Vampires: The Occult Truth
Llewellyn Publications, 2002
I’m not quite sure what to think about this book.
The basic historical research about vampires is pretty much what you’d find in any other book about vampire lore. Again, my common gripe about the lack of in-text citations in pagan.occult nonfic can be found here. The bibliography actually had some surprising inclusions–Franz Bardon’s “Initiation in Hermetics” being notable in that respect.
It’s when the author gets into modern-day vampires that things get a little weird.
Konstantinos did say he got some rather….err…strange letters, usually by people who were obviously ganking their life-history from fictional sources, and so these weren’t quoted. But the quotes he did get for the most part struck me as a little ungrounded and melodramatic.
He does go into the physical dangers of blood drinking. Most people these days are aware of blood diseases, but I got a little chuckle at the idea of someone ruining their cape after discovering that enough blood will make one vomit.
His POV on psychic vampirism is a little strange, in that all “intentional” psi-vamps are noncorporeal, and any corporeal psi-vamps are “unintentional” (ie, have no idea what they’re doing.) It seems to draw a lot from the traditional occult view of vampirism a la Dion Fortune. Of course, that could just be part of “the Occult Truth”.
Personally, there’s a part of me that thinks that Konstantinos wrote everything he did (except for Summoning Spirits, which I very much enjoyed) with his tongue firmly planted in his cheek. I think he hit on a particular untapped target audience, found just the right books to toss at them, and is now laughing all the way to the bank. It’s not that he’s not serious about what he’s doing, but there’s an element of the Trickster here as well.
Two bloodstained pawprints out of five.