Author A.F. Stewart has managed to accomplish a none-to-easy task in the realm of the vampire novels. She has managed to create a unique and captivating voice in a realm populated mainly by Anne Rice and Laurell K. Hamilton clones substituting melodramatic whining and gratuitous sex for depth and substance.
Chronicles of the Undead offers the reader a closer look at the lives of two Victorian era vampires residing in London, and the people whose lives intersect with theirs, through a series of diary entries. The diaries cover the span of thirty-three years, during which the various authors reveal their own fears and desires through the recording of their thoughts and the descriptions of daily events told through the filter of their own perceptions.
The author's adherence to the diary format seems a little light at first, but after awhile the lack of overly descriptive narrative and meandering dialog becomes a welcome absence, as the characters distill themselves and make the gradual discovery of who and what they are even more interesting. Also, the book's division into entries from different diaries lends a contrast to the writing and perspective that prevents the format from stagnating.
If there is to be a complaint about Chronicle of the Undead, it is that the diary format unavoidably makes for a quick read that leaves the reader somewhat unsatisfied. But then again, good books always leave the reader hungry for more.