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Bela Kiss was described as a handsome, charming young man. Successful and wealthy, admired and liked by his neighbors and the general populous. He lived in Cinkota, Hungary which is near Budapest. No one connected the disappearance of young women from Budapest to him. Then he was drafted into the army to fight for his country in the first world war. He was declared missing in action and then killed. His landlord, wanting to rent out his property where Kiss used to live came to investigate, seeing large barrels he decided to open them, Kiss had told others the barrels contained gasoline, he was storing them to distribute the gasoline to farmers when gasoline was rationed. The landlord didn’t find gasoline in the barrels.
I always say, yeah he was a good neighbor until somebody finds the bodies in the basement, in this case the bodies were in the barrels. The bodies were also found with puncture marks in the neck, thereby giving Kiss the reputation of being a ‘vampire’, which was not an unusual occurrence in that part of the world. But it’s not known what he did with the blood, some felt he drained the blood to aid in preservation of the bodies, some believed he was really a vampire.
This is very short book, there is no history of Kiss, mainly because nothing is really known about him, official records are confusing and at time contradictory, local legend is just that, legend no way to prove. The author brings out what is known and speculated, making sure to inform us what is what. I found it informative but not all that interesting, not really a waste because it took me about 2 hours to read it.