Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Interview with the Vampire / Anne Rice / 368 pages / November Challenge (horror)

This first novel of Rice's Vampire Chronicles presents the vampire Louis telling his story to the skeptical human reporter Daniel.  The tale winds its way through New Orleans and Europe, from Louis's vampire birth in 1791 until the early 20th century.  The book hints at many sexual themes, but none of the relationships are explicitly described.  Louis tells of attractions to two older male vampires, a human female, and even a 5-year-old turned vampire by his maker, Lestat.  The novel primarily chronicles events in Louis's vampiric life and his feelings about those events.  He begins as a young man (he is 25 when he is turned) grieving for his brother.  He is excited by the new perceptions he gains as a vampire and seeks out all the beauty of humanity, taking in music and art and literature.  As he finds it necessary to kill humans rather than animals, he becomes more and more disturbed by his vampiric nature and begins to believe he is forever damned.  The novel inspired the 1994 film, Interview with the Vampire, starring Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise.  It can be surmised that Stephenie Meyer has drawn on Vampire Chronicles for her Twilight series; many of the descriptions of vampires' skin and perceptions and the theme of guilt in some vampires over taking human life are similar.  The next book in the series is The Vampire Lestat.

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