Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco

hunting price draculaHunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco

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Bizarre murders are discovered in the castle of Prince Vlad the Impaler, otherwise known as Dracula. Could it be a copycat killer… or has the depraved prince been brought back to life?

Following the grief and horror of her discovery of Jack the Ripper’s true identity, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has no choice but to flee London and its memories. Together with the arrogant yet charming Thomas Cresswell, she journeys to the dark heart of Romania, home to one of Europe’s best schools of forensic medicine…and to another notorious killer, Vlad the Impaler, whose thirst for blood became legend.

But her life’s dream is soon tainted by blood-soaked discoveries in the halls of the school’s forbidding castle, and Audrey Rose is compelled to investigate the strangely familiar murders. What she finds brings all her terrifying fears to life once again.

I don’t think there is a better book to be reviewed on Halloween? Hope everyone is having a wonderful one, and if you’re celebrating it, hope you have some fantastic tricks and treats!

Like, it’s a really high four crowns?

When I first picked up Stalking Jack the Ripper, truthfully, it was always my intention to try it out for the hype. The first time, I had some struggles with it due to the time I decided to pick it up with and the second time that I picked it up, I fared so much better with it – but truthfully, the only reason I picked it up was to get to this one. I did a really in-depth research into Bram Stoker’s inspiration for his novel Dracula, so I was more than a little excited to see the setting of Romania for this and the dark and spooky Dracula might have been brought back to life. I couldn’t wait for this one, and I knew I just had to get my hands on it just in time for Halloween.

This book was breathtaking in its atmosphere and setting. Maniscalco created such a spooky, dark scene, and I was SO in love. It had this innately spooky feeling to it, and I actually felt like I was there. Maniscalco shone in her writing here, and she created exactly the kind of mood that this story needed to have. It was perfection.

The mystery was actually quite nicely done as well. One of my biggest gripes in the first book was the fact that I called the killer the first time that the killer walked onto the page. In this story, I was kept guessing the entire time. There was one person that I was fully convinced was the killer the entire time, and I was proven wrong. I kind of spoiled myself on it by accident, but I was surprised by it still and would have not guessed. She definitely crafted it quite well, and I super enjoyed it.

The characters were quite interesting as well. I still enjoyed Audrey Rose as our leading lady, and while Cresswell continued to crack me up, I think I did miss a little bit of his spark in his book. But he really did have some fantastic wit in this story. Their romance was a bit of a mixed bag for me. I really enjoyed certain parts, but then I got conflicted during others. I did like the balance of trying to figure out their feelings and the need to solve the crime, which sometimes is a struggle. I did like the new additions to this book, and I’m so hoping that Daciana will be making an appearance in the third book. She was definitely a fun part in this book.

I think the waters in and near Romania would be a little too chilly for this mermaid?

The only main gripe that I had with this book was the fact that I think it really could have dealt with fare few pages. The story unfolded over a nice pacing, but I thought that it just started to drag at certain parts. I thought that I was making a dent but then realized I was only 100 pages in. I think the story could have been tightened up a bit and it would have really kept me in love, love, love mode.

Overall, this is the perfect read for Halloween and the fall season. It was fun, spooky, and wonderfully atmospheric. Maniscalco can definitely craft a setting, atmosphere, and a mood when writing, and I can’t wait to see what she will be delivering next. I was always kept guessing with this story, and I did enjoy the characters quite a bit. There were a few minor issues, but I think overall, it was quite good. Four crowns and an Ariel rating!


16 thoughts on “Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco

    1. Okay, I DNF’d the first book, too, and I ended up giving it like 3 stars. I wasn’t the biggest fan of it, but I did enjoy the characters. The second book really ramps up the setting, the mystery (I didn’t call it this time within 2 seconds or at all), and the writing. If you weren’t a fan of those in the first one, I would recommend giving it another try because all of those elements were really good in this one and I super enjoyed it. However, the characters were basically the same, so if you weren’t a fan of them in Stalking, I wouldn’t bother picking it up again.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahahahah yes! XD The hype will do it to you every time. XD I will admit that you kind of just need to get through the first one to end up to the second one which is the real shining star so far of the series.


    1. Yes yes! No spoilers for Rendz! 😀 But yesssssssssssss. He definitely has some of the well in the Cresswell ship. 😉 Which is fantastic. I can’t wait to see what you think of this series, because I do think Rendz would enjoy. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I agree with so much here! I also adored the atmosphere (it’s a setting that isn’t used much nowadays, which was awesome), and I’m so glad the mystery kept you guessing. I love mysteries, so while I didn’t rule it out, I was still quite surprised.
    Audrey and Thomas’ relationship needed a bit better pacing, for me. It was too fast in my opinion. But this is the author’s first series, so I can understand some of the speedy relationship writing. I still think they’re a more realistic crime-solving duo though. Also, I think Thomas is likely a very difficult character to write. There are a lot of facets to his personality, so it may strike an unequal balance here and there, which I can understand.
    Daciana was amazing! I really liked her character here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSss. I super agree, Kate! The setting was so cool, and I do love an underutilized setting. 😉 And I’m glad that it kept you surprised especially since the first one didn’t give us much pause. Yes! I do agree with the relationship. It could slow down a bit. And yesssssss! I do hope Daciana pops out again! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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