Saturday 15 April 2017

Clare Reviews: The Beast of London by L.D. Goffigan

The Beast of London (Book 1 of the Mina Murray series)Title: The Beast of London
Author: L.D. Goffigan
Series: Mina Murray #1
Format: E-book
Source: Received from the author for an honest review
Pages: 283
Rating: 4.5/5
Blurb: Mina Murray once lived an adventurous life, but after a tragedy in the forests of Transylvania, she left it all behind. Now she has settled into a quiet routine as a schoolteacher in London, engaged to the respectable solicitor Jonathan Harker, attempting to fit into the stuffy upper class London society to which he belongs. 
Her dark past comes careening into her present when Jonathan is abducted by a group of vampires from a society ball. Determined to rescue him, she teams up with her former paramour Abraham Van Helsing and his colleague, Scotland Yard Inspector John Seward. 
As they pursue Jonathan’s abductors from England to the Low Countries and beyond, Mina realizes that Jonathan’s abduction is tied to a larger threat against humanity…

I am a sucker for retellings! Dracula is not one I've really tried before (apart from the rather disastrous Dracula in Love) but the plot of this intrigued me a lot. And L.D. Goffigan definitely followed through on the promise of the blurb. Although the mystery itself didn't really get started until around 30% of the way in I wasn't bored for a second.

The first third of the novel sets up the characters and backgrounds. Mina I instantly adored. She was strong and smart and had so much care for those she was responsible for her. She has a sense of adventure but there is a part of her that wants a normal life as well - understandable after some of the events in her past that we learn about. Although the main mystery doesn't start early on that doesn't mean there isn't plenty of action - from the first chapter we get a sense of what's going to happen and there is an ominous build up that I greatly enjoyed.

The settings were incredibly evocative. London was done incredibly well but with added menace and the historical details were, as far as I can tell, very accurate. And it all felt so very real! I could totally believe that there were vampires! The atmosphere was probably my favourite part of the whole book. Whenever I was reading I felt like I was there with the characters, I could visualise it all so clearly and it definitely made me very absorbed in the story - and made it hard to put down!

Of course there is the dreaded love triangle but I actually didn't mind it (and I hate love triangles). Mina wasn't an annoying character who couldn't make up her mind between two guys. She was in love with Jonathan, and I really believed in that love. But she has also been in love with Abe and had remnants of that love to deal with - especially with their shared history. I won't deny I definitely preferred Abe (who wouldn't) but I didn't find her love for Jonathan unrealistic - there was plenty to love about him. Just not as much as Abe. Besides the romance never took over the plot which I loved.

Overall I was blown away by how much I enjoyed The Beast of London. The characters, setting and plot were all phenomenal and I can't wait to read the next one! Many thanks to L.D. Goffigan for sending me an e-copy of the book to review - because I am very glad I read this!  Honestly - if this book intrigues you at all then please read it! 

You can also find us on Goodreads (Ann and Clare), Facebook and Instagram to keep up with what we are reading.


  1. Awesome review! I can't wait to give this a read!

  2. I'm so disappointed at myself for not discovering this one sooner. I love re-tellings as well and I've never come across a Dracula one! So glad you enjoyed it and I really can't wait to get my hands on it and give it a go!

    Elena @ Book Lady's Reviews

    1. You should definitely check it out! I'm actually not a huge fan of the original Dracula but I loved this! Hope you enjoy it!

  3. This one sounds SO GOOD, already added it to my to-read list when you first talked about it, but your review convinced me even more that I need this in my life. I'm a BIT worried about the love triangle, but it sounds pretty lowkey from your review which is great. I love that the romance doesn't overtake the plot, because the plot sounds incredible. Can't wait to get my hands on this. Wonderful review!

    Veronika @ The Regal Critiques

    1. Its not the worst love triangle ever - I have my favourite obviously but I could honestly see her being happy with either of them and its so not a focus of the plot which is definitely the hunt for vampires (way more important)! Thanks!