Blood 2021 Communion: A Tale of Prince outlet sale Lestat (Vampire Chronicles) sale

Blood 2021 Communion: A Tale of Prince outlet sale Lestat (Vampire Chronicles) sale

Blood 2021 Communion: A Tale of Prince outlet sale Lestat (Vampire Chronicles) sale
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In this spellbinding novel, Lestat, rebel outlaw, addresses the tribe of vampires, telling us the mesmerizing story of how he became prince of the vampire world, and of the formation of the Blood Communion, and how his vision for the Children of the Universe to thrive as one, came to be.

    Lestat takes us from his ancestral castle in the snow-covered mountains of France to the verdant wilds of lush Louisiana, with its lingering fragrances of magnolias and night jasmine; from the far reaches of the Pacific’s untouched islands to the 18th-century city of St. Petersburg and the court of the Empress Catherine. He speaks of his fierce battle of wits and words with the mysterious Rhoshamandes, proud Child of the Millennia, reviled outcast for his senseless slaughter of the legendary ancient vampire Maharet, avowed enemy of Queen Akasha, who refuses to live in harmony at court and who threatens all Lestat has dreamt of . . .

Review

Praise for Anne Rice and The Vampire Chronicles:

“[Rice’s] undead characters are utterly alive.” —The New York Times Book Review
 
“No one writing today matches [Anne Rice''s] deftness with the erotic.” — The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
 
“Anne Rice will live on through the ages of literature. . . . To read her is to become giddy as if spinning through the mind of time, to become lightheaded as if our blood is slowly being drained away.” — San Francisco Chronicle
 
“Fans old and new will find this book an effusive celebration of a saga now more than forty years in the making.” — Publishers Weekly

“Bloody marvelous.” — Time
 
“Rice never lost touch with the exuberant, often witty, and always fearless voice of irrepressible vampire Lestat de Lioncourt.” — BookPage
 
“Immense and rich.” — Elle
 
“Anne Rice is the queen of sexy vampire fiction.” — Cosmopolitan
 
“Lestat is . . . an engaging character who manages to live up to his own hype.” — The Boston Globe
 
“Popular fiction of the highest order.” — USA Today

About the Author

ANNE RICE is the author of thirty-six books, including the fifteen books in the Vampire Chronicles series. She lives in La Quinta, California.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter 1

I’m the vampire Lestat. I’m six feet tall, have blue-gray eyes that sometimes appear violet, and a lean athletic build. My hair is blond and thick and hangs to my shoulders, and over the years it has become lighter so that at times it seems pure white. I’ve been alive on this earth for more than two hundred fifty years and I am truly immortal, having survived any number of assaults on my person, and my own suicidal recklessness, only becoming stronger as the result.

My face is square, my mouth full and sensual, my nose insignificant, and I am perhaps one of the most conventional looking of the Undead you’ll ever see. Almost all vampires are beautiful. They are picked for their beauty. But I have the boring appeal of a matinee idol rescued by a fierce and engaging expression, and I speak a brand of easy rapid English that’s contemporary—after two centuries of accepting English as the universal language of the Undead.

Why am I telling you all this, you might ask—you, the members of the Blood Communion, who know me now as the Prince. Am I not the Lestat so vividly described in Louis’s florid memoir? Am I not the same Lestat who became a super rock star for a brief time in the 1980s, publicizing the secrets of our tribe in film and song?

Yes, I am that person, most certainly, perhaps the only vampire known to just about every blood drinker on the planet by name and by sight. Yes, I made those rock videos that revealed our ancient parents, Akasha and Enkil, and how we might all perish if one or both of them were destroyed. Yes, I wrote other books after my autobiography; and yes, I am indeed the Prince now ruling from my Château in the remote mountains of France.

But it’s been many a year since I addressed you directly, and some of you weren’t born when I penned my autobiography. Some of you weren’t Born to Darkness until very recently, and some of you might not believe in the story of the Vampire Lestat as it’s been related to you—or the history of how Lestat became the host to the Sacred Core of all the tribe, and then finally, released from that burden, survived as the ruler upon whom order and survival now depend.

Make no mistake, the books Prince Lestat and Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis were penned by me, and all that they related has indeed happened, and those many blood drinkers described in the two books are accurately portrayed.

But the time has come for me once again to address you intimately and to shape this narrative in my own inimitable and informal fashion as I seek to relate to you all that I think you should know.

And the first thing which I must tell you is that I write now for you—for my fellow blood drinkers, the members of the Blood Communion—and no one else.

Of course this book will fall into mortal hands. But it will be perceived as fiction, no matter how obvious it may be that it is not. All the books of the Vampire Chronicles have been received as fiction the world over, and always have been. The few mortals who interact with me in the vicinity of my ancestral home believe me to be an eccentric human who enjoys impersonating a vampire, the leader of a strange cult of like-minded vampire impersonators who gather under my roof to engage in romantic retreats from the busy modern world. This remains our greatest protection, this cynical dismissal of us as real, true monsters, in an era that just might be more dangerous to us than any other through which we’ve lived.

But I will not dwell on the matter in this narrative. The story I’m going to tell has little or nothing to do with the modern world. It’s a tale as old as tale telling itself, about the struggle of individuals to find and defend their place in a timeless universe, alongside all the other children of the earth and the sun and the moon and the stars.

But it is important for me to say—as this story begins—that I was as resentful and confused by my human nature as I’d ever been.

If you do go back to my autobiography, you’ll likely see how much I wanted humans to believe in us, how boldly I shaped my narrative as a challenge: Come, fight us, wipe us out! There ran in my Frenchman’s blood only one acceptable version of glory: making history among mortal women and men. And as I prepared for my one and only rock concert in San Francisco in the year 1984, I did dream of an immense battle, an apocalyptic confrontation to which elder blood drinkers would be awakened and drawn irresistibly, and young ones incited with fury, and the mortal world committed to stamping out our evil once and for all.

Well, nothing came of that ambition. Nothing at all. The few brave scientists who insisted they had seen living proof of our existence met with personal ruin, with only a precious few being invited to join our ranks, at which point they passed into the same invisibility which protects us all.

Over the years, being the rebel and the brat that I am, I created another great sensation, described in my memoir, Memnoch the Devil, and that too did invite mortal scrutiny, a scrutiny which might have seduced yet more hapless individuals to destroy their lives arguing that we were real. But that brief damage to the fabric of the reasonable world was corrected immediately by clever blood drinkers who removed all forensic evidence of us from laboratories in New York City, and within a month all the excitement stirred up by me and my Blessed Veil of Saint Veronica was over, with the relic itself gone to the crypts of the Vatican in Rome. The Talamasca, an ancient Order of Scholars, managed to obtain it after that, and subsequent to their acquiring it, the veil was destroyed. There’s a story to all that, a small one anyway, but you won’t find it here.

The point is—for all the fuss and bother—we remained as safe in the shadows as we’d ever been.

This story—to be precise—is about how we vampires of the world came together to form what I now call the Blood Communion, and how I came not only to be Prince, but to be the true ruler of the tribe.

One can assume a title without really accepting it. One can be anointed a prince without reaching for the scepter. One can agree to lead without really believing in the power of oneself to do it. We all know these things to be true.

And so it was with me. I became Prince because the elders of our tribe wanted me to do it. I possessed something of a charismatic ease with the idea, which others did not share. But I did not really examine what I was doing when I accepted the title, or commit to it. Instead, I clung to a selfish passivity in the matter, assuming that at any moment I might tire of the entire enterprise and walk away. After all, I was still invisible and insignificant, an outcast, a monster, a predatory demon, Cain the slayer of his brothers and sisters, a phantom pilgrim on a spiritual journey so narrowly defined by my vampire existence that whatever I discovered would never be of relevance to anybody, except as poetry, as metaphor, as fiction, and I should take comfort in that fact.

Oh, I enjoy being the Prince, don’t get me wrong. I loved the rapid and totally egregious restoration of my ancestral Château and the little village which lay below it on the narrow mountain road that led to nowhere—and it was an undoubted pleasure to see the great hall filled each evening with preternatural musicians and dancers, flashing exquisite white skin, shimmering hair, costumes of extraordinary richness, and countless jewels. One and all of the Undead were and are now most welcome under my roof. The house has innumerable salons through which you can wander, rooms in which you might settle to watch films on giant flat screens, and libraries in which you might meditate in silence or read. Beneath it are crypts that have been expanded to hold perhaps the entire tribe in darkness and safety, even were the Château itself attacked in the daylight hours and burnt over our heads.

I like all this. I like welcoming everyone. I like taking the young fledglings in hand and welcoming them to our closets from which they can take any clothing they need or desire. I like watching them shed their rags and burn them in one of the many fireplaces. I like hearing everywhere around me the soft uneven rumble of preternatural voices in conversation, even argument, and also the low, vibrant rhythm of preternatural thoughts.

But who am I to rule others? I was anointed the Brat Prince by Marius before I ever set foot on that rock music stage decades ago, and a brat I most surely was. Marius had come up with that little label for me when he realized I was revealing to the Vampire World all the secrets he’d bound me under penalty of destruction to keep. And a legion of others have picked up the title, and they use it as easily now as the simple appellation Prince.

It’s no secret to the elders far and wide that I’ve never bent the knee to any authority ever, that I smashed up the coven of the Children of Satan when I was taken prisoner by it in the 1700s, and that I broke even the most informal rules with my rock music adventure, and deserved a good deal of the condemnation for recklessness that I received.

I didn’t bow to Memnoch either.

And I didn’t bow to God Incarnate, who appeared to me in the airy spiritual realm into which Memnoch dragged me, all the way back to the narrow dusty road to Calvary in the city of ancient Jerusalem. And having given short shrift to every being who had ever tried to control me, I seemed a most unlikely person to undertake the monarchy of the Undead.

But as this story begins, I had accepted it. I had accepted it truly and completely and for one simple reason. I wanted us—we, the vampires of this world—to survive. And I didn’t want us clinging to the margins of life, a miserable remnant of bloodsucking vagabonds, battling each other in the wee hours of the night for crowded urban territories, burning out the shelters and refuges of this or that enemy, seeking to destroy one another for the most petty of human or vampiric concerns.

And that is what we had become before I accepted the throne. That is exactly what we were—a parentless tribe, as Benji Mahmoud put it, the little vampire genius who called to the elders of all ages to come forth and take care of their descendants, to bring to us order, and law, and principles for the good of all.

The good of all.

It is extremely difficult to do what is good for all when you believe that “all” are evil, loathsome by their very nature, with no right to breathe the same air as human beings. It is almost impossible to conceive of the welfare of “all” if one is so consumed with guilt and confusion that life seems little more than an agony except for those overwhelmingly ecstatic moments when one is drinking blood. And that is what most vampires believe.

Of course I’d never bought into the idea that we were evil or loathsome. I’d never accepted that we were bad. Yes, I drank blood and I took life, and I caused suffering. But I wrestled continuously with the obvious conditions of my existence, and the bloodlust of my nature, and my great will to survive. I knew full well the evil inherent in humans and I had a simple explanation for it. Evil comes quite simply from what we must do to survive. The entire history of evil in this world is related to what human beings do to one another in order to survive.

But believing that doesn’t mean living it every minute. Conscience is an unreliable entity, at times a stranger to us, then ruling the present moment in torment and pain.

And wrestling with uneasy conscience, I wrestled as well with my passion for life, my lust for pleasure, for music, and beauty, and comfort and sensuality, and the inexplicable joys of art—and the baffling majesty of loving another so much that all the world, it seemed, depended on that love.

No, I didn’t believe we were evil.

But I’d taken on the argot of self-loathing. I’d joked about traveling the Devil’s Road, and striking like the hand of God. I’d used our contempt for ourselves to ease my conscience when I destroyed other blood drinkers; I’d used it when I chose cruelty for convenience when other paths had been open to me. I’d demeaned and insulted those who didn’t know how to be happy. Yes, I was determined to be happy. And I fought furiously for ways to be happy.

And I had settled—without admitting it—for the old sacrosanct idea that we were inherently evil and had no place in the world, no right to exist.

After all, it was Marius himself, the ancient Roman, who had told me we were evil, and that the rational world had no place for evil, that evil could never be effectively integrated into a world which had come to believe in the true value of being good. And who was I to question the great Marius, or realize how lonely his existence was, and how dependent he was on keeping charge of the Core of vampiric life for those whom he so easily branded as evil?

Whatever my confusion on it, I played no role in a social revolution for blood drinkers. No. It was someone else who questioned the old assumptions about us with a childlike simplicity that changed our world.

Benji Mahmoud, Born to Darkness at the age of twelve, a Bedouin by birth, was the blood drinker who transformed us all.

Made by the powerful two-thousand-year-old Marius, Benji had no use for ideas of inherent guilt, mandatory self-hatred, and inevitable mental torment. Philosophy meant nothing to him. Survival was all. And he had another vision—that the blood drinkers of the world could be a strong and enduring tribe of immortals, hunters of the night who respected one another and demanded respect in return. And from that simple conviction in Benji’s audacious appeal, my monarchy was eventually born.

And it is only in an informal and carefree style that I can tell you how I eventually came to terms with being the monarch.

