From Anne Rice, conjurer of the beloved best sellers Interview with the Vampire and Prince Lestat, an ambitious and exhilarating new novel of utopian vision and power.
"In my dreams, I saw a city fall into the sea. I heard the cries of thousands. I saw flames that outshone the lamps of heaven. And all the world was shaken...." (Anne Rice, Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis)
At the novel's center: the vampire Lestat de Lioncourt, hero, leader, inspirer, irresistible force, irrepressible spirit, battling (and ultimately reconciling with) a strange otherworldly form that has somehow taken possession of Lestat's undead body and soul. This ancient and mysterious power and unearthly spirit of vampire lore has all the force, history, and insidious reach of the unknowable universe.
It is through this spirit, previously considered benign for thousands of vampire years and throughout the Vampire Chronicles, that we come to be told the hypnotic tale of a great sea power of ancient times, a mysterious heaven on earth situated on a boundless continent - and of how and why, and in what manner and with what far-reaching purpose, this force came to build and rule the great legendary empire of centuries ago that thrived in the Atlantic Ocean.
And as we learn of the mighty, far-reaching powers and perfections of this lost kingdom of Atalantaya, the lost realms of Atlantis, we come to understand its secrets and how and why the vampire Lestat, indeed all the vampires, must reckon so many millennia later with the terrifying force of this ageless, all-powerful Atalantaya spirit.
©2016 Anne Rice (P)2016 Random House Audio
This book needed a good editor to prune a lot of excess verbiage. There are about three hours (could be more, it was mind numbing) in the middle of the book devoted to highly detailed - and often repetitive - descriptions of Atalantaya. These descriptions did nothing to advance the story and next to nothing to flesh out the characters. After the fourth detailing of a particular feature, such as the building material, I wanted to write a letter to Rice's editor and suggest more stringent review.
The story itself blends the usual vampire lore with a generous dollop of straight up science fiction. Basically, there are extraterrestrial aliens among us, and they may - or may not - present a threat to the familiar vampires. Certainly they intended to threaten life on earth as we know it. The book's promo was more interesting than the story itself.
Lestat is a much tamer version of himself. Louis is more of a sycophant. Marius reverts to the Roman general he once was. Yawn.
Simon Vance adopts a number of accents for the various characters. With limited success. He appears to be trying a Southern drawl for Louis, but it's neither accurate nor consistent. Lestat's French accent is similarly thin. Not sure what's going on with Marius, or Seth. Or Farid; this character needs a distinctive voice, but didn't get it. This book doesn't seem as skillful a narration as some of the earlier books.
I considered not finishing the book. At 17 hours, 13 minutes, it's longer than most audiobooks. Even with the two hour edit suggested above, it's too long. Rice could have told the story in a more engaging manner had she trimmed the fat. Perhaps its time to end the saga; that could certainly be done given the ending of the book (no spoilers). Still, it's the Vampire Chronicles, so I forced myself to finish.
I'm thinking about returning it for my credit, that's a good summary of how I felt about this book. Sad, given how eager I was to read it.
Most of Anne's books have more action than this one. The writing style, in my opinion is more like her Mayfair books, but entirely in the vampire world. There were lots of discussions about concepts, new charicters, and the world of Atlantis. The full cast of characters are there, but not everyone has a speaking role. Overall I enjoyed it. Simon Vance did an excellent job! I have mixed opinions about him. He is sometimes mediocre, and puts me to sleep with his sing song cadence, or he does such fantastic job that he can make an awful book seem better than average.
Whether you are an Anne Rice fan or not, this riveting story painted in lush, eloquent prose brought to life in a magnificent performance by Simon Vance, delivers a deep examination of God, Soul, universal connectivity, equanimity, community, justice, love and even diplomacy. Although I've been an Anne Rice fan for nearly forty years, I did not realize The Vampire Chronicles embodied the internal and external components of a modern morality play until I heard them performed by Mr. Vance. Each of the twelve volumes grinds the characters through grief, physical and psychic pain no mere human could ever survive, thus the vampire, immortal metaphor. Prince Lestat gives us both male and female response to the tribulations and agony of life in 'the savage garden.' I've read and listened to the Vampire Chronicles many times and feel strongly that Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis is, without doubt, her best work yet.
