Blood and Gold (The Vampire Chronicles #8)

ISBN: 0679454497
ISBN 13: 9780679454496
By: Anne Rice

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About this book

The Vampire Chronicles continue with Anne Rice’s spellbinding new novel, in which the great vampire Marius returns. The golden-haired Marius, true Child of the Millennia, once mentor to The Vampire Lestat, always and forever the conscientious foe of the Evil Doer, reveals in his own intense yet inti-mate voice the secrets of his two-thousand-year existence.Once a proud Senator in Imperial Rome, kidnapped and made a “blood god” by the Druids, Marius becomes the embittered protector of Akasha and Enkil, Queen and King of the vampires, in whom the core of the supernatural race resides.We follow him through his heartbreaking abandonment of the vampire Pandora. Through him we see the fall of pagan Rome to the Emperor Constantine and the horrific sack of the Eternal City itself at the hands of the Visigoths. Bravely, Marius seeks a new civilization in the midst of glittering Constantinople, only to meet with the blood drinker Eudoxia. We see him ultimately returning to his beloved Italy, where after the horrors of the Black Death, he is restored by the beauty of the Renaissance. We see him become a painter living dangerously yet happily among mortals, giving his heart to the great Botticelli, to the bewitching courtesan Bianca, and to the mysterious young apprentice Armand.Moving from Rome to Florence, Venice, and Dresden, and to the English castle of the secret scholarly order of the Talamasca, the novel reaches its dramatic finale in our own time, deep in the jungle where Marius, having told his life story, seeks some measure of justice from the oldest vampires in the world.

Reader's Thoughts


If you have read any of the Vampire Chronicles then you will largely know what to expect from this addition to the series. A Blood Drinker tells the story of their long life, including all the mortals they have loved, Blood Drinker’s they’ve encountered and vibrant cities they’ve travelled to. In this instance the reader is introduced to Thorne, a Viking vampire who has been reawakened by the knowledge that his Maker, Maharet (of Queen of the Damned), still exists. He’s been buried in snow for many centuries and Marius, another vampire previously introduced in the Chronicles, takes him under his wing, gives him a bath, a coffin for the night and takes him out hunting. All of which is just a set-up for Thorne to plead with Marius to tell him his life story. I have to say I do wonder why Anne Rice bothers with this sort of sandwiching of first person tales. The story of Thorne barely takes up fifteen per cent of the novel and it would be more than plausible for Marius simply to be compiling his memoirs – indeed he mentions throughout the narrative that he took to writing a diary anyway. It doesn’t take much persuasion for Marius to begin talking and when he does the reader hears of how he lived in Ancient Rome and Constantinople, then Venice and Dresden, with intermittent periods of going to ground in the shrine of Those Who Must Be Kept. The mother and father are a burden to his existence but one he is too fearful to relinquish or expose (though he seems incapable of keeping the secret anyway). He is also plagued by the regret that he left his love, Pandora, in a fit of anger following an argument and, as Maker’s and their offspring cannot hear each other thoughts, he cannot find her. There is also a reoccurring cult of Vampires who believe they are there to serve the devil by doing evil – and therefore serving Christianity – and any vampire that doesn’t join them is a heretic and should be destroyed. Luckily Marius is very untouchable, he has great powers from getting to drink from the Queen and being so old in the Blood – or so he thinks. All of this should make for a rich and interesting tale and, as always with Anne Rice, she paints a wonderful picture of time and place. However, I found it very hard to care what happened to Marius because he is simply not very likeable. He is pompous, patronizing, arrogant, short-sighted and – for all his scholarly ways – stupid. He declares his love for practically everyone and this diminishes the impact of his longing for Pandora. (view spoiler)[ A character we don’t actually meet until the end. I felt no sympathy when she refused to join him and then Bianca left him – they were well shot in my opinion (hide spoiler)]I also found two of the characters strangely inconsistent. Mael appears as an irrationally angry and resentful character, then he mellows, then he gets angry again and finally he is kind of calm. This could be accounted for by the huge amount of time that passes between his appearances but it still feels strange. Even more confusing is the strong-willed, determined character of Bianca who crumbles into a weeping, passive mess(view spoiler)[ when Marius turns her into a vampire (hide spoiler)]. This is not one of the best in the series and I have to say I always get the sense Rice just wants to be writing about Lestat, though there were a couple of poignant images that stuck with me. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>


Now, however, I am quite honest really quite for years a loyal fan of Anne Rice and her vampire chronicles, so slowly I would like to spend on her new books no more money. They are not simply worth it any more. High song of the book was very disappointing. If one knows only the vampire chronicles as well as me, it is not to be kept in this book often so quite simply with her witch things the overview. There so many ne names and characters.To the history can be only said: Boringly and a vampire’s chronicle not solemnly. It seems as if Anne Rice has tried with striving and need to have a book to kreeiren without really idea. This whole book reads so shallowly, this is not simply her style. No tension, nothing. Just a trivial history which one could find in every novel of a not known author. Nevertheless, so this is better!Pity a pity. I hope Mrs. Rice that a new book considers itself to put on the market if she has no really good idea for it.


The first Anne Rice book I read was The Mummy or Ramses the Damned. I was in the 8th grade. I loved it, and tried to read Interview with the Vampire but never finished it.Almost five years later, I was in Sestriere, Italy, a small mountain town outside of Torino, near the French and Swiss borders. I was there for almost a week, and it was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been in my entire life. I could spend hundreds of words describing it all, but I'm getting off track. It was the end of my European jaunt with Nana, and I had exhausted the last of my cache of books on the train from Milan to Torino. I raided Nana's, and the only applealing option was the newest Anne Rice paperback, Blood and Gold.I curled up in my bed with my new book, not exactly looking forward to it, but knowing it was better than nothing. But once I started, I couldn't stop, and finished it sometime around 4 am the next morning. I can't explain how I could suddenly be completely sucked in to this world, but when I got home, I raided my friend's collection of Vampire Chronicle books. I've read them all, except Interview. That confuses many people, but I just can't get into it. All four main characters - Louis, Lestat, Claudia and Daniel - appear in other books, I'm familiar with the plot points, and don't think it's necessary. I just really don't think it's a very good book. I much prefer the characters' appearances in the other books.I've loved many of the other selections in the series, but none quite as much as I love Blood and Gold. For me, it's the true last contribution to the Vampire Chronicles, even though two or three more books were published. (Those stories were Mayfair Witches crossovers, and I did not enjoy them very much.) It's Marius' story, and he and Armand are by far my favorite of the characters (followed closely by Lestat, who also plays a big role in Marius' story). Marius is very close to being the oldest vampire of the group, so his maturity and authority are to be expected. However, his immaturity and childishness are surprising elements, and those unforeseen qualities are some the reasons he is so interesting to read about. I've read it three times so far, and if I could give it another star, I would.


Ahora leí el que Rice considera su libro favorito pues narra la vida de Marius, quien para ella es su personaje más querido de Crónicas Vampíricas, según dice ella en su web. Como siempre, mi comentario está cegado por el amor que tengo por los libros de Anne, así que no hay mucha objetividad aquí. Marius es un personaje interesante. Mucho. Su historia a través de los siglos me pareció muy entretenida y, lo confieso sin vergüenza alguna, lo que más ansiaba era leer su vida con Amadeo (Armand) en la Venecia del Renacimiento. Leer su punto de vista, pues, porque los hechos ya los conocía pues son narrados por Armand en su libro "autobiográfico". Si al leer Armand dije que él era mi segundo personaje favorito de Crónicas Vampíricas, el tercero es Marius. El amor que narra tener por Armand... Amadeo en ese entonces, es tan intenso, que me emocionaba de sólo leer cuando Marius pensaba en Armand como aquel al que amaba demasiado y por sobre todos. Armand fue demasiado importante para él; el único discípulo suyo al que se tomó el tiempo de educar para lo que sería su vida vampírica. Marius es un personaje muy humano, aunque no es un romántico con deseos de suicidio como Louis. Marius está enamorado de los mortales, de su compañía, de sus logros y sus avances, sobre todo en el arte. Marius es un apasionado del arte y las cosas hermosas. Siente con mucha intensidad debido a tanto contacto con el mundo mortal, con la calidez de los corazones humanos, y demuestra esa forma tan intensa de sentir al hablar de aquellos de los que se enamoró, los inmortales Akasha, Pandora, Avicus, Zenobia, Armand, Bianca y Lestat, algunos de ellos hijos suyos y amantes en su momento; y el mortal Boticelli. Un libro que me gustó mucho; tiene sus detalles, pero los dejo pasar.


Of the books so far in the Vampire Chronicles this has been the dullest. I never would have imagined such a powerful and old vampire would live such a mundane existence. Excluding the part where he describes surviving the attack by the satanist this books reads like an autobiography of an everyday artist. He possesses skill in painting, sees the beauty in most everything, and fails to maintain happy relationships with those he cares for. That is essentially the book in a nutshell. For me this was a tedious read that I had to force myself through.


