Title: Blood Countess (Lady Slayers #1)
Author: Lana Popović
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Horror
Publisher: Amulet Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Release Date: January 28, 2020
A historical YA horror novel based on the infamous real-life inspiration for Countess Dracula
In 16th century Hungary, Anna Darvulia has just begun working as a scullery maid for the young and glamorous Countess Elizabeth Báthory. When Elizabeth takes a liking to Anna, she’s vaulted to the dream role of chambermaid, a far cry from the filthy servants’ quarters below. She receives wages generous enough to provide for her family, and the Countess begins to groom Anna as her friend and confidante. It’s not long before Anna falls completely under the Countess’s spell—and the Countess takes full advantage. Isolated from her former friends, family, and fiancé, Anna realizes she’s not a friend but a prisoner of the increasingly cruel Elizabeth. Then come the murders, and Anna knows it’s only a matter of time before the Blood Countess turns on her, too.
This was a creepy story inspired by a real woman.
Elizabeth Báthory was a real noblewoman who lived in the sixteenth century. She was the inspiration for Dracula because of her bloodlust. She was a serial killer who tortured many women.
This story follows Anna, who is from a small village. She goes to work for Elizabeth, and she is so proud of this job that will bring much needed money to her family. However, she soon learns that being with Elizabeth means witnessing and taking part in the torture and murder of girls who she used to call her friends. The story introduces Elizabeth as a misunderstood woman who is surrounded by rumors, before her true behavior is revealed.
Some parts of this story were quite gory and horrific. Elizabeth was relentless in her torture. It makes it all the more creepy to think that she is based on a real woman.
At first, I thought this was going to be a series about Elizabeth. Based on the ending, I believe this series will be about various “lady slayers” throughout history. I’m curious to see who will be in the next book.
Thank you Amulet Books for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
What to read next:
The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White
Cadaver and Queen (Cadaver and Queen #1) by Alisa Kwitney
Have you read Blood Countess? What did you think of it?