Healing Touch

"Believe in the power of my prayers, and your son will live."

I remember reading about Grigori Efimovich Rasputin in high school. I admit to having an odd attraction to men with beards (my husband has one). But there was more to Rasputin than the beard which drew me in. Maybe it was the raw, hypnotic eyes.

He was called everything from a "miracle worker" to a "holy devil". His gaze was magnetic. When people, especially women, met him, they came under his powerful gaze and could not help but be pulled in. I know that there have been other people in the world who have/had the ability to hypnotize people in an incredible way. Today, hypnotists claim--and I don't doubt--that they can make you quit smoking or loose weight. But Rasptin was much, much more than an hypnotist. He was a holy man who became what the Russians called a "starets". These are religious men who go on pilgrimages, and are given underground places to stay in homes, where they pray continuously, in order to go through something called the "mysterious death of Christ". He attained divine grace through sinning, this included sexual promiscuity, drunkenness, and accepting bribes in return for helping petitioners who flocked to him. This was a particular secret religious sect found in Russia at that time--not something that Rasputin invented. His rise to fame came prior to and during WWI.

When the Tsarina Alexandra finally gave birth to a son, it was deemed a blessing. But she was a carrier of the hemophilia gene, and so her son naturally began suffering of this right away. Many times the little Tsearevich had been bleeding internally, and thought to not live the night. Somehow he would, and caution over how he played became the norm. But at one point, he was so terribly wracked with pain, so pale, his knees drawn to his chest as he lie moaning and crying for days, when finally, through a friend's contacts, Rasputin, the "little father" was brought to the palace. At once he prayed to the icons when he entered the boy's room, and then blessed the boy. For the first time, the young boy opened his eyes and stared at the odd stranger. Rasputin said, "Now, don't be afraid, Alesha, everything is all right again... Look, Alesha," he said, stroking the child's whole body from head to foot, "look, I have driven all your horrid pains away. Nothing will hurt you any more, and tomorrow you will be well again..."

And it worked! No other miracle worker that the royals had petitioned had been able to heal their young son. And Rasputin won the love and trust of the royal couple. Thing was he was not loved by all. Plus he took advantage of his powers and position in the court, having his rivals dismissed under his influence over the Tsarina Alexandra.

I wanted to give a brief summary of who Rasputin was here. There is no doubt that he could heal with a touch and hypnotize even the biggest doubters. Many, who came under his stare felt uncomfortable, and yet were drawn in by it. Rasputin was able to make men nearly mute with his stare.

Sounds to me like a vampire's stare. But it wasn't just his stare, either, even his voice could pull a person in. Let me give you an example from "Rasputin the Holy Devil"

But his glance and speech would change: it was as if an all-devouring sensual desire flamed up in this strange man, his eyes began to blaze, his voice became excited, violent and passionate, confident and insinuating. His glances and words became lewd, cynical, and full of scarcely concealed suggestiveness, until, unexpectedly, his attitude again changed entirely, and he spoke of mystical and religious things with poetic ardour and genuine flaming enthusiasm.

Women could not resist him, in fact they flocked to him, no matter their social status. He cohabited with many.

While Rasputin's life was unusual, and his place in history of Russia during the WWI, is well known. His life came to a violent end. Those who hated him, or were jealous of him, conspired to kill him. He was first poisoned (although this was met with doubts by his daughter who said that her father would not have eaten the cakes that they had laced with rat poison), then he was drowned, but somehow managed to escape the water. What killed him was a bullet to the head--according the the coroner who examined him. I was impressed with how many times they tried to kill Rasputin, and were unable to. Like a vampire, Rasputin was hard to kill.

I think the total combination of who and what Rasputin was, also drew me toward vampires in my early days of discovery. You have to admit Rasputin was an unusual character. I've never come across such a dynamic personality in history who had the ability to charm, coerce, heal, and hypnotize people.