CBR Editor Brian Gallagher has had a book published – The Return of Captain Vampire. It’s a collection of his stories published in the yearly Black Coat Press anthology series Tales of the Shadowmen. The book series features Russian vampire Boris Liatoukine’s – known and feared as ‘Captain Vampire’ – exploits in stories that take us from 1830 to 2024, covering various moments in European history.
The character first appeared in the classic 1879 ‘Captain Vampire’ by Belgian writer Marie Nizet. The Tales of the Shadowmen are stories featuring old characters from fantasy and pulp fiction – primarily French ones. Captain Vampire comes across Dracula, Van Helsing, Orlok (Nosferatu) the Vampire City, Carmilla, Rasputin, Von Bork, the KGB and the Countess Irina Petrovski – she will be familiar from those who have seen the classic 1972 film Horror Express. No need to know the back stories of any of the characters, the tales are self-explanatory.
Many of the stories have a strong Central European theme. There are some Croatian connections that appear A number of scenes take place in Croatia: Dubrovnik in 1979, Zagreb in 2024, but perhaps the main point of interest is the short appearance of notorious Croatian vampire Jure Grando in the very first story, ‘The City of the Nosferatu’. Grando features in Istrian folkore, and here his cameo appearance is as a Baron imprisoned in Zagreb. What happens when Captain Vampire meets him?
If you enjoy vampire fiction or fantasy adventure with a political/historical tinge –the Vampire Captain deals with human and vampire politics including running for the Russian presidency – then ‘The Return of Captain Vampire’ could well be for you. At the very least it will help pass the time for those you waiting for the last Games of Thrones novel. See also this review at the Pulp.net.
The book is available from all the national Amazon sites including these links: