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Reviews of Queen of the Damned, the (1988)

Review by StefanY (2007-08-24)
When I started this book, I really had problems getting into it. I think that the problem for me was that it skipped around quite a bit between characters in the beginning and tried to introduce several new ones only to kill off some of them immediatly. In essence, I guess it took me out of my comfort zone and I wasn't too sure that I liked it.

But, perseverance paid off and after 150 pages or so, I found myself drawn deeply into this robust story. The book is well written, taking us between current events happening with our vampire friends and deeper into the vampire mythology than we have ever been. Most of this novel focuses on the creation of the vampire race and it certainly does not disappoint. Mrs. Rice has created a rich, lush background for her version of the vampire species and by linking them to current events happening to her characters, she makes the history itself come alive...literally!

Review by mrdude (2005-10-22)
The Queen of the Damned, The third book in the Vampire Chronicles, by Anne Rice continues the story of the vampire lestat.

In the previous volume Lestat had re-awakened and upon reading his offspring's tale of his life decides to write his own story in response along with a rock album. Now in the third book of the vampire chronicles; Lestat's music and book has not only gotten the attention of other vampires, but the eldest vampire in existence.

Some time ago, when I picked up the sequel to interview with the vampire I found myself relived that the story was to continue in ancient times, for I worried that I would not enjoy a tale of modern vampires. With this book I was forced to take the chance, much of the book does take place in the 20th century, but I was quite pleased to find that this did not detract from the story whatsoever. Never the less, explaining any of the plot line reminds me quickly that if it were not for Anne Rice's excellent storytelling, beautiful prose, and captivating characters, this story would have been far to outlandish for me to enjoy.

The novel is obviously meant to have been written by the vampire Lestat. There is a small introduction written in first person by Lestat which works to recap the events in the very end of the previous book. What follows are five parts, the first two leading up to Lestat's rock concert. The structure and the writing of this book shows rice's true talent as an author. Even given due warning by the narrator himself, the story leaves the strict first person narrative that the previous two volumes were written in and instead is written in the third person, Lestat remaining the narrator always, and jumps between various different characters. What struck me as such good writing was the enormity that these different characters encompassed. Each one is introduced so fully and so completely by Lestat that one still feels as though the characters themselves are telling the story. It is amazing to see such a character driven novel have such driving force and such a solid plot line. It seems that all events are given to the reader under the pretense of an aspect of the character.

Back to the time period that the story is told in. As I had mentioned before, the bulk of the plot line, at least in the beginning of the novel, remains in the 20th century; but due to the immense character development and other brilliant literary tools, Rice maintains that deep mythology and vast depth of her story. Much more is revealed about the history and nature of these wondrous creatures that rice has created.

My only regret is my own failure to even comprehend what could happen next. I worry that the next volume may have little to explain, other than a simple telling of one individuals trials through time. But I suppose such worries are not of any importance. I implore all that have read the previous two novels to continue with this volume if only to quench the need for more answers in the endless mythology Rice has created.

(review also posted at the IBDoF)

Review by Moondancer (2003-03-08)
By far my favorite Rice novel, Queen of the Damned is a lot of things. Unlike the first two, it is a book on a grand scale about apocalypse, vampire-style. It jumps around a lot, juggling disparate characters and points of view, a marked contrast to the prior two which effected a first-person style. It is plot-driven, rather than character-driven and perhaps because of this the character development suffers a bit. It is hard to amply develop a single character when the book is devoted to more than a half dozen who only interact with each other near the end. But these varied elements are all woven together beautifully for the climax.
This book is an excellent read for anyone who has read the first two, but it works just as well for someone who has never read a thing by Rice. For those who have read the others, many of the characters will be more three-dimensional and more fleshed out, but with the quantity of newer characters introduced in this installment the backdrop provided by the rest of the series becomes mostly unnecessary. This novel stands on its own well enough.




©Steven Jeffery / IBList.com, 2012
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