Birth of a Killer, Paperback
4.5 out of 5 (2 ratings)


Following the massive success of the Demonata series, Darren Shan is back where it all started - telling the life story of the vampire Larten Crepsley.

Spanning centuries and continents, taking in sea voyages, murder, war and love, this is the epic, bloodsoaked tale of a vampire who started out a nobody...and ended up changing the world forever.

For every vampire, the just the beginning. When terrible events force young Larten Crespley to flee his home he finds himself alone in the world.

Then he meets the mysterious Seba Nile, who introduces him to the ways of the vampire clan.

But will Larten turn his back on humanity and join a world from which there can be no return...?

So begins the blood-soaked tale of a vampire who starts out a nobody ...but will change the world forever.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Horror & ghost
  • ISBN: 9780007315871



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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

Author Darren Shan recognises a money spinner when he creates one - following on from the <i>Cirque Du Freak</i> saga with the self-titled teen-turned-vampire, Shan returns to the beginning to deliver the story of Larten Crepsley. Young Larten's childhood is suitably dramatic, and after fleeing for his life, he meets the vampire Seba Nile in a crypt and becomes his assistant. The similarities with Darren's saga are obvious, but the fun is in the details - why Mr Crepsley has orange hair and likes spiders, where his talent for prestidigitation came from, and his own trials as a vampire's assistant. His story is enjoyable, but as I suspect Mr Shan is aware, fans would read anything about Darren's short-tempered, sarcastic master! Can't wait for the rest of the series.

Review by

Birth of a killer is the first book in the Saga of Larten Crepsley by Darren Shan which in turn is a prequel to the Saga of Darren Shan.This series can be read by them selves but I would suggest that you will get more out of them if you have read the Saga of Darren Shan first, as many of the vampire customs, characters and locations will be familiar. Also there are lots of situations and small details that are alluded to in the Saga of Darren Shan that suddenly make far more sense as you read this book. I myself chose to read this book because Larten Crepsley was my favourite character from the Saga of Darren Shan and I was eager to read about his life.This book mostly focuses on Lartens young life. The reason why he chose to leave his home and family to follow the vampire Seba Nile and become his assistant, what his life as an assistant was like, how he became friends with Hibernus Tall (which will only be relevant to you if you have read the Saga of Darren Shan) and what his first couple of years as a vampire were like.While this book wasn’t the best of Darrens offerings it was laugh out loud funny in parts and a interesting read. It gave me a greater understanding of the characters that I had grown to love in the Saga of Darren Shan and it even offers up an explanation of why Larten often uses the name Vur Horston and why his hair is an unnatural orange colour. My only criticism of this book would be that I would have liked it to be a little more detailed with a few less jumps. Huge chunks of Lartens life are simply skipped and some pivotal conversations and events are only mentioned, but would have been interesting to read in detail. That being said this is only one quarter of the story and with previous books I’ve noticed that adult readers get far more out of Darren’s Sagas when reading them as a whole. I will be eagerly reading the next instalment, Ocean of Blood straight away!

Also in the The Saga of Larten Crepsley series