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Dena2U
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Meh
Reviewed in the United States on November 12, 2018
Anne Rice is my favorite author and as such I have read every one of her books penned in her name and in her alias. This was my most anticipated and least favorite. It''s been awhile since we spent time with Lestat and his cohorts. It was nice to be with them again but... See more
Anne Rice is my favorite author and as such I have read every one of her books penned in her name and in her alias. This was my most anticipated and least favorite. It''s been awhile since we spent time with Lestat and his cohorts. It was nice to be with them again but that''s all it was, nice. The first part of the book is back story and build up to the present situation. Then a quick crisis in which Lestat is victorious and the crisis is averted. The bad guys character isn''t fully drawn out, nor Benji''s need to depart this world. All vague. I guess that''s my issue with it, it was vague. I was never fully drawn in to the world as I always was in the past. When I finished reading I thought "Well I guess this is it and she was just tying up loose ends." It felt like an anticlimactic end to what was once the most fabulous tale ever told to me. I wish someone would have stopped her from publishing this one the way it is. Maybe someone finished it for her or she has simply lost the passion for it she once had. So I give it three stars because I spent time with old friends. If I was holding Anne rice up to Anne Rice standards I would rate it one star.
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Tim
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Weakest entry in the series.
Reviewed in the United States on October 10, 2018
Short. Not much happens. Lestat falls in love with everything, makes bad decisions, some slightly inconvenient conflicts happen that should have been resolved two novels ago. Everything is restored to status quo by the end of the novel minus a few inconvenient characters.... See more
Short. Not much happens. Lestat falls in love with everything, makes bad decisions, some slightly inconvenient conflicts happen that should have been resolved two novels ago. Everything is restored to status quo by the end of the novel minus a few inconvenient characters. Yet another of the six thousand year old first brood is introduced, who cannot help but fall in love with Lestat. Seriously, if there are only 3000 vampires left in the world how could so MANY of the first brood survive to the present?
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Bruce P. Grether
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
BLOOD COMMUNION: THE USES OF PREDATION
Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2018
BLOOD COMMUNION, Anne Rice’s new addition to her beloved series of Vampire Chronicle novels, includes some of the most powerful, lucid, and effective storytelling prose she has ever produced. I respect her suggestion that readers not read reviews of this book that contain... See more
BLOOD COMMUNION, Anne Rice’s new addition to her beloved series of Vampire Chronicle novels, includes some of the most powerful, lucid, and effective storytelling prose she has ever produced. I respect her suggestion that readers not read reviews of this book that contain spoilers. In the following I describe no specific plot line or what happens to characters. I’ll keep my discussion to the broad implications, which are indeed profound.

[NO SPOILERS FOLLOW.] This is a tightly-constructed, fast-moving, vividly alive and sometimes deeply disturbing narrative, exclusively told in first person by Lestat de Lioncourt. The narrator wrestles with what his role has truly become as the Prince of the Vampires on a global scale in today’s world—though not every single member of that tribe accepts his authority, which is a crucial point. As always, the fascinating realm into which Anne takes us, and the seductive voice of the narrator, which makes the tale irresistible, entertain lavishly with prose so vivid, while streamlined, that it seems already like a fabulous film or television series to the mind’s eye.

Also consistent in all of the Chronicles are the profound philosophical and spiritual underpinnings, though these elements never intrude on the pure entertainment value.

Consider this: predators are not evil in Nature itself, in fact they are necessary to the health and well-being of prey populations, in the broader sense, as they tend to cull weaker individuals that are young, injured or sick, and elderly. In Anne’s world here, where mortal humans like us and post-human vampires inhabit the same world that we, the readers do. The only actual evil apparently stems directly from human nature, and its post-human form is basically the same, with the ability to choose behaviors. This evil is ultimately no more than a determined appetite for revenge, vengeance, and a willingness to destroy lives, to destroy beautiful accomplishments, a lack of compassion, simple cruelty, and even a hateful will to cause suffering.

Anne’s vampires are not inherently evil because they are vampires—these creations of her limitlessly fertile imagination are far too complex and fascinating to enact “evil for evil’s sake,” as we sometimes see in lesser fantasies. The moral complexity at work in the Vampire Chronicles is every bit as frightening as the “real world” human evils we now face in everyday life. I’m also inspired to consider: if humans lack natural predators that seriously threaten us now, are our populations becoming mediocre? Are human evils such as endless wars, on a deeper level our species acting as our own predators?

