For Whom the Bell Tolls by Shane KP O’Neill
The Dracula Chronicles: For Whom The Bell Tolls by Shane KP O’Neill is a very well written historical account of the early days of Vlad Dracula in Transylvania from 1431 onwards. Although young Vlad will later on become a Vampire and the figure that inspired other Dracula stories, O’Neill sticks with this book to the historic figure and describes only the first years of Vlad’s existence.
Introductory chapters introduce the theme of the First Great War of the Angels, of Lucifer and his great plan to find the perfect human to carry out his evil plan. The fight between good and evil forces has come to the earth plane and finds itself in the duality which is being set up between a gypsy boy called Andrei and Vlad Dracula junior.
Vlad Dracul senior is the Voivode of Wallachia and at the time in conflict with the Turks. In that regard the book is an excellent account of the historical and political dynamics and dramas on the Balkan and Europe of the time and worth reading for the well researched and competently written historical account alone. The detailed descriptions of the politics and customs of the time are amazing.
This provides the setting for the coming of age of young Vlad and his ‘good’ counter part Andrei. Vlad is being held hostage by the Turks and during this time has his first romantic and sexual encounters while his father is struggling with both, his allies and his enemies in the Balkan. The relationships between father and son, the son and his captives and the individual characterisations are way beyond what a fantasy / paranormal book might offer. The writing is of literary class.
O’Neill has done a fantastic job at presenting us with the historical Dracula as opposed to the purely fictional books about Dracula, which distinguishes him from less ambitious and accomplished works in the genre.
Dark and atmospheric but without any actual vampires this is an amazing and very unique book that hopefully will appeal to the fans of the vampire genre as much as it did to this satisfied fan of historical fiction.
Read on for more about Shane and this historical novel!
For Whom the Bell Tolls
The battle for souls has raged since the truce that followed the First Great War of the Angels. God has struck the ultimate blow and sacrifice to gain the advantage and defeat His fallen angel and estranged son, Lucifer. As Lucifer stands at the foot of the Cross that drains the last ounce of life from Christ and eradicates man’s sins, he realises that his work must begin anew.
In time, he comes to understand that his only chance to win this battle will be to destroy the institution of the Catholic Church to turn man against God, once and for all. He searches for more than a millennium for the candidate to see his plan through to an end and finally discovers the one that can cast that final blow.
On a cold night in December 1431 in Sighisoara an old gypsy woman delivers a prophecy to the great Vlad Dracul. She tells him he is about to sire two sons, one an angel and the other a devil.
He returns to his fortress just as his wife bears him a son, whom he names Vlad. In the very same moment across the country on the border between Transylvania and Hungary a gypsy girl gives birth to another son, Andrei. The die is cast. The twin souls are born. The young Vlad Dracula becomes the instrument of the forces of Darkness. To balance this, the baby Andrei is blessed by the angels and bestowed with awesome powers.
This is their story.
Shane KP O’Neill
Shane KP O’Neill is the writer of The Dracula Chronicles, a new and exciting series adding a new dimension to the Dracula myth. He has begun the series with a later Chronicle to give his readers the vampire first. Chronicle #1, For Whom The Bell Tolls, will follow to take you back to the beginning. For Whom The Bell Tolls is due for release in November, 2013.
The author developed a fascination with Dracula from an early age. Like many others he was enthralled by Christopher Lee’s portrayal of him on the big screen. It was in his late teens that he discovered Dracula the man and the love affair began from there. An avid lover of history, he studied the period in which the real historical Vlad Dracula lived, 15th Century Balkan, for many years. It followed from there then that with his love of writing he would always choose Dracula as his subject. He built a concept and premise where he could accommodate both Dracula the vampire and Dracula the man
Away from writing, the author has a wide range of interests. He reads a lot of books from a wide variety of authors though his main interest lies in the horror genre. His love of books is matched only by his love of the countryside and of course, his family. As an added note, he has lived and travelled all over the world. He has a love for all things historical, with a particular fascination for medieval Europe. Anywhere he travels he likes to search out locations with an historical interest and will always hunt for the ruins of an old castle before heading to the beach.
You can buy The Dracula Chronicles: For Whom The Bell Tolls at Amazon.
You can follow Shane at these links: