Gavner Purl

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Gavner Purl
Gavner Purl.jpg
Gender Male
Species Vampire
Age Just past 100
Relatives Mother: Yasmin
Adoptive father: Larten Crepsley
Adoptive mother: Alicia
Status Deceased (Book series)
Alive (Movie)
Background Information
Book Universe The Saga of Darren Shan
The Saga of Larten Crepsley
First Book Appearance The Vampire's Assistant
First Movie Appearance Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant
Acted By Willem Dafoe

Gavner Purl was an old friend of Larten Crepsley's. He is a Vampire General.

In the Books[edit]


Gavner Purl was found by Larten Crepsley after he slaughtered the crew and passengers, aboard a ship Larten was traveling. Larten murdered them for killing his companion Malora, a young girl who had fallen in love with Larten.

Because Larten had killed his parents, he felt responsible for young Gavner. Once they were near the shore of land, Larten with Gavner in arms took a row boat and made for shore, looking for death.

Whilst looking for a nice place to die as it were, Larten stumbled upon the legendary palace of Perta Vin-Grahl. Here Larten intend to leave young Gavner to die and attempted to throw himself into a chasam. Desmond Tiny saved his life and gave him second chance, and also named Gavner Purl.

Years later Larten had fallen in love with a human woman called Alicia, and she took Gavner on as her own.

After Tanish Eul, a greedy cowardly Vampire framed Larten Crepsley of the murder of a young woman to save his own life, Larten was forced to leave Gavner and Alicia.

11 years later Larten found Tanish and Gavner, Tanish had made Gavner his assistant. Larten sent Tanish off to his death by the hands of Vancha March. Gavner who saw Tanish as his surrogate father wanted to kill Larten.

Larten informed Gavner of Tanish's acts and of the fact that Larten killed Gavner's parents. He gave Gavner to opportunity to pass judgement on him for killing Gavner's real parents.

Gavner could not bring him self to do it, and after Larten tried to coax him into joining Vancha as his assistant. He chose to stay with Larten.


Gavner is described as a medium sized man with a scarred face. Gavner first appears visiting Mr. Crepsley at the Cirque du Freak. It is here he learns of Darren's existence as a half-vampire and befriends the boy. He reveals many details about Mr. Crepsley and states that he is around 200 years old, also calling Larten Crepsley a "stuffy old bat" He then flits off on other business.

Gavner reappears in the fourth book, Vampire Mountain, when he pretends to attack Darren and Mr. Crepsley in a way station. He then accompanies them to Vampire Mountain and helps Darren with several challenges, including the Trials of Initiation.

After Darren fails, he and Kurda Smahlt help Darren to escape. They are attacked by Vampaneze and Gavner and Kurda fend them off while Darren escapes. Darren returns to help, but Kurda suddenly rips Gavner's belly open with a knife revealing himself a traitor. Gavner succumbs to the wounds, using his last breath to apologize to Darren for all of the snoring he did along the trek to Vampire Mountain. He dies shortly after.

His body is found wedged beneath two rocks in the same cavern he'd been murdered in and cremated in a funeral after the battle in the tunnels.

Film portrayal[edit]

Willem Defoe as Gavner Purl

Gavner is portrayed by Willem Dafoe, and his outward appearance in the film is nothing like in the book series. In the film, he is slender, with an unscarred face and a thin mustache. He also seems a bit more uptight in the film and less friendly. Larten and Gavner are good friends in both the book series and the film.


  • He uses his last breath to apologize to Liz Carr for all of his snoring.

"Ssorry iif mmy sn-snoring kept you... awake." Gavner Purl's final words.

  • Gavner owned a pair of yellow boxers with pink elephants stitched into them. They are revealed during the trek to vampire mountain, and eventually lead up to Mr.Crepsley's first outburst of laughter Darren had ever witnessed.
  • The yellow boxers were actually a present from woman called Liz Carr, whom he loved dearly. When she left him, she had left him the boxers as a present. The link to the story that reveals this secret is: .



Short Stories[edit]