Further, the possibility of redemption, of acceptance of a healthier balance between predatory instincts and the purposes of a prey population develops as never before in Anne’s new offering: BLOOD COMMUNION.

From the very beginning of these Chronicles, which remain unique in modern literature despite countless imitators, the theme of conscious predation—to kill by choice, not only from hunger, with the option to kill only the evil-doer, has been explored. These vampires can read minds, and have exquisitely intense sensitivity, so they know a bad apple: the rapist, serial killer, sadist and unregenerate destroyer of others.

Because these remarkably vibrant, complex, evolving characters truly seem to have a “life of their own,” I’m not sure if the author will agree with the following theory of mine. My feeling is that beginning in the first novel of the series, INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE, Lestat’s beloved Louis de Pointe du Lac not only helped him enter the modern world of the 19th century. Despite Lestat’s later disclaimer in THE VAMPIRE LESTAT, I feel he actually was becoming jaded and quite monstrous in his predation upon mortals before he met Louis. It seems to me that Louis’s initial distaste for taking human life actually re-awakened the human heart within Lestat, whose struggle with his conscience continues ever since through the series.

What Lestat at first viewed as Louis’s weakness, Lestat himself eventually embraced as a virtue. These two are powerfully bonded by love, and at the same time have most often found it difficult to co-exist. In these last few novels, they are accepting their interdependence.

Now with BLOODCOMMUNION, Lestat resumes full first-person control in his distinct voice with a story particularly concise, suspenseful, filled with intense action and dramatic changes. The primary theme is how Lestat deals with and comes to accept his position as Prince of his Tribe. He no longer houses the collective “core” of the Vampire Tribe, as The Queen of the Damned, Akasha, then Mekare, and he himself did, until the volume before this one: PRINCE LESTAT AND THE REALMS OF ATLANTIS. Yet now Lestat is still hailed by most of his kind, as their leader, due perhaps partly to his sheer charisma, as well as the fact of his original mortal family’s old noble, if not royal blood. The vampires are presently dwindled in numbers, due to numerous incinerations by Akasha and then Amel, and many recognize the need for a leader with understanding for recent fledglings in the Dark Gift, as well as the extremely ancient ones who continue to emerge.

There are a few who reject his authority, and from among them, the major challenge of this story arises. Also, all along Lestat has expressed a certain ambiguity and uncertainty about this role. Initially he stated that he refused to be called “The Prince of the Damned,” though doubtless some of the veneration pleases his vanity. At the same time, the matter of conscious predation returns as an important theme this time around. Yes, these vampires are driven to drink mortal blood, and even to kill, simply to survive, though the older they are and the more ancient the blood they have consumed, the less they need to survive on. In their nature, there is a kind of thirst for blood, not at all unlike the human lust for erotic pleasure—still, these are conscious beings, and they have the choice of what victims they feed upon or kill. This actually produces an ingenious dilemma also timely for mortals, in different ways.

This theme of predator and prey gains even more depth here, when Lestat—as he has for the last few novels—periodically fights his own urge to drink of “innocent blood.” Though his conscience urges him otherwise, some mysterious compulsion within him seeks this, as if the quality of the victim influences how the blood affects him in deeper ways. Does he seek to regain more of his own original innocence this way? We certainly know that to drink the blood of ancient vampires, who sometimes willingly share it, renders a younger vampire more powerful.

We’ve known for some time, since the last novel at least, that Prince Lestat intends to eventually rule as something like a constitutional monarch, rather than an absolute ruler. His gifted friend and mentor Marius, we are told, is working on drafting a constitution to govern the Children of Darkness. Most likely this will include such issues as principles that relate to vampires killing their own kind (a taboo that led to Claudia’s death in the first book, even though she only attempted it) and shedding the blood of innocent mortals, as well as confining or enslaving other varieties of non-mortal beings. Probably a sort of council or parliament will administer such principles.

None of these difficult issues are likely to be subject to simple and absolute “laws,” but given the brilliance of these immortals, the actual text would prove both eloquent and wise—at least within the parameters of the nature and needs of these Blood Drinkers. Perhaps something that lies ahead of these characters beyond the end of BLOOD COMMUNION, is this matter of governance: is democracy subject to abuses actually better than a benign monarchy? Clearly a wise and enlightened monarch is far better than a corrupt president. And yet how do you deal with a corrupt and tyrannical monarch?

Please don’t get the impression this is a philosophical novel, despite my discussion. I’m a philosopher by nature, but BLOOD COMMUNION is riveting entertainment, plus a fine work of literary art.

