Children of the Night

  • by Dan Simmons
  • Narrated by George Ralph
  • 14 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In a desolate orphanage in what remains of post-Communist Romania, a desperately ill infant is given the wrong blood transfusion - and flourishes when he's supposed to die. The discovery of his unique immune system may hold the key to the long-awaited cure for cancer and AIDS.For a dedicated American doctor, he promises the medical breakthrough of a lifetime, as well as a very special love she's never been able to find. But he also conceals a shockingly intimate link to a clan of vampires and their legendary leader - the fiend the world calls Vlad Dracula, who, for centuries, has triumphed over countless rival tyrants, including death itself.


What the Critics Say

"Count Dracula kicks off the coffin lid again in this updated vampire tale....the book offers a mesmerizing tour through the ghostly, gray tatters of Romania." (Publishers Weekly)
"Neatly ties the vampire legend into political history to create a new and clever twist to the idea of the vampire's craving for blood." (Library Journal)
"Toothsomely well written." (Kirkus Reviews)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

needs a different reader

I read the print version a few years ago & quite enjoyed it. When I got the audiobook, I was looking forward to many hours' worth of chores being vastly more entertaining....but. The audio version bogs down occasionally, such as during the longer, more detailed CDC research discussions (& I'm a biologist & researcher myself!). The real problem with the audio version is the narrator. Mr Ralph has one of those whiskey/smoky gruff voices which I usually like, but his leaves me wanting to cough & clear my throat repeatedly. Also, he never pauses at appropriate spots --such as when between chapters or drastic scene jumps-- and it can leave the listener disoriented for a moment. Worst of all, when he alters his voice for the male characters, some end up sounding just like Rodney Dangerfield. I kept waiting for ex-husband Tom, who shows up a lot, to say "I don't get no respect!" or "Take my wife --please!" Jerks one out of the dark, suspenseful world of the book, to say the least.
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- Kelly Howard

Masterful! Don't let the bad reviews scare you off

I’m shocked and disappointed that this book got so many bad reviews. I have never read a Dan Simmons book that was less than masterful, and this book is no exception. As always, his research is impeccable, which allows him to make a distant world vivid. The characters are compelling (one of them is from Children of Night, where he is much younger).

Other reviews have complained of boring stretches and romance. Some parts go into biology details, but I found these parts fascinating (and they are important to the story). As for the romance, well, I have no idea why a love interest is a bad thing. The characters are human, after all, and humans have love interests, so it’s quite realistic. But even if you dislike a bit of romance, don’t let that deter you from reading, because it’s actually quite a small aspect of the book.

I enjoyed the reader. None of his voices are irritating, and one of them is done exceedingly well. I feel that his performance enhanced my reading experience.
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- Whyrl

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-01-2008
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio