The Queen of the Damned (The Vampire Chronicles #3)

ISBN: 0345351525
ISBN 13: 9780345351524
By: Anne Rice

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About this book

Did you ever wonder where all those mischievous vampires roaming the globe in Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles came from? In this, the third book in the series, we find out. That raucous rock-star vampire Lestat interrupts the 6,000-year slumber of the mama of all bloodsuckers, Akasha, Queen of the Damned. Akasha was once the queen of the Nile (she has a bit in common with the Egyptian goddess Isis), and it's unwise to rile her now that she's had 60 centuries of practice being undead. She is so peeved about male violence that she might just have to kill most of them. And she has her eye on handsome Lestat with other ideas as well. If you felt that the previous books in the series weren't gory and erotic enough, this one should quench your thirst (though it may cause you to omit organ meats from your diet). It also boasts God's plenty of absorbing lore that enriches the tale that went before, including the back-story of the boy in Interview with the Vampire and the ancient fellowship of the Talamasca, which snoops on paranormal phenomena. Mostly, the book spins the complex yarn of Akasha's eerie, brooding brood and her nemeses, the terrifying sisters Maharet and Mekare. In one sense, Queen of the Damned is the ultimate multigenerational saga. --Tim Appelo

Reader's Thoughts

Nicola O.

I kept waiting for it to get interesting but it never did. It got stupider and stupider until I thought my brains were leaking out. If I were on a desert island with nothing to read but this book, I would scratch out old 80's pop lyrics with a twig in the sand before trying to read this dreck again.

Lisa

...or why Lestat should have been careful what he'd wished for.Another excellent book in the series, the world of the vampires is expanded once again (and then significantly decreased - spoiler!), and the mythology traced back into ancient history. I love how Rice mixes the historical and fantastical, and the story of how vampires were created gave me oodles of pleasure. The Queen is a fantastic character, and the mix of her absolute power along with her, at times, all too human thoughts and ideas made for wonderful reading. Having loved the Mayfair Witches trilogy, I was pleased to see the return of the Talamasca, and hope that they'll be making more appearances in the series (and judging by Lestat's final bit of mischief I should think they will be).Lestat, again, steals the show simply by being his magnificent self (and the opening prologue by him? Awesome. Yes, Lestat - you really are a gorgeous fiend). Sigh, and yet another literary crush is born...

Wendie Collins

This is my favorite Anne Rice book! Akasha, the goddess- my goddess! :) How can you not love a vampire queen gone mad and taken to killing all the men in the world??... ah yes save for one the brat prince! Sounds like a great plan to me! That was left out of the movie! Among many many other things! Speaking of the movie, although I thought it was a pretty good vampire flick and Aaliyah is perfect for Akasha, besides the names, there wasn't much resemblance to the book. I was disappointed with how far it fell from from the story line. Anne Rice truly captivates me in this tale however and this book is gripping. How she describes Akasha & Enkil and ties their existence to the Egyptian legends of Isis and Osiris is awesome! She explains a story of creation for her vampires that is incomparable! It is truly captivating, and believable! This book is a MUST read for all Lestat and/or Anne Rice fans.

Stefan Yates

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. Ms. 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!

Austin James

"The Queen of the Damned" is the third book in Anne Rice's vampire chronicles. Out of the three I read this was probably my least favorite. Don't get me wrong. It's not a bad book. It's just not as good as the previous two books.The story starts off where the last book (The Vampire Lestat) ends. I find Rice's books to be the best when they are narrated from the first person. Much of this book isn't done in first person. The story jumps around from character to character. Also, the core of the story isn't really about Lestat (A character I, like many others like very much). It's about Akasha (The Queen of the Damned) and two witches who lived in Egypt long ago. Never the less, it's still and interesting story and it was an enjoyable read. The next Anne Rice book I'm going to read is "The Mummy or Ramses the Dead."I would give this book three out of five stars.Originally reviewed on my blog at http://www.AustinJamesHere.blogspot.com