I suggest you sink your fangs into this marvelous book and savor its flavors!

— Bruce P. Grether
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Franziska G.
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Prince Lestat and the Death of the Byronic Hero
Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2018
Blood Communion is the 13th title in the Vampire Chronicles. This monumental series was published over the last 42 years and finds its climax in this, most recent book. A climax of such proportions that I, a passionate fan for the last 23 years, would be content if this was... See more
Blood Communion is the 13th title in the Vampire Chronicles. This monumental series was published over the last 42 years and finds its climax in this, most recent book. A climax of such proportions that I, a passionate fan for the last 23 years, would be content if this was the last installment, even though there are many stories left to tell.

This review is spoiler free by the way, so please don''t worry.
The book is narrated entirely by Lestat which to me was a welcome relief from the many, many voices that have shared the pages with him in the previous novels. I do love his view of things even if a first-person narrator can never tell a story entirely truthfully. And so, for the sake of listening to Prince Lestat’s voice, we have to live with hearing only his side of the tale and while that is enough, it is not entirely satisfying. But then again, how can you not love his voice and the careless determination with which he gives away the end of the story on the very first page?
“This is the story of how I accepted…”

We meet Lestat in his family’s chateau in the mountains of the Auvergne in France. The castle is mostly restored and houses a massive court. It is the attempt to form a center for vampire customs and life even though it seems to be impossible to integrate so many millenia and backgrounds into one common culture. Yet, when reading about this court, another comes to mind. The great Versailles. Doesn’t it make you smile that the Sunking of old has been replaced by a Prince of the Night?

Yes, there is character development. At least in some vampires. And yet others, like the eternal boy Armand remain stagnant. To a point that he doesn’t even realize the irony when he, a former cult leader who gave himself up to the sun in a fit of religious fever, accuses others and is entirely unforgiving: “I don’t care what the spirit moved either of you to believe.” That moment made me smile because in the midst of all the change, some things remain, for better or for worse.

We’ve always known Lestat as the Byronic Hero, by definition "a man proud, moody, cynical, with defiance on his brow, and misery in his heart, a scorner of his kind, implacable in revenge, yet capable of deep and strong affection" (Christiansen, Rupert, Romantic Affinities: Portraits From an Age, 1780–1830, 1989, Cardina, 221) . A character described by Lord Byron himself in the following words:
He knew himself a villain—but he deem''d
The rest no better than the thing he seem''d;
And scorn''d the best as hypocrites who hid
Those deeds the bolder spirit plainly did.
He knew himself detested, but he knew
The hearts that loath''d him, crouch''d and dreaded too.
Lone, wild, and strange, he stood alike exempt
From all affection and from all contempt
(The Corsair, 1814)

Countless many of you, dear readers and fans, have identified with the Bratprince because he struck that melancholic and yet defiant cord in you. I have, too. All my teenage years and further into my late 20s. Romantics and Goths, Outcasts, the Others, the ones not quite fitting in, those a little queer – we have always loved Lestat because we knew, he loved us back not despite but because of the way the world frowned at us.
But now, after almost three hundred years alive and 42 years on the pages of the Vampire Chronicles Lestat has matured – oh, the horror – to a point that I struggle to still describe him as the Byronic Hero of old. And I am strangely okay with that. We might all be strangely okay with that. Is that because we matured out of the rebellion, the otherness, the queerness, the defiance of the outcast, or is there much more to it?
Is the Byronic Hero capable of understanding that he is only an outcast because he choses to accept the labels given to him by a society that defines normal and acceptable? Is he able to free himself from what he has to recognize as a self-imposed exile? More importantly, what does that liberation look like?

Anne Rice explores those questions in this book. Questions that are not only of importance in a fictional, vampiric world, but also very much to the outcasts of today. Yes, the Goths, but also the Queers, the women, the People of Color, everyone not quite fitting into a white, patriarchal, cis- and heteronormative world. I don’t know how it is with you, dear Reader, but I have yet to meet an admirer of the Vampire Chronicles who does fit into that world. All of us, we are at least a little different, a little queer, a little outcast. So, this book and the journey of Lestat and the vampires to form one tribe under one rule, is our journey as well. The term intersectionality comes to mind and how much our society still struggles with it.

