1810 England, the height of the Napoleonic wars. It was thought that humans walked the path of enlightenment leaving monsters and dark things behind. However, those monsters and night stalkers merely hide in the darkness, as a young maid, Bernadette, soon finds out.
Supposedly vampire folklore originates outside of Romania; prior to the Crusades those stories came with nomads traveling into Romania from the North and Northeast. Once in Romania, these tales thrived and became folklore. There are creatures with similar characteristics out in the world, the Alp for instance, but the vampire is rather unique. The stories made their way into Britain, but they were only really prevalent in the early 1700's inciting riots and disturbances as fear of vampires erupted. The first piece of vampire literature that I remember hearing about is John William Polidori's "The Vampyre" (published in 1819); Polidori is thought to be the father of romantic vampire literature. Next is Bram Stoker's Dracula (published in 1897) which brought the vampire, Dracula in particular to the attention of the populace. Movies and such abounded in the 20th century, becoming increasingly popular; especially in the past 30 with the advent of Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire (published 1976) and the creation of The Masquerade series of card games, video game and books, Hellsing (manga and anime), Van Hellsing (movie) and the recent culmination of Twilight.
I don't usually like vampire stories but I like this comic very much, but that's probably because it's more interesting. Books? Well, Twilight is an insult to the word in my opinion but there are a few out there I have enjoyed.
There is one out there that makes the vampire habits actually come from a virus and it makes the carriers horny, since it has to travel by saliva or other fluids coming from the carrier. How they explained sunlight versus vampire was that those fully infected by the virus would come to despise the things that they used to love so, since humans love light, they came to hate the sun. I believe the book is called Peeps. Check it out if you have time. It's pretty interesting.
Carmilla is one of the first female vampire stories.
there is an actual disease that is essentially an allergy to sunlight, "Some people are sensitive to sunlight; this is known as photosensitivity. Photosensitivity may produce a rash, which is known by the general term, photodermatosis.
Patients may not associate their skin complaint with exposure to light. It is not always the bright summer sun which is responsible; some people also react to sunlight in winter, and very sensitive subjects may even be affected by fluorescent lamps indoors."