Monday, October 11, 2010

Book Review: Out of the Transylvania Night, by Aura Imbarus, PhD

“I’d grown up in the land of Transylvania, homeland to Dracula, Vlad the Impaler, and, worse, the Communist dictator, Nicolae Ceauşescu -- who turned Romania into a land of gray-clad zombies who never dared to show their individuality, and where neighbors became informants, and the securitate made people disappear. Daylight empowered the regime to encircle us like starved wolves, and so night had always been the time to steal a bit of freedom. As if bred into our Transylvanian blood, we were like vampires who came to life after sundown!”

In December 1989, Aura Imbarus and her parents were Christmas shopping in Transylvania when sniper fire broke out. It was the beginning of a revolution that challenged one of the most draconian regimes in the Soviet bloc. Dictator Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife were eventually assassinated, but the Romanian people continued to be plagued by harsh conditions and poverty. Aura was miraculously granted a green card, and she and her husband, Michael, fled to the United States in May 1997. There, they achieved all the trappings of the “American Dream,” with a beautiful home, cars, and more. But when a series of tragedies hit, Aura’s marriage crumbled. In the aftermath, she realized that she must strike a balance between her identity as a Romanian and her life as an American, as well as rebuild the life -- and the love -- that she had lost.

With themes ranging from the pursuit of happiness and the American Dream, to the immigration experience and the struggle to “keep up with the Joneses,” Out of the Transylvania Night is a riveting Cinderella story that Olympic gold medalist Nadia Comaneci has said “shows the degree to which we are all willing to live lives centered on freedom, hope, and an authentic sense of self. Truly a love story!”

I was fascinated by Aura’s story, both by her life in Transylvania and then her subsequent move to the United States. Most people would imagine that a glamorous life in California would have solved all of Aura’s problems, but it only brought on a new set of difficulties. Through it all, the author bravely fought for happiness and a purpose for her life. This memoir is not to be missed!

You can find more information about author Dr. Aura Imbarus at and her book, Out of the Transylvania Night, at

DISCLOSURE: I was hired by the author to conduct a blog tour for this fantastic book, but all opinions expressed here are my own. I highly enjoyed and recommend this book. As an Amazon affiliate, I receive a small commission on sales made through the Amazon link at left.


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