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.
©1976 Anne Rice (P)2011 Random House Audio
“A magnificent, compulsively readable thriller . . . Rice begins where Bram Stoker and the Hollywood versions leave off and penetrates directly to the true fascination of the myth–the education of the vampire.” (Chicago Tribune)
“Unrelentingly erotic . . . sometimes beautiful, and always unforgettable.” (Washington Post)
“If you surrender and go with her . . . you have surrendered to enchantment, as in a voluptuous dream.” (Boston Globe)
I've been cursing (to my uninterested wife) Audible, for at least the last year for not having Anne Rice's quintessential books unabridged. Audible has definitively and irrevocably solved that problem today. Simon Vance is a brilliant orator who satisfies this burgeoning classic for audiobookephiles (yes I [may have] just coined a new English word) of the most discriminating variety. This is a beautiful title in many facets, purchase without hesitation.
I had only seen the movie. It was good, but listening to the book narrated by Simon Vance is great. Immediately bought Lestat.
This new recording of Anne Rice's classic book is welcome and thrilling. It's most important to know that these audiobooks (including "Vampire Lestat" and "Queen of the Damned") are not reissues of the unabridged CDs that were made years ago with Frank Muller doing the reading. I know that many listeners enjoy Mr. Muller's work, but I found his reading of The Vampire Chronicles to be far too mannered and "affected." I listened to the earlier CDs primarily because I'm a big fan of the Chronicles; but I always had a hard time getting past Mr. Muller's voice. I don't wish to be cruel about Mr. Muller - as I said, I know he has many fans, and has had a long and successful career as a voice actor - it's just that personally, I cannot appreciate the vocal mannerisms he uses and the type of performance he gives.
Now, thankfully, and at last, we have another award-winning Master Storyteller (Simon Vance) re-telling these tales! Within the first few minutes of listening, I knew that this would be the version that I could love and listen to over and over again. Mr. Vance easily evokes the "correct" atmosphere in his narrative, and moves between dialects as if he were a "Complete Cast" on his own. Sections that seemed awkward poetically in Mr. Muller's performance, now are rich, imaginative and evocative.
I am thrilled to recommend this to fans and first-timers alike. If you've heard the previous recording - even if you like it - you will love this new one. Fingers tightly crossed in the hope that Mr. Vance will also record "Tales of the Body Thief" and finally give us an unabridged recording of "Memnoch the Devil" (which has only ever been recorded in an abridged format).
Finally, I've heard Anne Rice say that she thinks that "The Witching Hour" (and probably "Lasher" and "Taltos") will be recorded in an unabridged format soon. Now THAT'S something to look forward to!! (Please, please, please....let it happen!)
The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice can only be fully enjoyed in the unabridged versions as the unfolding stories of the whole series are so complex and interconnected. Facts and incidents missing from any of the first books detract from the understanding and enjoyment of those following on.
Simon Vance is as always an excellent narrator and in" Interview with the Vampire", strikes just the right voices for the characters. Serious, sad Louis and wild irresponsible Lestat came to life perfectly as I had imagined. If audible brings us the "Mayfair Witches" in unabridged versions also that will be an added bonus.
Highly recommended to those already addicted and to listeners new to Anne Rice's work - these are the true vampires - don't expect tender romance or vegetarian vamps here!
Eclectic mixer of books of my youth and ones I always meant to read, but didn't.
As we approach the 'Teens there is, in my experience, an inordinate interest in the Vampire genre - Twilight, True Blood, Dark Shadows and even Hotel Transalvania are some examples. All of these (though I admit to having seen only the 1st Season of True Blood) pale into comparison with this excellent book. There are many things to like about it. Among my list are its level of detail,its lack of tasteless romance and pointless sensuality and its true Gothic insight. There is, of course, an element of romanticism and sensuality, but they are not at the forefront of the narrative. That narrative is dominated by Louis, Lestat, Armand and Claudia.
If you have read Dracula, or Frankenstein, or Golem and enjoyed them, then you will probably enjoy this too.
I waited a while to write the review. First I wanted to re-watch the film. I had remembered Lestat as a nicer character. He was in the Tom Cruise played role, but he is not in the book. I had remembered Christina as older (played by a very young Kirsten Dunst), but she is not in the book. This apart, the movie is a reasonably faithful adaptation and I enjoyed it again, as I did revisiting the book.
And then for the performance; Simon Vance gives a super performance, again. He reprises some of his Dracula style (from the audio I listened to earlier this year and I have reviewed elsewhere). For me he held the book together when it was beginning to drain me (no pun intended). I think the book is a tad too long (hence the 3 stars for Story). The accent at the beginning was a bit hard to appreciate, but by the end it was absolutely right. Armand was pitched beautifully, too. Perhaps Claudia was the least effective character, but I suspect that is the tone of the book rather than the voice interpretation.
Overall, I think the book a true standard bearer. I look forward to The Vampire Lestat in the not too distant future.
Who doesn't remember the first Vampire to be beloved for his tortured soul? His child vampire Claudia, the first ever child vampire in historical novels? Louis and his search for his lost soul gave us such a different look at the genre and this story was the reawakening of the love for "blood sucking vamps" that we had almost lost by the time Anne Rice wrote this. We were used to Christopher Lee and his brand of aloof and silent monster movies so when we fell in LOVE with Louis it was a whole new beginning for the genre of Vampires. Anne Rice became our Goddess of the Vampire stories, she introduced us to Louis and Claudia and Lestat and then went beyond to capture our hearts with more and more....this one is only the beginning. Expect to fall in love with the voice and the story all over again. Excellent narration too!
Having read the vampire trilogy by Anne Rice when they first came out, it was very nice to see them in an unabridged audiobook format.
The narrator brings this classic alive. At times it was so real, I caught myself crouching down, looking from side to side out of fear. Much better than the movie.
I went through a phase in my very early twenties that would now be called goth...but 26 years ago it was just called weird! In a span of about two weeks of unemployment I read about 8 vampire novels including The Hunger, Salem's Lot, Dracula, etc, one of the best reading periods of my life! The book that started it all was finding a used copy on an old bookstore shelf of Anne Rice's 'Interview with the Vampire'....I still remember reading late into the night until the sun came up and my initial and abiding love for the world and the characters....so....now we have this new interpredation of the novel and I was so excited to see it, but I have some problems with it....
While the novel holds up, I think the naration is not true to the story and actually ruins significant subliminal parts of it. This is, to my mind, a great 'American' horror novel - so, the British tone and feel by Simon Vance is off key. Also, this is a novel of eternal youth at the pinical of it's strength and beauty - the 25 year old Louis done by Vance makes Louis sound 45-55 years of age and that throws that sensation out the window. The accents are wrong, and as someone that loves Louisanna and New Orleans, I was very disappointed to lose that slow and beautiful accent of the French American Creole culture - it's part of the beauty and facination of the novel and it's not here. It is why so many tourists and fans of the novel still flock to NOLA to experience a wee taste of the sensations of reading Rice.
I am sorry for those who will only do the audio in this instance and miss all the things that make the emotions and imagination run wild when reading it in book form.
I am sorry for the person that only listened to 45 minutes and gave up - boy, did they miss a wonderful read!
I am sorry that the very talented but mis-cast Simon Vance did this naration.
I am not sorry that so many new readers will be absorbed into the wonderful and imaginative world of the Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles - welcome!
We had to wait till "The Girl Who...." was wrapped up in narration by Simon Vance, master reader... so perfect that now we get to hear the story we have relished, the story Anne Rice would not write again today, an now Vance unwraps the present of this gift already leaked out, no turning back and so perfect the writing and so perfect the voice to go with it! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
So well these words came from the ink, so well it falls from the tongue, so well it enters our ears and imagination again. Of coarse it is worth the buy. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Now, go read modern Jungian analysts on how they frame the story of all of this "Vampire" craze after Rice tipped the first big domino.... and see why it is we are so captivated by the subject of the reality of every day vampires throughout our culture and even in ourselves. So dark, let's get lost and find ourselves and illumine and see through this archetype about us.
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