I first read this series years ago when I was in high school, and became completely immersed in Ann Rice’s gothic tale. I’ve never made it past Pandora, and tried to start reading the series again so that I could finish in time for Rice’s last novel, Prince Lestat. I was unsuccessful. What can I say? There’s just so many great books out there! However, this year I plan to pick up Pandora, and continue onto the books I’ve longed to read, but never found time to get to. With so many books out there since the first time I picked up this series, I thought I would give you another installment in my Reading Your Way Chronologically series where I help people figure out the best way to read a convoluted, massive, or intertwining book series.
Here are the confessions of a vampire. Hypnotic, shocking, and chillingly erotic, this is a novel of mesmerizing beauty and astonishing force—a story of danger and flight, of love and loss, of suspense and resolution, and of the extraordinary power of the senses. It is a novel only Anne Rice could write.
Once an aristocrat in the heady days of pre-revolutionary France, now Lestat is a rockstar in the demonic, shimmering 1980s. He rushes through the centuries in search of others like him, seeking answers to the mystery of his terrifying exsitence. His story, the second volume in Anne Rice’s best-selling Vampire Chronicles, is mesmerizing, passionate, and thrilling.
As the stories of the “first brood” of blood drinkers are revealed, we are swept across the ages, from Egypt to South America to the Himalayas to all the shrouded corners of the globe where vampires have left their mark. Vampires are created–mortals succumbing to the sensation of “being enptied, of being devoured, of being nothing.” Vampires are destroyed. Dark rituals are performed–the rituals of ancient creatures prowling the modern world. And, finally, we are brought to a moment in the twentieth century when, in an astonishing climax, the fate of the living dead–and perhaps of the living, all the living–will be decided.
For centuries, Lestat—vampire-hero, enchanter, seducer of mortals—has been a courted prince in the dark and flourishing universe of the living dead. Now he is alone. And in his overwhelming need to destroy his doubts and his loneliness, Lestat embarks on the most dangerous enterprise he has undertaken in all the years of his haunted existence.
Memnoch the Devil (1995) is the fifth novel in Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles series, following The Tale of the Body Thief. Some of the themes of this novel and in large part the title are re-borrowed from the old Irish gothic novel Melmoth the Wanderer. In this story, Lestat is approached by the Devil and offered a job at his side.
Armand until now has played a small role in the Vampire Chronicles. Here he assumes center stage, relating his five hundred years of life to fledgling vampire David Talbot, who plays amanuensis to Armand as he did to Lestat … It’s not just the epic plot but Rice’s voluptuary worldview that’s the main attraction … Elegant narrative has always been her hallmark … Rice is equally effective in showing how Armand eventually loses his religion and becomes “the vagabond angel child of Satan,” living under Paris cemeteries and foundling the Grand Guignol-ish Theatre des Vampires. In the twentieth century, a rehabilitated Armand regains faith but falls in love with two children who save his life. By the conclusion of Armand, the pupil has become the mentor.
New Tales of the Vampires
InPandora, fledgling vampire David Talbot chronicles the history of Pandora, a two-thousand-year-old vampire, and in fifteenth-century Renaissance Florence, Vittorio finds his world shattered when his entire family is destroyed in an act of unholy violence and embarks on a desperate quest for revenge, in Vittorio, the Vampire, in an omnibus edition.
Educated in the Florence of Cosimo de’ Medici, trained in knighthood at his father’s mountaintop castle, Vittorio inhabits a world of courtly splendor and country pleasures – a world suddenly threatened when his entire family is confronted by an unholy power.
*Don’t need to read Pandora & Vittorio, the Vampire to enjoy this series, but might want to for more history of the vampire universe.
Lives of the Mayfair Witches Crossover
7.) Merrick (Mayfair Witches #4)
In this mesmerizing new novel, Anne Rice demonstrates once again her gift for spellbinding storytelling and the creation of myth and magic, as she weaves together two of her most compelling worlds? those of the Vampire Chronicles and the Mayfair witches.