Kiki

Far and away the best work in the entire Vampire Chronicles, Queen of the Damned left me hanging on the edge of my seat from cover to cover. Unlike the other books in the series, it picks up exactly where the previous book, The Vampire Lestat left off. Anne Rice has long been one of my favorite authors and this one does not disappoint. Told in Rice's glorious, sensuous style, readers are taken on quite a strange trip--from the ancient sands of pre-dynastic Egypt to a San Francisco rock concert.I recommend you read both of these books before you read Queen of the Damned, to get the appropriate background. In Queen of the Damned, Lestat has just made his Hollywood debut. He has penned an autobiography, entiltled The Vampire Lestat. He has started a band(also called The Vampire Lestat), and has set a date for a concert on Halloween.And Louis and Lestat finally...kiss! Oh, the horror! The tale spirals from every corners of the world, going from mythic Egypt to today's modern rock-scene world. Anne Rice brings the stake to a whole new level with this book.

M.J. Heiser

** spoiler alert ** If Ayn Rand had written her capitalist manifesto, "Atlas Shrugged," half this well, we'd have several second-world countries STILL trying to prove that she was a visionary, and that her system could work -- because never doubt that "The Queen of the Damned" is a philosophical screed, and the best of its kind.For me, this is still the ultimate vampire novel. Anne Rice doesn't just have creepy-crawlies in her stories. She doesn't just animate corpses. She doesn't just give them heartbroken souls and immortal, wealthy flair. She doesn't just have a huge cast of characters, and flip between points of view with seeming ease and grace. No, Anne Rice has a MESSAGE, and she means to tell it here. Through the prism of vampire magic, we're given a view of the vastness of time and the evolving role of Man in the world. We see through the veil all the way to ancient times, and we meet the representative of all ancient rulers in the person of Akasha, the so-called "Queen of the Damned." Akasha is cruel and self-serving; she strives always to find meaning in the world and despairs that there is none, so she takes it upon herself to become that meaning. She did it in old Egypt (called Kemet in this tale) by constantly rationalizing herself as blessed among mortals, all the while doubting that anything supernatural existed that could bestow such a blessing. When, through a misadventure in manipulation of Earth spirits, she becomes the world's first vampire (and subsequently makes her husband one as well), she spins the tale of Osiris and Iris to justify her existence as a goddess.Fast forward to nearly-modern day, and the awakening of Akasha from her centuries-long slumber. After draining her ancient mate, she slays nearly all of the vampires on the planet, then abducts Lestat, the charming vampire rake who woke her, and unleashes her plan for vampires to rescue mankind by death to 90% of all males. After all, she blames the male sex for all the wars and rapes and subjugation in the world, and she takes it upon herself and her overwhelming strength to fix it. Lestat is employed as her death angel, but eventually she is forced to confront the vampires she spared from the fury that began the book. They try to reason with her, but as they observed, every vampire bears the mark of the time that produced them; she is ancient, and she is bound to ancient instincts and her ancient megalomania. She won't be turned. Fortunately, an old curse rises and she is killed, but the book left its mark.Does mankind deserve a chance to get it all right on its own, or would it indeed be better if a supernatural force of some kind (any kind) intervened to show us the way? Would the world be a paradise if governed solely by women? Does violence justify the results?It is for the sake of this book's ability to make me think, and to give me the room to decide for myself, that I love it so much. Yes, Rice offers her own opinion, sprinkled through the tale and especially weighty in the outcome, but that doesn't lessen the underlying message that in the end, we are ALL masters of our own fate and sovereigns over our own reality. Even if you decide to forfeit your right to decide for yourself, you're the one who turned over the control to another.

Emily

Queen of the Damned picks up where The Vampire Lestat leaves off, introduces us to new and interesting vampires, and deals with the question of what happens when the Queen wakes.The Legend of the Twins is entrancing, and Rice unfolds the origin of vampires in a definitive manner. More backstory is given on all the major players, but enough is left unsaid to provide fodder for many more Vampire Chronicles. Also interesting was the introduction of the Talamasca, and meeting Aaron Lightner for the first time. I read the Mayfair Witches books first, so it was really nice 'seeing' him again here.The only thing I really didn’t like was Stan Rice’s unintelligible poetry at the beginnings of some chapters.

dragonhelmuk

** spoiler alert ** Kindled for £4.67. Amazing book. The age, the minds and the personalities of all of the characters are among the best thought out I've ever read of. And there is definitely something compelling and likeable, even fascinating about each of them. Sadly though, there are some problems the vampires frequently get completely distracted, and even faint from the power of their own thoughts all the time, and they are all as queasy and fashion conscious as Victorians. Also either Anne Rice's own logic is childish, or all her characters are as easily bedazzled by pretty arguments and sparkly things as Greeks. Witness their complete acceptance of the misandric queen's argument that, essentially, the world would be a better place with no men. Two quotes...(Meeting of the undead)“How many?” … Armand again had the lost expression, the expression that belonged to deep concentration, as if what he saw before him meant nothing at all. “Thirty perhaps,” he whispered in Daniel’s ear, “no more than that, and one or two so old they could destroy the rest of us in an instant.”…The name had done it, as names so often do. The creature had felt himself known, recognized. And Khayman had recognized the name at once, connecting it with the Mael of Lestat’s pages. Undoubtedly they were one and the same—this was the Druid priest who had lured Marius into the sacred grove where the blood god had made him one of its own, and sent him off to Egypt to find the Mother and the Father. Yes, this was the same Mael. And the creature felt himself recognized and hated it. After the initial spasm of rage, all thought and emotion vanished. A rather dizzying display of strength, Khayman conceded. He relaxed in the chair. But the creature couldn’t find him. Two dozen other white faces he picked out of the crowd, but not Khayman.…Khayman spied another intriguing figure, much younger, yet almost as powerful in his own fashion as the Gaul, Mael. Khayman sought for the name, but the creature’s mind was a perfect blank; not so much as a glimmer of personality escaped from it. A boy he’d been when he died, with straight dark auburn hair, and eyes a little too big for his face. But it was easy, suddenly to filch the being’s name from his newborn fledgling who stood beside him. Armand… And this meant the he was no more than five hundred years old, yet he veiled himself completely. Shrewd, cold he seemed, yet without flair—a stance that required no room in which to display itself. And now, sensing infallibly that he was watched, he turned his large soft brown eyes upward and fixed instantly upon the remote figure of Khayman.(About the Talamasca)“Talamasca.” The word struck Daniel suddenly as beautiful. Talamasca. He broke it down from the Latin, understood its parts. Somewhere out of his memory bank it came: animal mask. Old word for witch or shaman.…there were museums beneath the building, rooms crammed with mysterious objects connected with paranormal occurrences. There were vaults to which no one was admitted except the senior members of the order. Delicious, the prospect of secrets revealed only over a period of time.…the dignified furnishings, the stone fireplaces, the gleaming oak floors. Even the quiet civil members of the order appealed to her, as they greeted her cheerfully, then returned to their discussions or the reading of the evening papers, as they sat about the vast, warmly lighted public rooms. The sheer wealth of the place was startling. It lent substance to Lightner’s claims. And the place felt good. Psychically good. People here were what they said they were.…Then the history of the Talamasca itself proved powerfully attractive. Was this man telling the truth? A secret order, which traced its existence back to the year 758, an order with records of witches, sorcerers, mediums, and seers of spirits going back to that remote period?…“That painting of yours, The Temptation of Amadeo, the one in the Talamasca crypt...” “Yes?” “Wouldn’t you like to have it back?” “Ye gods, no. It’s a dreary thing, really. My black period, you might say. But I do wish they’d take it out of the damned cellar. You know, hang it in the front hall? Some decent place.” I laughed. Suddenly he became serious. Suspicious. “Lestat!” he said sharply. “Yes, Marius.” “You leave the Talamasca alone!”(Sadly none of Anne Rice’s characters are yet old or wise enough to argue against her own biases.)“What if the women divide along principles of masculine/feminine, the way men so often divide if there are no females there?” “You know that’s a foolish objection. Such distinctions are never more than superficial. Women are women! Can you conceive of war made by women? Truly, answer me. Can you? Can you conceive of bands of roving women intent only on destruction? Or rape? Such a thing is preposterous. For the aberrant few justice will be immediate. But overall, something utterly unforeseen will take place. Don’t you see? The possibility of peace on earth has always existed, and there have always been people who could realize it, and preserve it, and those people are women. If one takes away the men.”

Matthew Leeth

** spoiler alert ** I really liked this book and all the interwoven stories and characters. I actually liked Akasha until she kept blabbing on and on about her 'plan' of killing all the men of the world. I can see why they killed her... She should have just went along with them, maybe she would have lived longer. I liked Jesse a lot, her character was really interesting. The Claudia cameo was awesome, and the diary excerpt was cool. Kind of made me want Anne to write a full length Claudia diary. This book was a really good addition to the series. I wished Lestat's musical career would have lasted longer. Louis and Gabrielle being in this book was good also, I never get tired of those characters. They rank up there for me. I also liked Maharet and her twin sister was pretty bad-ass. All she had to do was push Akasha into a glass wall to kill her, the glass chopped her head off. Then... they ate her brain and heart to keep the vampires alive. GOOD GOOD book. I could write a whole lot more, but yeah.READ THIS BOOK!!!

Francisco

Tercera parte de las Crónicas Vampíricas. Agotada totalmente la creatividad, se suman vampiros y vísceras hasta llenar un montón de páginas innecesarias. Superflua.

James

After chugging my way through Interview with a Vampire and Vampire Lestat, I finally completed The Queen of the Damned, an interesting if somewhat bloated work by Anne Rice. Anne’s written plenty of books in her vampire chronicles but I think I’ll stop here and savor it. The Children of the Darkness have their “Baltimore Catechism” (as Anne says) in The Queen of the Damned. The book does a pretty good job of catching up the new reader, but it’s better to read Lestat first. As in Lestat, the books actually appear as characters in this very story. The characters are somewhat fleshed out such as Daniel , the original writer of “Interview” who wants to be a vampire himself, following Armand all over until Mr. A acquiesces.Other characters are introduced too such as Jesse, a redhead and apparent relation to the original Twins who dealt with the Queen way back 5000 B.C.The book tends to really be slow at the start: lots of explanation, what is happening to Louis, New Orleans, the mysterious organization Talamasca, and other supernatural craziness that was at times hard to follow.Queen: Finally things start rolling mid-novel when all the characters we’ve met gather in a cabin in Sonoma and plot what they will do about the Queen, who really just wants to kill pretty much the entire male side of the human race (since men are so evil, doncha know!). I found Anne’s prose in this respect very interesting. Lestat seemed at times out of character, acquiescing to his Queen and at times even joining in the carnage rather than protest against her. That was a disappointment.The ending, I will not reveal, but I felt the final confrontation was quick and disappointing after all the build-up. The final paragraphs were fun: Lestat with his new-found power is delighting in it, and Rice sets us up for the next book. Bottom Line: Entertaining in the end, but you need the patience of an Exorcist to get through to that point! Best character: Jesse, although she was pretty much dropped from the story early on. Worse would have to be Mael, who didn’t really have much of a role to play in the final act. Recommended.

Heather

I liked it well enough. There was a lot of skipping around. There was a lot of poetry in the beginnings of chapters written by "Stan Rice" who I assume is Anne's husband? I just skipped over all of that.There was a lot in the book that I thought was superfluous. Such as the story of Baby Jenks. It was merely an obstacle in my path to finding out about Akasha and the truth to the beginnings of all of Anne Rice's vampires. I liked the stories that involved Jesse and I liked the stories that involved Khayman. Khayman's story actually made me laugh as he sought to entertain himself by dressing up in the stereotypical outfits and such. The best part of the whole book was The Legend of the Twins. Anne Rice provoked my interest with the dreams. At first I had no idea what they meant, but I knew they had to be about the beginning. She teased me with these dreams being shared by all of the vampires whose stories we read in Queen of the Damned. And finally she gave them to me. But she gave them to me in parts. She interrupted the story of the Twins with Lestat and Akasha's adventures which were boring. Although I quite like how Akasha thinks. I like her grand design for the future and the reason she awoke. I was sad to see about her end, but I knew it was coming. Overall it was enjoyable. I put it down several times and picked it back up within only a matter of days. It was by no means as good as the previous two books -- Interview with the Vampire and The Vampire Lestat... but it did give us more insight into the character of Lestat which was a driving force for me. I quite like the character of Lestat. Do I recommend the book? If you like the series, if you liked the characters from the previous books... yes. It is an integral piece of the story and is an insight further into the minds of each of the vampires of Anne Rice's world. It is the story of how all vampires from this universe came to be and is therefore an important read if you loved this universe. But be aware that it has some serious downtime.

Fangs for the Fantasy

Lestat has rocked the vampire world with his music and his book revelations. But his voice has reached far more than he imagined – it has come to the ears of Akasha, the first vampire, the Queen of the Damned. For the first time in millennia, she has woken upAnd she has plans – plans for Lestat, plans for the world of vampires and plans for all humanity.It falls for a few ancient vampires to try and stop her as she unleashes carnage to realise her vision of what the world should be.This book is 460 pages long. And like every Anne Rice books I’ve read to date it could easily be half that or less. I cannot even begin to describe the amount of redundancy and repetition there is in this book.Usually when we get a character, the author will describe a bit about them, give some insight into their background and let the rest develop as the story progresses. Not Anne Rice. In these books we get a character and before they do anything even slightly relevant we have to have their life history. Not just their life history, but if we’re really lucky, we get their ancestry back 3 generations (at least) as well. It’s boring, it’s dull, it’s utterly irrelevant to anything resembling the plot.I can’t even say there’s much in the way of coherent plot here anyway. A large part of the book involves recapping the last book. We have the dreams of the twins that just serve to be ominous foreshadowing – but are repeated and repeated and repeated and repeated over and over. I really can’t stress how repetitive this book is – this same dream is recounted not just from multiple sources but then multiple times from each source. And this is a theme throughout the books, we have multiple sources all thinking about Lestat and his music – but all thinking exactly the same thing about Lestat and his music. So we get the same thing over and overAnd when people finally gather together their grand plan is EPIC EXPOSITION. Seriously, people being slaughtered, Askasha raging away and the gang gathers to have 2 solid nights of storytelling. The most long winded, repetitive story telling imaginable. Face the enemy with long winded folktales!Then there’s the characters – all of who’s point of view we are treated to in ridiculous length – most of which are utterly irrelevant. At least Louis and Gabrielle and Armand have some history in the story and we don’t see too much from their POV, they’re recognised as being spectators. But the rest? What exactly was the point of Khayman? He just kind of sat in a corner and was ineffably sad. But we got pages and pages from his POV. Jesse? What did Jesse actually do? What was the point of her? What was the relevance of her Great Family? But she was there, her POV, her chapters worth of backstory was dragged up, we roped in the Talamasca for more pages of pointlessness – because none of it was relevant. None of it added to the overall plot. None of it added to the ending. None of her history or story was really relevant. And Daniel – another character inserted with a painfully long backstory and history with Armand who, like Louis and Gabrielle and Armand and Jesse, ended up being nothing more than a spectator for the – and I use the term loosely – action. These characters are not part of the story, they’re spectators, it’s like stopping a play in the middle so we can hear the biography of Mrs. Jones in the 3rd row of the theatre. It doesn’t matter, I have no reason to care, it’s pure paddingRead More

Anna

To this day still my favorite Vampire fiction book. I may be biased as the Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles novels were my introduction the genre. But it has stood the test of time for me. First off this is a long book, but I still couldn't put it down, despite my usual dislike of novels over about 200-300 pages. It just covers so much ground in Vampire Mythos and I think it was well worth the length. Anne Rice's crowning achievement in my estimation, it really gave life to the vampire fiction genre that is all the craze today. First off Anne Rice's vampire's are the epitome of what makes a vampire a true vampire. She does not dumb down the raw nature of these creatures and really infuses her characters with such personality that you almost feel as if you know them. I think this is truly a delight for anyone that enjoys today's vampire mania but wants more. It definitely has that to offer.

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