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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Interview with the Vampire (The Vampire Chronicles, book 1) » User review

Interview With A Vampire

Anne Rice's vampire novel published in 1976 and the first novel of "The Vampire Chronicles".

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If you are looking for a great piece of Vampire Literature, this is the book for you!

  • Jun 28, 2010
Rating:
+5

There are hundreds of vampire novels popping up in every bookstore today, trying to jump on the undead popularity bandwagon that was sparked up again by Stephenie Meyer’s  Twilight Saga.  But how to know which of these works of modern literature are even worth your time?  If you are interested in a more classic view of vampires, I would recommend Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire, the first book in her The Vampire Chronicles series.  Be warned though, these aren’t sparkly Meyerpires. 

Interview with the Vampire starts off when a young reporter follows a unique looking candidate for a life’s story. Little does the young man know, he is getting ready to record the extraordinary story of 200 year old Louis, a stunning vampire who has him mesmerized from the start.

                Louis was a young plantation owner in New Orleans in the late 1700s.   He is struggling to deal with the loss of his unstable younger brother, and becoming increasingly unable to cope with his life.  He starts to wish for death, and begins living a reckless life of self-loathing.  On one of Louis’s nights of debauchery, he is approached by the enticing  vampire Lestat, who offers him the death he so craves.  Lestat turns Louis into a vampire so that he can have a companion.  Louis struggles with this new curse, at first refusing to feed off of the blood of humans. Rather than kill humans, he feeds off animals instead.  Eventually, Lestat’s habit if feeding off the slaves of Louis’s plantation, coupled with his and Louis’ peculiar behavior of disappearing during the day, leads to the suspicion of the slaves, and in a fit of fear and anger, Louis catches his plantation on fire, and helps Lestat to destroy the slaves to prevent word of their vampiric existence from spreading to others.  Though still guilty and repulsed by Lestat’s feeding habits, Louis begins feeding on humans and embracing more of his vampire nature.  Louis is constantly plagued by his still-human nature, his desire to find a purpose for his existence.  Lestat will not give him the answers he seeks, claiming to have no answers to give.  Louis starts toying with the idea of leaving Lestat and going in search of his own answers. 

One night, after storming out on a conversation with Lestat, Louis finds a sick little girl clinging to the lifeless plague-ridden body of her mother.  He feeds on her and then leaves her for dead.  Fearing that Louis is going to leave him, Lestat finds the little girl and turns her into a vampire, trying to create a family that Louis would not abandon.   Louis is shocked and hurt when he first see what Lestat has done to the young girl, Claudia, but  he cannot help but fall in love with the angelic, doll-like daughter that Lestat has given him.  He and Lestat teach Claudia everything they can, and the three vampires live together as a little family for around 60 years. 

Tension starts to build, however, when Claudia begins to realize that she cannot age.  Though trapped in the body of a very young girl, her mind has sharpened to that of a lethal woman.  She begins to grow angry and resentful, constantly asking Louis and Lestat who it had been that had made her into what she was so young.  Louis, feeling guilty and hurt, tells Claudia the entire story, and she forgives him, though her hate and resentment for Lestat grows when he refuses to give her the information she so desperately desires.  In a plot to get herself and Louis away from Lestat, who is appearing more and more insane and controlling, she poisons him and slashes his throat and body to shreds.  She and Louis then dump Lestat’s body into a swamp, where they are hoping the sun or the wildlife will finish him.

As they are making arrangements to depart to Europe to look for others of their kind, Louis and Claudia are confronted by Lestat, who is a ruined form of the splendor he once was. After attempting to destroy him with fire, they flee onto a ship bound for Europe.   They find creatures in Northern Europe who might have originally been their kind, but have grown mindless and vile.  It isn’t until they get to Paris that they finally find those who are like them.  They stumble upon a vampire named Armand’s coven, who are a troupe of actors in the Theatre des Vampires.  Here, they find that Lestat has been know, and rumor of his death by their hands is suspected.  

Interview with the Vampire culminates in a series of startling realizations and tragedies. I will not reveal the end here, because if you haven’t read the book, you deserve the chance to experience it without having the ending laid out for you.  The imagery that Anne Rice is able to bring alive is magnificent, and at times quite scary and disturbing.  She can make you feel like you are in the balmy air of New Orleans, or walking down a dank, dark street Parisian street, listening to the street musicians.  The emotions that Louis feels become your own.  I highly recommend this book!

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June 30, 2010
This is the epitome of vampire novels next to "Dracula." Rice's entire vampire series is very well-written, but this is the one that started it all. Another fantastic review!
 
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More Interview with the Vampire (Th... reviews
review by . July 16, 2010
I cannot give higher praise to Interview with the Vampire than to say that I wish I had never read this book so that I could have the pleasure of reading it for the first time once more. I try to return to this story every couple of years because it is one of the best pieces of horror fiction ever created. Dracula may be the vampire novel that set the precedent but Interview challenged the accepted rules and made the genre its own.       The book opens with the main character, …
review by . July 07, 2010
Just how I like my vampires
I have to say that I first saw the movie when I was nine and found out it was also a book later. This book was what got me hooked on Anne Rice. I don't see myself interested in anything Twilight because for me at least, this book tells what vampires should be. As I tell my friends I like my vampires dark, crispy in the sunlight, unsparkly, and fangy. This book spans many years in the lives of Louis and his maker Lestat.  What makes it so interesting is you get …
Quick Tip by . November 11, 2010
First in the best series ever written that looks at the vampire from the inside.
Quick Tip by . October 12, 2010
hands down my favorite vampire book of all eternity! this was the book that brought me into my love of the undead....Anne Rice is the queen of my realm!
Quick Tip by . July 24, 2010
this is exactly how i like my vampires. fanged, daylight fearing, coffin sleeping, and full of life...as far as the undead go
Quick Tip by . July 15, 2010
No vampire novel could ever beat this perfect romance. You can give the Twilight to a Britney Spears fan, but Interview with the Vampire is dedicated to a seletive people. You choose between the pop and the best.
Quick Tip by . July 13, 2010
Skip the movie, read the book. Lestat is larger than life (or death?). Twilight vampires could learn something from the way he struggles with moral questions and appreciates centuries of art and history.
Quick Tip by . July 13, 2010
One of the greatest vampire novels of all time. Anne Rice is phenomenal.
Quick Tip by . July 05, 2010
First of Rice's vampire books I read. great vacation book.
Quick Tip by . July 01, 2010
The original and still the best of the vampire books today!
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Wiki


In the now-classic novelInterview with the Vampire, Anne Rice refreshed the archetypal vampire myth for a late-20th-century audience. The story is ostensibly a simple one: having suffered a tremendous personal loss, an 18th-century Louisiana plantation owner named Louis Pointe du Lac descends into an alcoholic stupor. At his emotional nadir, he is confronted by Lestat, a charismatic and powerful vampire who chooses Louis to be his fledgling. The two prey on innocents, give their "dark gift" to a young girl, and seek out others of their kind (notably the ancient vampire Armand) in Paris. But a summary of this story bypasses the central attractions of the novel. First and foremost, the method Rice chose to tell her tale--with Louis' first-person confession to a skeptical boy--transformed the vampire from a hideous predator into a highly sympathetic, seductive, and all-too-human figure. Second, by entering the experience of an immortal character, one raised with a deep Catholic faith, Rice was able to explore profound philosophical concerns--the nature of evil, the reality of death, and the limits of human perception--in ways not possible from the perspective of a more finite narrator.

While Rice has continued to investigate history, faith, and philosophy in subsequent Vampire novels (including The Vampire Lestat, The Queen of the Damned, The Tale of the Body Thief, Memnoch the Devil, and The Vampire Armand), Interview remains a treasured masterpiece. It is that ...

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Details

Author: Anne Rice
Genre: Gothic Horror, Paranormal Romance, Vampires
Publisher: Ballantine Books, Alfred A. Knopf
Date Published: April 12, 1976

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