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Publisher's Summary

This was the very first vampire thriller! Pure innocence becomes the target of age-old evil. Virtuous Laura has grown up in a solitary castle and longs for a close friend. Her wish seems granted with the arrival of a beautiful and mysterious stranger named Carmilla. A friendship develops but the brooding mood and sexual overtones mar Laura's happiness. Will she escape with her life and spirit?

Megan Follows' brilliant reading perfectly evokes the dramatic atmosphere of this Gothic Victorian tale. This tale was the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula!

Public Domain (P)2010 BBC Audio
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

What listeners say about Carmilla: A Vampyre Tale

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great novella, great reading, censored text

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, but with a caveat: the text has been censored. The prologue, reported by "Dr. Hesselius" -- an occult scholar, a kind of proto-psychoanalyst ("Carmilla" lends itself well to a psychoanalytic reading) -- is missing; and an unpleasantly racist passage from chapter 3, a throwaway remark about a hideous companion of the mysterious women (unnecessary for the story, but necessary for an unabridged edition) has been cut.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Carmilla: A Vampyre Tale?

"Your mother warns you to beware of the assassin!" Mothers lurk on the edges of this tale, all of them vampires. Roger Vadim's take on this dream scene in his adaptation "Blood and Roses" is unforgettable (you can find the sequence online).

Which scene was your favorite?

Laura's first, childhood dream: creepy as hell. And of course, every scene where Carmilla is being languorous.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The very end, after the silly "alliance of fathers" (the weakest part of the novella) has done its job: "The following Spring my father took me a tour through Italy..." It is wonderfully ambivalent: "often from a reverie I have started, fancying I heard the light step of Carmilla at the drawing room door."

Any additional comments?

Megan Follows is the perfect reader for this, it's just sad that the text has been altered: minus one star overall for this.

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Very Old, Very Dark, Very Good

Ok, So you have to remember, this story was written a long time BEFORE Bram Stoker, ever penned his now famous "Dracula". Which in my humble opinion, makes the tale even more intriguing.

Being in that "Carmilla" A Vampyre Tale" was written many, many, years ago. I found that, just like many stories written that era, used a dialect that says alot, without really being direct. In this tone, we find a faint lesbian undertone. Making the charater, Carmilla, that much more creepy.
If you love vampires, this is a must read.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Kept me listening right to the end.

The story rattles along with all the finesse of a bouncy coach ride through Transylvania. I was a little disappointed by the awkward ending -- a somewhat overblown "TA DA!" moment that was a foregone conclusion ten minutes in, but I suppose it may have something to do with when it was written. Still, not a bad addition to the genre for it's day, and the narrator did a nice job -- and sounded the right age -- which was very important to the tale.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Classic Vampire Story with Good Narration!

If you like classic ghost/horror stories, then Carmilla by J.S. Le Fanu is for you! The story is excellently narrated by Megan Follows, whose voice really brings the characters to life. At around 3 hours, it doesn't take long to get through, but it's well worth the money. Check it out!

3 people found this helpful

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The Real Thing!

I simply loved Carmilla, from the moment you begin listening you feel attracted to this story and you need to know how it unravels and then leaves you impressed.
You know the character "Carmilla" has to be something wicked but you can't stop the recording, is addictive and entertaining! A must listen for any vampire story lovers out there!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

simple and chilling.

I can see how the stories have evolved from this story. The mix of folklore and investigation really make the idea of vampires in that time realistic. Very good story. Buy it while it is on sale!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A dreamy reverie

The beautiful and gothic prose flows like poetry. It does not dull upon a second reading.
Some long pauses in the performance that made me question if it had shut off, but not many.

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A Thrilling Tale

I never heard the story of Carmilla and never knew she was before Dracula. This is a lovely story and a new favorite!

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Always a favorite

You cant go wrong with a classic Vampire tale🖤 ive read this a few times.

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Megan Follows is extraordinary!!

I really enjoyed listening to this book. Megan Follows brought all the characters to life!!

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • EGM
  • 07-11-17

Great story, but passages unnecesarily censored.

One of the unsung pioneers of the vampire genre, well worth reading. I love the atmospheric prose and the plot twists, classic and yet very imaginative. The reading is professional and enjoyable, and I enjoyed it even though I believe a British accent would add to the experience. I can't, however, award it five stars because the text is censored, which I find patronising and annoying. Stating that this is an unabridged version is untrue and misleading. My trust in Audible products is diminished by this.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kira
  • 04-21-22

Beautifully Narrated

The narration was beautiful and the story was engaging. I just feel that it got a little confusing

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Natasha
  • 10-23-19

Good story, poor audio

The story itself is one I already know however the audible performance is less exciting! Megan Follows does not do it justice. It doesn’t flow well, unnecessary long pauses, a bit jumbled. I’d stick to reading it yourself.

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  • Rebecca
  • 06-23-22

Spooky AND Sexy

You must come with me, loving me, to death; or else hate me, and still come with me, and hating me through death and after.

I live in your warm life, and you shall die—die, sweetly die—into mine.

Why you must die—everyone—must die; and all are happier when they do…