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I'm sure I'm not the only reader feeling stifled and spiritually depressed by the slew of modern "teenage" vampire fiction, which manages to reduce the intricate mythology of vampire fiction into cheap romances. If you feel the same, then you will probably want to thank the heavens for Anne Rice and her Vampire Chronicles. This, Volume 3 of the series, is perhaps the standout in a largely exceptional ouvre. Full of poignant and colourful characters, and weaving such complex and believable histories to explain the creation of the vampire race and the ties they have to their Queen, Akasha, this novel is truly a masterpiece. And Lestat may be the most bewitching vampiric character ever to grace paper. If you want to rediscover vampire fiction in all its glory, then this is a good place to start.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
Where does The Queen of the Damned rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
The queen of the damned ranks quite high in the audiobooks I've listened to so far, though I can't put a number on it.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Though I do love the main character, Lestat, my favorite characters in the first three of the Chronicles are those with the most depth and curiosity. I love Armand and Daniel, I love Marius, Claudia and Louis as well.
Have you listened to any of Simon Vance’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
Yes I've listened to his narration of the "His Dark Materials" trilogy and it is excellent. My only contention is that he has not narrated the rest of the series. They should be reproduced, unabridged, with Simon Vance as the narrator.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
There were many, but mostly it was the stories of the vampire origins as well as the philosophical conversations about mortality. It was also all the loving, nearly erotic relationships between the male vampires. Marius and Lestat, Daniel and Armand.
Any additional comments?
The first three books of the Vampire Chronicles should be at the top of any list of great vampire stories. Though I do like Charlaine Harris' vampire series, no one can top Anne Rice in this genre. Her writing is full of beautiful verse and deep philosophy. They remind me of Dostoyevsky's Brothers Karamazov in some ways, though less boring.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
I was a big big Anne Rice fan when the books originally come out. Loved them then. Didn't love them nearly as much now. Why not? Because I'd forgotten how preachy the author is. Forgotten the long philosophical diatribes.
The narration is a bit flat. A better narrator might have made a difference. All in all, it was a curiously flat listen. I am not entirely sure why. Maybe a combination of factors. If I could have given this a 3-1/2 stars, I would have.
Sequentially, this comes after "Interview" and "Vampire Lestat." This is my favorite of that trilogy and has the most complex characters and plot. If you have been awaiting unabridged audio versions of these books, these are worth listening to, but not as good as I hoped. Maybe I've been spoiled by Kim Harrison.
It is still, I think, worth the time to give this and the other two a listen. This was one of the important "foundation" books for the urban vampire genre, even if they seem a bit stilted by current standards. Bear with the preaching. Although it is sometimes grating, Anne Rice does make some good points, whether or not you agree with her.
12 of 14 people found this review helpful