8.) Blood And Gold (Mayfair Witches #5)
Here is the gorgeous and sinister story of Marius, patrician by birth, scholar by choice, one of the oldest vampires of them all, which sweeps from his genesis in ancient Rome, in the time of the Emperor Augustus, to his meeting in the present day with a creature of snow and ice. Thorne is a Northern vampire in search of Maharet, his ‘maker’, the ancient Egyptian vampire queen who holds him and others in thrall with chains made of her red hair, ‘bound with steel and with her blood and gold’. When the Visigoths sack his city, Marius is there; with the resurgence of the glory that was Rome, he is there, still searching for his lost love Pandora, but bewitched in turn by Botticelli, the Renaissance beauty Bianca, with her sordid secrets, and the boy he calls Amadeo (otherwise known as the Vampire Armand). Criss-crossing through the stories of other vampires from Rice’s glorious Pantheon of the undead, haunted by Pandora and by his alter ego Mael, tracked by the Talamasca, the tale of Marius, the self-styled guardian of ‘those who must be kept’ is the most wondrous and mind-blowing of them all.
9.) Blackwood Farm (Mayfair Witches #6)
Lestat is back, saviour and demon, presiding over a gothic story of family greed and hatred through generations, a terrifying drama of blood lust and betrayal, possession and matricide. Blackwood Farm with its grand Southern mansion, set among dark cypress swamps in Louisiana, harbours terrible blood-stained secrets and family ghosts. Heir to them all is Quinn Blackwood, young, rash and beautiful, himself a ‘bloodhunter’ whom Lestat takes under his wing. But Quinn is in thrall not only to the past and his own appetites but, even more dangerously, to a companion spirit, a ‘goblin’ succubus who could destroy him and others. Only the unearthly power of Lestat combined with the earthly powers of the Mayfair clan could hope to save Quinn from himself and his ghosts, or to rescue the doomed girl Quinn loves from her own mortality. Shocking, savage and richly erotic, this novel with the deceptively gentle title bring us Anne Rice at her most powerfully disturbing. Here are vampires and witches, men and women, demons and a doppelganger, caught up in a maelstrom of death and destruction, blood and fire, cruelty and fate.
10.) Blood Canticle (Mayfair Witches #7)
Lestat is back with a vengeance and in thrall to Rowan Mayfair. Both demon and angel, he is drawn to kill but tempted by goodness as he moves among the pantheon of Anne Rice’s unforgettable characters. Julien Mayfair, his tormentor; Rowan, witch and neurosurgeon, who attracts spirits to herself, casts spells on others and finds herself dangerously drawn to Lestat; Patsy, country and western singer, who was killed by Quinn Blackwood and dumped in a swamp; Ash Templeton, a 5,000 year old Taltos whose genes live on in the Mayfairs. Now, Lestat fights to save Patsy’s ghost from the dark realms of the Earthbound, to uncover the mystery of the Taltos and to decide the fate of Rowan Mayfair. Both of Anne Rice’s irresistible realms – the worlds of Blackwood Farm and the Mayfair Witches – collide as Lestat struggles between his lust for blood and the quest for life, between gratification and redemption.
*Readers should probably read first three books in The Lives of the Mayfair Witches series before picking up Merrick.
11.) Prince Lestat
The vampire world is in crisis – their kind have been proliferating out of control and, thanks to technologies undreamed of in previous centuries, they can communicate as never before. Roused from their earth-bound slumber, ancient ones are in thrall to the Voice: which commands that they burn fledgling vampires in cities from Paris to Mumbai, Hong Kong to Kyoto and San Francisco. Immolation, huge massacres, have commenced all over the world.
Who – or what – is the Voice? What does it desire, and why?
There is only one vampire, only one blood drinker, truly known to the entire world of the Undead. Will the dazzling hero-wanderer, the dangerous rebel-outlaw Lestat heed the call to unite the Children of Darkness as they face this new twilight?
12.) Blood Paradise (To be released in 2016)