** spoiler alert ** All I can say that I really loved this book. I finally knew all story of Marius and Bianca. I knew so much of characters I knew just names. I remember scene with Zenobia that made me cry. It was so beautiful. And Bianca who saved Marius. And poor Armand. But mostly I paid attention on Marius and Pandora. They remind me of myself and girl I dated. She was real Pandora, and I was like Marius- begged her to stay with me, looked for her...butwe still broke up. I could understand and Bianca's jealousy. Bianca is really femnine and knows that no man can betray her. Well, Marius looks "good-evil". He can be very gently and loving, but also very evil and cruel. So I don't know I like him or not. But probably I do. I was very sad when he lost his all books and paintings. I can imagine his pain. In any case all book was very interesting, I enjoyed it very much. Now when I finished it, I have many thoughts in my head and I think "What I could do if I was one or other character?". I think now what I could understand and what I could judge. The end of book was quite...strange. I was a little bit shocked and didn't expect such ending. (Maybe because I forgot to ask my friends who read this book more details, I asked my all friends who read every book of VC to tell me every single detail before I start reading). And I'm very sad about Santino's death.... I think Marius had to forgive him, because Santino helped him after all to repay for Armand. But how I can judge Marius of this revenge Thorne did for him, when I, myself, cannot forgive my enemies? In summary I think this book is very good to understand such emotions like anger, revenge, love, hate, solitude... I would never forget this book. It is locked in my heart forever. I bow for all Anne Rice works, because none of her books still didn't disappoint me. I loved all of them.


** spoiler alert ** Okay, this one is MUCH better than the previous book. Flawed in some places, yes, but I think if I'd started reading this one ten years ago instead of "Merrick" then I might not have given up on the series so fast.Having the story told from Marius's point of view is a big reason for the improvement; in my opinion he's just a more interesting character than David. I enjoyed having him fill in the gaps of his centuries-long life, especially those huge segments between leaving Pandora and setting up his glorious life in Venice, and then between the loss of Armand and finding Pandora again.Speaking of Armand and Pandora (that relationship is one of the flaws, but I'll get to that in a second), Marius makes some infuriating mistakes in his life. I was utterly stunned to find out that Marius KNEW where Armand was after being kidnapped by the coven of Satanic vampires and left him there. I can understand being horrified that Armand had been turned so easily, but he had to have known that the coven tortured him to make this happen. After reading "The Vampire Armand" I thought it would be nice to have a reconciliation between those two, but not any more. How utterly heartless. And abandoning Pandora was another boneheaded move, one which he regrets almost as soon as he does it. And then he proceeds to make even MORE stupid decisions and companionships to try to ease his broken heart. If the relationship between Pandora and Marius isn't one of your favorites then strap in, because three-quarters of the book is Marius going on and ON about how Pandora is the love of his life, and how his obsession with painting goes hand-in-hand with her image creeping into all of his paintings, and how much better everything would be if he could find her again. I love the story of Marius's life in Rome and Venice, but I just couldn't buy that he would be THAT fixated on Pandora, especially since his search for her was hardly even mentioned in all the previous books. It was almost satisfying to see his passionate moping lead to him stupidly losing any chance he had at two previous relationships (three, including Armand), and end up entirely on his own. Again.Great book in spite of it all. Any time Anne wants to write more books set in Venice, I'm all for it.


Marius de Romanus is definitely one of the best characters of the Vampire Chronicles and, along with Louis, is my favorite. With that said, I was anxious to read this book, which details the life of this Child of the Millenia. However, the trip that I had anticipated was not what I got in the end. Contradictions between this book and The Vampire Armand are some of the things that annoy me the most, especially since both stories are deeply intertwined. Bianca as a character has no appeal to me, Thorne has no real purpose for being in the story outside of being Marius' confidant and (view spoiler)[ killing Santino for him, which spoils the entire tension that Rice built between them through the entire book (hide spoiler)].The ending is disappointing and so abrupt that I can't help but feel it's incomplete. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

Patrick Atchison

The only book that I have ever been able to read cover to cover multiple times!


The cover of this book really caught my attention since it pictures a slightly gay looking angel wrapped in a ribbon. Blood and Gold is the first of Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles I have read and it’s not a let down. The style of the writing is romantic and detailed, or as my English teacher described it “curly q baroque” type writing. I’ll admit it’s not a short read at all and I took my time pondering the texture and words of the book. Marius the main character is complex and struggles with the positive and negative aspects of being a vampire in the Roman ages through the present. The thing I really like is that we don’t meet Marius until almost two chapters in. After which by certain circumstances another character meets Marius and asks for his life story. The settings pop out from the pages and into your head. Anne Rice swallows you up into ancient times. Marius is a sort of ladies man but then again he is a vampire. He has many love interests in the book both male and female but his main flame is Pandora the woman he seeks all his life after fighting with her centuries ago. This is not THE Pandora that pops open the box, she's just a curious and drop dead gorgeous vampire. As Marius tells his life story he reveals the origins of the blood drinkers aka vampires. Basically he spends his life protecting the sleeping statues of the Blessed Mother Akasha and her mate Enkil. For Marius the chosen one he worships the immovable statues at their cold stone feet (literally). The plot story in the sense of romance is very similar to Twilight. Boy meets girl, girl meets boy they spend a couple decades infatuated with each other then BOOM one little argument and they are separated for centuries only to repeat the cycle once again. Anyway the book is very well written and Rice is not shy when it comes to writing erotic scenes (although she isn't vulgar) some scenes made me blush. Overall it deals with a man-sure he's supernatural with the power of a god (or three) but nevertheless he is struggling to find his place in the very human world and finding love. At the end of the day isn’t that's what we're all looking for...minus the blood sucking desire and immortal flesh.