Blood Communion… It doesn’t get more Christian, does it? It is beautiful and extremely satisfying to see the Blood Religion (blood sacrified to vampire “gods”) of old, evolving into the selfless sacrifice of one of those “gods” themselves to save the ones dear to them. What an analogy to the bloodthirst of the Old Testament God and the selflessness of New Testament Jesus. Maybe it was that sacrifice that made God entirely human in Jesus Christ… and maybe it is that sacrifice that could give the vampires their humanity back. “There is no greater love than to lay down one''s life for one''s friends.” (John 15:13).

A Blood Communion is also a Blood Community. The same community that Lestat tries to establish in his castle. But does that mean that the outcast is no more? That the defiance and the pride that came with it, the otherness, the queerness have been overcome to form a community of likeminded creatures? Has Anne Rice slain her Byromic Hero for the sake of conformity?
The outcast (and isn’t the vampire the perfect image?) is defined by the ones casting them out. If the outcast decides not to be defined by what is considered normal and acceptable, they can find their tribe. And how can a whole tribe of outcasts possibly still be defined as being outcast at all?

I am woman married to another woman. I read my dear wife a quote from this book and she, a seasoned and gender-nonconforming warrior in the fight for LGBTQ rights, she cried.
“It was a different kind of life, our life, defined by how we wanted to dress, to dance, to speak, to be together. And mortal life had nothing to do with it.”
And cis/heteronormative life had nothing to do with it.
She wants to have this quote framed and hung on our wall.
In this cis/heteronormative world we live in, just like in the vampiric one, nothing is more important than creating communion and community. The outcast, vampiric or human realizes that all it takes to finally belong to a tribe, is to stop trying so hard to belong to the ones who made them an outcast in the first place. That’s how community and communion are created without giving anything up. When the outcasts stop trying to fit it, they turn to their own tribe, their home and the very thing that made them an outcast in the first place becomes the new standard, a common truth. Labels, the book says, do matter. But only those you choose for yourself.

That’s what I took from this book. Just that. To me, that matters. To me, it is important. Because it is that, what makes me strangely okay with Lestat not being the Byronic Hero anymore. There is no need for any of it when he belongs, in all his otherness, to a community that has enough pride to celebrate that otherness without trying to justify it, without trying to mimic a world that will never fully embrace them.

Dear Readers, dear Fans, dear fellow Queers and “Outcasts”, this book makes you desire nothing more than find, reunite, strengthen the bonds with your own tribe. I guess Lestat would say: "The labels others give you do not matter. Nobody defines you but yourself."
I am a bisexual Christian and female immigrant. I really needed to hear that.

