This is bugging me because it's a random detail I remember that's stuck in my head. The main character is entering the lair of one or more vampires and happens upon a box of what seems to be sand and bits of metal, which they eventually realize used to be a piece of electronics, but something about the entropic nature of vampires had caused the silicon in the chips to revert to sand.

I'm pretty sure I read it somewhere between 2000 and 2015 as a physical book, in English. Vampires were inherently antithetical to life, and spread if not exterminated.

1 Answer 1


In Ben Aaronovitch's 'Rivers of London' series, any use of magic tends to return silicon-based electronics back into their original form i.e. sand. In the first book of the series they investigate a house occupied by vampires.

  • 2
    And i have read that series, so that is probably it!
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Feb 19, 2020 at 22:59
  • 1
    Curious, does he provide any explanation for why windows, mirrors, aluminum, even steel etc wouldn't turn into sand or unrefined elements as well? are electronics themselves presented as a form of magic? Commented Feb 20, 2020 at 17:21
  • @LassiKinnunen Jim Butcher's Dresden Files has some complex interference between magic and sophisticated networking and digital electronics technologies. Cell phones a no go. VW Beetles marginally Ok.
    – Lexible
    Commented Feb 21, 2020 at 2:46
  • A common explanation (used in the Coldfire Trilogy) is that as technology gets more complicated, our belief in it wanes, and we're more likely to subconsciously either make it not work as well (because we expect problems) or in this case it becomes useless (because our brains keep transmuting it closer to the simple image in our head). :-P I don't know that Aaronovitch ever stated the exact mechanics.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Jan 1, 2021 at 15:42

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.