The Vampire Chronicles spans 38 (Real Life) years now. I read borrowed copies of “Interview With The Vampire” and “The Vampire Lestat” (which ended in a cliff-hanger) then waited what seemed like an eternity for “Queen of the Damned.” I read that novel, and the ten subsequent novels and the related Mayfair Witches novels as they were released. After Blood Canticle, I did not expect to ever meet my old fictional fiend-friends again.
This is the 13th book in the Vampire Chronicles. It is written in mixed 1st Person, and 3rd Person Narration, with Lestat primarily written in First person. It flows together very nicely and I did not initially even notice the change in narration Point of View. I was impressed by this. Often changing of points of view in this fashion jolts me out of the story, and in “Prince Lestat” that only happened once, and only for a few paragraphs. This is not a flaw in the book. I learned something new to me about writing that I need to study further.
There is noticeable product placement in “Prince Lestat.” Good for Ms. Rice. It isn’t done in a heavy handed way, and in this case (as apposed to some best selling novels where the product placement often is so blatant it seems more important then story,) using product brands enhances the story. This is modern age “Patronage.” Marius would approve. Celebrity Endorsements are more difficult for writers then musicians. The one issued that Ms. Rice doesn’t face with use of brand names is dating the story. Dating the story actually an enhancement when writing about the angst of immortal creatures.
Simon Vance did an amazing job reading this book. He got to warm up reading the long awaited unabridged version of “Memnoch the Devil.” Bravo Mr. Vance! Lestat’s accent comes and goes, French to American, or a Fusion of both. This was well done and realistic. Marius’ accent must have been a challenge. I would have made his spoken voice more languid and detached, however that is just my personal take on the character. This is also not a flaw. I’m looking forward to hearing him read “Memnoch,” but I’ll wait a weeks or so before taking that journey again.
I enjoyed every single word of “Prince Lestat.” There were several passages that moved me very deeply. I suspect other readers fill also find bits of their own mortal life’s journey reflected in this novel. If one has read all the preceding books, I believe you will find this 13th a welcome reunion with old friends. To me it felt like, “Putting on my old leather jacket once again, as Winter cold approaches.”
I do not recommend starting with this novel. If you haven’t read the preceding novels, I suggest that you go back and read “Interview With The Vampire,” “The Vampire Lestat,” and “The Queen of the Damned” before (if you really have to) skipping ahead to “Prince Lestat.” The reader will get the most out of this 13th book by reading all of them in order, as well as “The Witching Hour,” “Lasher,” “Merrick,” “Blackwood Farm” and “Blood Canticle.” I thought until recently that “Blood Canticle” was the end of the story. It most certainly is NOT.
Having read "Unfinished Tales," I was familiar with this story already. Christopher Tolkien does a wonderful job with fleshing it out into a full novel. Christopher Lee reads it like only Christopher Lee can do. The only think I would have like better then having him read this story is if Christopher Tolkien had read it himself. I was very happy and now I'll actually have to buy the book while it is still in first edition. Go Christopher(s.)
It was very easy for me to slip back into Sullivan's world. This first prequel was great fun to listen to and the characters were old friends but still new to me. I was hesitant after the author's long introduction. I've read prequels that are just back-story published to extend a series and this is NOT the case here. It is, as promised, a complete novel, beginning to end, and not the beginning of another "Wheel of Time." (For those who are not familiar with the reference, that series was finished by Brandon Sanderson after Robert Jordan died. Jordan knew he was dying and set the stage, but the chances of another epic being finished that way are slim.) Other series go on and on like zombies, and this author wants to avoid both situations. Sullivan proposes to write a large number of prequels, all complete novels. I applaud that. I have abandoned series in the past, particularly if I have met the author and it is clear that there never will be an end to the story. I like these characters and look forward to hearing more of their adventures. I already know how the story ends, but now I'm beginning to know how it began. I am not going to email him with a request for more. This review and my purchase will have to serve.