For too long now reviewers and journalists have called Anne Rice the “Queen of the Damned”. Her vampires are not damned anymore. Let’s give her a new title: Queen of the Outcasts, of the Others, of the Romantics and Goths. She’s written again and again that she identifies with Lestat anyway and that she writes from the perspective of a gay man. So, all hail, the Queen of the Queers!
30 people found this helpful
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CEBEAN
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Never again
Reviewed in the United States on December 16, 2018
I told myself I would not waste any more money on Anne Rice books, yet I fell for his one. And I was right - it was terrible. Early Anne was one of our very best "horror" writers. EARLY Anne - Interview, Mayfair Witches saga - but most since has been utter crap. I won''t... See more
I told myself I would not waste any more money on Anne Rice books, yet I fell for his one. And I was right - it was terrible. Early Anne was one of our very best "horror" writers. EARLY Anne - Interview, Mayfair Witches saga - but most since has been utter crap. I won''t make the same mistake again.
21 people found this helpful
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Kindle Customer
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Lots of filler
Reviewed in the United States on October 22, 2018
Maybe I expected too much, but this seemed to have very little actual plot and a lot of filler telling me who was standing where and in what clothing while Lestat felt bad about himself. I love most of the Chronicles, but I struggled to get through this one.
18 people found this helpful
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Kindle Customer
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Time for an ending
Reviewed in the United States on October 11, 2018
I guess I have arrived at the end. A story must have an ending. I''m getting bored with this story and boredom is s sure sign it''s time for a change. This book told me that Ann needs to start another tale. The Lestat stuff is done.
17 people found this helpful
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the prophet
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Mediocre novel
Reviewed in the United States on November 16, 2018
After reading this brief novel,I can only conclude that perhaps the author needed money to buy a new boat, or a condo, and did not want to put her usual effort in writing an exciting novel as she usually does. I was very disappointed.
15 people found this helpful
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Anonymous
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A Tale
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 7, 2018
I enjoyed the book and managed to read it all in one day. I felt it was very much a "tale," not necessarily as full and detailed as any of the previous novels in the series, and possibly more interesting for long-term fans, or those who have read ''Prince Lestat'' and ''Realms...See more
I enjoyed the book and managed to read it all in one day. I felt it was very much a "tale," not necessarily as full and detailed as any of the previous novels in the series, and possibly more interesting for long-term fans, or those who have read ''Prince Lestat'' and ''Realms of Atlantis'' already. I wouldn''t start with this one if you''re new to the series, but it''s a good add-on. Good to know what the Brat Prince and his courtiers are up to, and interesting to see more insights into their system of government, and how they hope to bring the vampire ''tribe'' together in the modern age, with an abundance of wealth, compassion, justice, and a leader who finds mesmeric beauty in all walks of life. I always respect and appreciate Anne Rice''s work, as she experiments with ideas, perhaps beginning with a line or an event, without knowing exactly how it''s going to pan out. It is a joy to read this discovery, as much as I imagine it would have been to write it. That said, there were a few things that niggled me. Firstly, the character of Rhoshamandes: he is quite a perplexing mystery, and I can''t seem to get a grasp on his motives. If he has a split personality, I''m surprised that wasn''t made more of a feature. I''m really not sure what to make of him; there seem so many loose ends and conflicting theories. But, such is life on occasion, and I''m sure the afterlife is no different, in having its share of frustrating enigmas? Secondly, if vampire science is now so highly evolved, why aren''t certain ''deaths'' able to be verified? Thirdly, what has happened to poor Pandora? She is barely a shadow of her former self (it''s kind of depressing). There are so many new characters now - which is lovely - but means one is left craving for more than an outline of each of them, and likewise, it''s hard to hear the more familiar characters ''thinking,'' which was what I loved so much about past Chronicles. But. Perhaps this is yet to come. I did, however, enjoy the focus on Armand, and Gregory. The writing style has changed a lot, generally becoming less descriptive and more chatty, which may or may not work for you. I''ve read all of the main books (excluding the ones with the Mayfair witches, and Vittorio) and was impressed by the predecessor to this one; ''Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis,'' and this one is ok. Things happen and there is dancing throughout. There are some dark moments, but it is not a tale of woe. In one respect, one wonders whether reading about characters pushing through a life of struggle, and trying to maintain a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel, may feel more rewarding, and like it has more substance, but, I think it''s equally bold to write about characters who, on the surface, have all the wealth and popularity they desire, and where do they go next? What about when the old dark starts to creep in? What are the responsibilities of someone who doesn''t need to fight to survive? Such are the challenges of the new Lestat. The book gives a flicker of a promising new direction if you look out for it. It also contains philosophies one could read more deeply into, but on the whole they are referenced so delicately, the story is a very easy read, with some lovely visuals to finish it off. I''ve only given it 3 stars, as it was a bit predictable, and not my favourite of the series, but I''m glad to have been brought into the vampire world once again.
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I love amazon
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Another great book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 1, 2020
Waited eagerly for this book and wasn''t disappointed. Yes it was quite short and just hope Anne Rice continues on with more. Like most fans I have come to be very invested in all the characters and want more of their adventures. I''ve had to start reading the whole series...See more
Waited eagerly for this book and wasn''t disappointed. Yes it was quite short and just hope Anne Rice continues on with more. Like most fans I have come to be very invested in all the characters and want more of their adventures. I''ve had to start reading the whole series right from the beginning again !
2 people found this helpful
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LindaMM
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Coming of age!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 5, 2018
No spoilers .... How does Anne Rice grow Lestat and his beloved tribe from book to book so strongly? I adored her brat prince hero from her 2nd vc book and have cared more and more for him book after, sometimes obscure, book. I love him even more at the end of book 13. Anne...See more
No spoilers .... How does Anne Rice grow Lestat and his beloved tribe from book to book so strongly? I adored her brat prince hero from her 2nd vc book and have cared more and more for him book after, sometimes obscure, book. I love him even more at the end of book 13. Anne brings us anguish and triumph and love in common. Thank you beloved author!
2 people found this helpful
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M
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
I enjoyed this book within the vampire chronicles.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 20, 2019
I am a big fan of Anne Rice''s vampire chronicles. I was excited to read the latest instalment in the series. I very much enjoyed reading this novel. I love Anne''s writing style and the characters in her books. Especially Lestat!
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Claire Holland
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
I couldn''t put it down!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 10, 2018
Five stars because I love Lestat but much too short I thought. My heart broke and I''m still weeping as there''s no more to read. Fans will love it
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