The Vampire Lestat
Written By Anne Rice
Published by Ballantine Books starting in November, 1997
Price: $4.99USD (Mass Market paperback) 560 pages
Price: $15.95USD (Trade Paper) 496 pages
ISBNs: 0-345-47688-3. 0-345-47770-7. 0-345-41964-2
Intended audience: General Adult
Series: The Vampire Chronicles, Book 2
The Vampire Lestat is a sequel to the highly acclaimed Interview with a Vampire. The narrator and main character of this book, Lestat, is a vampire and a hero. He is a creature of Anne Rice’s dark and rich imagination. The novel is enthralling and claims to be the autobiography of Lestat de Lioncourt. It is the tale of this vampire who was once an aristocrat, back in the heady days of pre-revolutionary France. This book takes place in the 1980s, with a rush of memories that are a rush through the centuries that he spent in search of others like him. He has always been seeking the answers to the mystery of his eternal and terrifying existence. This story of his is mesmerizing, passionate, complex, and thrilling.
Lestat was encouraged by the telling of the story in the first book in The Vampire Chronicles. He decided to narrate his own story with a focus on his boyhood transformation and the subsequent wanderings. Lestat has constantly tried to rationalize his newly acquired immortality. He spends a lot of his life trying to convince humans of his existence.
This isn’t one of the usual stake-in-the-heart vampire stories. Anne Rice has started a new vampire mythos with this series. She has mixed ancient Egyptian legends into her narrative while weaving a rich and unforgettable tale of dazzling scenes and vivid personalities.
Lestat left his estate to become an actor in Paris. A vampire named Magnus is attracted by Lestat’s beauty and kidnaps him. They exchange blood which is how Lestat became a vampire. Lestat then transformed his mother who was dying and his closest friend into vampires. The three new vampires feed on the blood of criminals in Paris and ravage the area until they are challenged by a coven of vampires that is led by Armand.
Later Lestat searches Europe for Marius after Armand, not knowing if Marius was alive or not, mentioned Those Who Must Be Kept to Lestat. On his travels around Europe, Lestat certainly heard tales of Marius. He eventually gives up but Marius finds him and takes him to his home. Marius then tells how back in the days centuries before Christ, he was transformed into a vampire by Druid priests and how he now guards the immortals Enkil and Akasha, from whom all vampires descend. Lestat falls in love with Akasha which angers Enkil. Lestat then flees to New Orleans.
Lestat becomes a rock-and-roll star after society’s tumult awakens him. He capitalizes upon pseudo-Satanism to assert the true Dark Powers. His record albums and videos pave the way for a concert which explodes into a vampire riot.
This book elaborates on the story told in Rice’s previous book, while lacking the narrative pace and dark eroticism found in it. The plot of The Vampire Lestat becomes repetitive with the successive tales by Lestat, Armand, and Marius. There is much dialogue and little action in this horror novel.
Thanks to ColdStrife for the reason Lestat searched for Marius.