Carrie Slager

If not for Pandora, Blood and Gold would be my favourite novel by Anne Rice. The story of Marius, a logical Roman man, kidnapped and turned into a vampire against his will. But what stands out for me is the amazing amount of detail Anne Rice puts into her historical fiction. The splendor of ancient Rome, the horror of the Black Death, the energy and creativity surrounding the Italian Renaissance…all of the settings come alive and you feel like you’re really there along with Marius.Marius himself is a very complex character. His traditional Roman upbringing and his naturally logical personality clash very well with Pandora’s free spirit and dreamy personality and it makes for a very interesting relationship. However, since Pandora mostly focused on their relationship, Anne Rice doesn’t spend nearly as much time on it. Instead, she focuses on the relationship between Marius and Armand, his student and the courtesan Bianca in Renaissance Italy. Blood and Gold certainly fills in a lot of the questions I had from reading The Vampire Armand. If nothing else, it paints Marius in a more sympathetic light!Blood and Gold isn’t for everyone. If you get annoyed by long, detailed descriptions of historical events and daily life, you won’t enjoy Blood and Gold. But for someone like me, who loves it when a writer showcases their knowledge of the era, Blood and Gold is perfect.I give this book 5/5 stars.

Titus Hjelm

Not the worst (see 'Memnoch' for that) but certainly the most boring of all the Chronicles so far. I pretty much gave up on the series after 'Queen', but since I bought the whole lot, I'm wading through it still. However, it took me this long to realise that the problem with Rice's writing is that there is no beginning, middle and end. Funnily enough, real life biographies have more sense of a dramatic arch than this book, for example. The 'exotic' settings have become old hat pretty much since the second book and even if Marius is Rice's most developed character as some here claim--although I'm not sure--his predicament is also pretty much a rehash of whatever the other characters in the series have gone through in their respective tales. Also, the secondary characters in this book become real mainly through the fact that the knowledgeable reader connects them with earlier books in the series. Not worth the 570 pages. And don't these vampires ever shut up?

Delicious Strawberry

I was glad to pick up the tale of Marius. After reading about him in The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned, along with Pandora, I was thrilled to read the back of this book with the synopsis. Of course, I had to buy it right away. I took it home and read it with eagerness. Ms. Rice's work is solid here and the story is very good, but while many parts are interesting to read, nearly half of it was repetition, and I wished that the Twins had been featured in this book more, especially Mekare. One thing I enjoyed was the appearance of Bianca. I absolutely loved that part, I think it was my favorite.The ending left something to be desired. Not that it was a bad one per se, but it just... felt kind of rushed to me, quickly slapped together. I was happy to see the Twins, but their appearance was woefully brief and Ms. Rice could have focused more on that instead of repetition of what we already knew about Marius.I'm just sad that the world of the vampires wasn't truly explored more after this, because there had been so much potential for exploring the vampire world, and it ended with this book.

Chelsea chan

This book is the most enriching when it comes to being lost in the vampire chronicles world. It is great for anyone that hasn't read the whole series because it explains everything about the supernatural world according to Anne Rice, unlike the previous books before this. it was a bit boring in some parts, but in all it was worth it and i enjoyed this book.


The primary question with this book, the sixth in Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, is, why would we, the readers, want to read a book from the point of view of the self christened Marius de Romanus, the Roman vampire with a tendency towards pederasty and pompous pronouncements?This question becomes even more pressing as the book goes on and Marius proves himself entirely arrogant and obnoxious, applying a form of moral blindness that makes his own actions acceptable while everyone else's deserve to be punished harshly. It's like watching a train wreck, seeing all the relationships of his 2,000 year life fail almost entirely because of his faults. Neither do we have a redeemingly interesting frame story to carry us through - Marius tells his story of an equally irritating fellow vampire named Thorne, after the two new aquantainces have (listen to this) taken a bath together.There are a few entirely fascinating characters, such as the Greek vampire Eudoxia, who practically rules over the other vampires in Constaintinople, but Marius rather ends up destroying their lives, which merely serves to make us detest our protaganist further.Not recommended, unless you want to finish the series or really, really like Marius.

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