If you are looking for blood and guts gratuitous violence, you won't find it here. Violence is the amazing artistic device she uses as pivotal events to change everything you've experienced up until that point. If you love beautiful writing, you will love this book.
this is a strange addition to Anne's work. if you love her, get it. The narrator is superb. I'd you just want the vampires from the 80s and 90 a you'll love hearing from all the Old Friends... just strange that she mixed in a book which for the most part is about the legend if Atlantis etc... with a vampire chronicles book... i don't know how i feel about it. in the end it was just ....meh
Much like everyone else, after trudging through Prince Lestat I was ready to give up on Anne Rice's work for good. Especially after seeing the title of this latest addition to the series. I mean, come on, "The Realms of Atlantis" sounds like Anne Rice is going to be adding Aquaman, Spongebob, and Little Mermaid into her unique world of vampires, ghosts, spirits, and witches. A free Audible credit and the curiosity of how much worse can this get won out my decision making process and a few minutes later, I was listening to Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis on my car ride back home from work. I'm happy to report, this was a great decision!
Realms of Atlantis picked up the pieces of Prince Lestat and put them back together into a cohesive story with a plot that moved along at an excellent pace while maintaining the mystery, splendor, and grandeur I've come to admire in Rice's work. Whoever edited this book must have realized how repetitive the language was in the previous installment because there was none of it in this one except for a few choice sentences of which make sense in context.
Realms of Atlantis answers questions fans of the series have long wondered about such as the origin of the vampires, Amel the spirit which has been at the very center of their existence, and even Memnoch the Devil is addressed in this book (Although, I'm disappointed with explanation of Memnoch). Atop of all this, we are introduced to a wholly new race of beings whose origins are incredibly interesting and explored in depth.
Rice introduces several more new characters into the series which seems like a bad idea due to the sizable amount of characters from series past. This time around the cast is just as large yet it doesn't seem to hamper the story. Each character we've come to know and love (Marius, Armand, Louis) gets a good amount of dialogue and interaction but don't slow the book down to brood on their every thought or idea. Despite these characters being worlds onto their own already explored in other books, it was a good move leaving them as supporting cast.
At the end of the book, we're left with more questions than answers which is okay. I'm looking forward to reading more about it in future installments. While some of the revelations might seem hokey on the surface, they are handled and addressed in such a way which make them feel as normal as the vampires do.
Overall, I'd recommend this book to those who are still feeling the disappointment of Prince Lestat and want to get the sour taste of it out of their mouths. It's incredibly different from whatever that book was and this feels more like the Anne Rice of past.
the storyline seemed forced and far fetched even for a vampire book. in a lot of ways it seemed like a revised version of tale of the body thief. not impressed with it at all.
yes I was
have a point to the story and quit writing the name Roshamandes. it was driving me nuts.
most of it was ok but towards the end he started to sound like some old movie vampire. maybe it was because I was so disappointed in the book.
Good narration but the story didn't add to Rice's vampire world. Even as her biggest fan, i was a bit disappointed that this went off on a tangent & ended up as sci-fi.
Maybe if they did something besides sit around and talk. A little action at all would be nice.
She is usually preachy. But she is really reaching to promote some sort of socialism/utopia and uses this story as a preaching platform almost completely.
It would be great if she would cut the philosophy down. And actually have some story and some action. She has these "godlike" powerful vampires that do nothing.
Writing in the old Anne Rice style, not our favorites acting out of character and doing stupid things just to service the plot in TV hack writer fashion
Less and less likely with each novel
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