Arguably the best book of Anne Rice's series The Vampire Chronicles. It directly continues from The Vampire Lestat, and begins by telling of the rise to fame of Lestat's rock band. Lestat's music leads to the awakening of ancient vampires all over the world, including the queen Akasha and my favourite, Khayman. The newly arisen Akasha proceeds to wipe out most of the world's vampire population and hatch a plan to create a world-wide matriarchy. Intrigue, angst, and violence ensue. This book has an extremely large cast of characters, as it also introduces Mekare and Maharet, the ancient twin witches, Mael, Jesse, Aaron Lightner, Daniel, Pandora, and Azim. The Talamasca is also introduced in this novel.

The Queen of the Damned shows a considerable departure in writing style for Anne Rice. The book is wide in scope, pulling together threads from characters all over the world. It's comparable to The Stand in the epic scale it brings to popular fiction. Also, Rice avoids the trap she usually falls into of extensive flashbacks. The only major flashback in the novel is short and interesting, concerning the origins of the vampires.

Warner Bros. is currently developing an ill-conceived film based on the novel. Their exclusive filming rights for Rice's books were set to end in 2000, so in the fall of 1999 they threw together a horribly cliched script and began filming. Along with awful dialogue and big cuts, a silly romance has been added between Jesse and Lestat. Much of the filming, including the elaborate rock music show, was done in Australia. The stars include Stuart Townsend as Lestat and Aaliyah (horribly mis-cast as the 6000 year old Akasha). Anne Rice, who has had her own movie adaptions rejected by the studio, has no connection to the film and is not impressed by the project.