Book Review: Empire of The Vampire by Jay Kristoff (Spoiler Free)

Jay Kristoff

My mama knew herself, and there’s a fearsome power in that. Knowing exactly who you are and exactly what you’re capable of. Most fold would call it arrogance, I suppose. But most folk are fucking fools.

Kicking off Spooktober with a book I have waited months for to release. Empire of The Vampire is an adult fantasy read. Gore, blood, slaying, killing, slight creepiness, weapons, etc. It is a story about vampires and killing vampires—you know what you are getting into.


It has been twenty-seven long years since the last sunrise. For nearly three decades, vampires have waged war against humanity; building their eternal empire even as they tear down our own. Now, only a few tiny sparks of light endure in a sea of darkness.

Gabriel de León is a silversaint: a member of a holy brotherhood dedicated to defending realm and church from the creatures of the night. But even the Silver Order couldn’t stem the tide once daylight failed us, and now, only Gabriel remains.

Imprisoned by the very monsters he vowed to destroy, the last silversaint is forced to tell his story. A story of legendary battles and forbidden love, of faith lost and friendships won, of the Wars of the Blood and the Forever King and the quest for humanity’s last remaining hope:

The Holy Grail.

My Thoughts

I can’t get over vampires. I though it was a phase, but it is not. This is not a book for children, this is not a YA novel, this is a bloody vampire story. Blood drinking-smutish-slaying of monsters-adventure-vampire tale and I loved it. If you enjoy fantasy stories of epic nature, you’ll like Empire of The Vampire.

In Kristoff’s world vampires are monsters. They are familiar enough to what we know of vampires, but with some twist. They are unable to cross running water, holy water is harmful, silver burns, and a few other things you’ll have to read to find out about. The lore of Kristoff’s vampire and world is worth reading for alone. Similar to his Nevernight series, you only get a taste for what’s to come.

This is not your typical vampire story or fantasy adventure. I have no idea how Kristoff builds the worlds he does, but they are one of a kind. Empire of the Vampire is like Interview With a Vampire and The Name of the Wind. A character is telling their story, but only what they need to tell to the listener. I found myself thinking back to those books as I read Empire of the Vampire. While they are similar in the story telling manor, Kristoff builds something new. Something I hadn’t experienced yet.

Gabriel, the main character, tells his life story in bits and pieces. You learn of Gabriel’s upbringing, adventures, friendships, and time spent with the holy grail. Every story builds a deeper purpose, I loved it. Along with learning about Gabriel, Kristoff introduced many likable characters. You will find yourself interested in the vampires just as much as the non-vampire characters. Kristoff gave us just enough to fall in love with this new world yet withheld so so much (wait till the last 100 pages).

Back to Kristoff’s vampires. I am obsessed. The “family” blood lines, the nature of becoming a vampire, the blood effects–everything. If you like vampire tales, don’t wait, jump into this vampire adventure.

While this book is easily in my top five for 2021, I know there are a few things some readers might dislike. Empire of The Vampire is hefty—700+ pages. Some sections were slow, but that is me nitpicking. By the last page everything had come together perfectly, I have no complaints.

Should you read Empire of The Vampire?

YES, BUT—some might find Empire of the Vampire a bloated tale, but the details all come together which outweigh the length. If you enjoy fantasy, battles, vampires, some romance, and a kickass lore you will find Empire of The Vampire a satisfying read. I think this is a series you should be reading as it releases, do not wait.

Which book did I get?

I preordered the black paged signed edition from Waterstones. I fell in love with that version of the cover. Shipping to the states was cheaper than I thought it would be. The book arrived with a slight crinkle in on the corner, but considering how far it traveled I did not care. I also preordered the Barnes and Noble red cover signed edition.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s