The Tale of the Body Thief (The Vampire Chronicles #4)

ISBN: 034538475X
ISBN 13: 9780345384751
By: Anne Rice

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About this book

For centuries, Lestat --- vampire-hero, enchanter, seducer of mortals --- has been a courted prince in the dark and flourishing universe of the living dead. Now Lestat is alone. And suddenly all his vampire rationale --- everything he has come to believe and feel safe with --- is called into question. In his overwhelming need to destroy his doubts and his loneliness, Lestat embarks on the most dangerous enterprise he has undertaken in all the danger-haunted years of his long existence ...

Reader's Thoughts


Lestat got in trouble, and became HUMAN! And wanted his Vampire body back! What a neat twist and insight into the character of this impulsive Lestat! Great read, and continuation of the vampire series, but different direction. Excellent read.


This was one of my favourite Anne Rice books probably because she changes things a bit. The book is all modern day with no back history at all. That in itself is a first for this series. Lestat is bored. Bored of his life and bored of hanging out with the other vampires at Armand's place.He's approached by some guy and against all advice decides to body swap for a couple of days. He could fly!! Why would he want to be ordinary? Things obviously go wrong and he gets David from the Talamasca to help him get his body back. The book is lots of fun, Lestat is so cool and David who is a bit in love with him is a great addition to the book.This is lots of fun, Lestat as a human was amusing, I was laughing at a lot of his reactions. So I'd recommend this book, but I think you have to read them in order or there's no chance of understanding the characters.


I really like this book, it is from Lesats point of view and is interesting. Lesat is being followed by a man, a human man, who offers him a chance to be human again. Against his friends wishes he takes the deal which leads to horrible results. This book has some small problems, but the last chapters 32 and on really made me want to throw the book at the wall the first time I read it. Now I understand it but it still upsets me.


Lestat, Lestat, little devil, you. I liked this one even though I think I may need to take a little break from Ms. Rice because I did find that Lestat would go on and on. My husband swears that's the way it's been in every book but it never bothered me until this one. Well..I don't know if bothered is the right word...just a feeling of, ok...that's nice about the monkeys and all but really...can we get on with the story?? I really like the way she writes and felt the premise of the story was good. I liked the references to other pieces of literature...most of which I was familiar with. Very clever. I also did feel that this really was the story of lestat, even more than the Vampire Lestat. I felt that book was all about how he became a vampire and his adventure...but this was more about who LeStat was and the struggles he was going through in trying to 'find himself', for lack of a better term.


• I thought that this is by far Anne Rice’s best description of Lestat’s true character. Everything he did in this book was exactly what I would expect someone who is supposed to be so selfish and evil to do. Throughout the rest of the books Rice tries so hard to tell you that Lestat is really not good, that he can do evil things, and she tries desperately to make him into this anti-hero. This is the first book where I think she does a really good job of it. This makes me want to read more about Lestat. In Queen of the Damned, it seemed like she tried to tell a story while telling us all about her vampires’ history. I think that if she would have either done one or the other, the result would have been good, but as it turned out, both the story and the history faltered. This was purely a story. A list of interesting and suspenseful events that kept me interested.

Sofia Teixeira

Esta obra é, sem dúvida, das melhores de Anne Rice. Pelo menos das que li até hoje. Lestat é uma personagem que ficará para sempre gravada na minha memória. Quando pensamos que ele já ultrapassou todos os limites que podia, enganamo-nos redondamente!Lestat fartou-se de ser vampiro! E quando descobre a existência de um 'ladrão de corpos' não resiste à tentação de querer voltar a ser humano! De querer voltar a sentir a luz do sol no seu rosto, de sentir o sabor da comida e de fazer amor com um homem ou uma mulher. Mas como é que pode confiar o seu corpo, com todos os seus poderes, a um ladrão sem escrúpulos que faz tudo pelo gosto de tomar posse do que não lhe pertence? Que garantias tem ele de, se a experiência correr mal, voltar a ter o seu corpo de volta?Uma personagem que volta a aparecer e que é fundamental no meio desta trama toda é David Talbot. Este é o general superior da Talamas, o grupo que estuda e documenta actividades paranormais. Depois do contacto anterior com Lestat em que se tornou seu amigo, David continua a negar a Dádiva Negra que este tanto lhe deseja dar. Quando Lestat lhe conta sobre o seu plano de se tornar humano, David avisa-o que não pode confiar de maneira nenhuma no ladrão de corpos.Claro que as coisas acabam por dar para o torto e quando Lestat vai ter com Louis, já na sua forma humana, este nega-lhe qualquer ajuda e apenas David está disposto a ajudá-lo. Lestat enquanto humano passa por situações que nos apertam o coração. Chega a estar numa agonia de tal forma que já só deseja o seu corpo antigo de volta, sem conseguir sequer dar valor ao que ele pensava que ia dar.Um livro de uma acção estonteante, cheio de aventuras e experiências que sinceramente me surpreenderam, levando-me a uma leitura extremamente compulsiva. Gostei muito.Originalmente publicado em:

Soukyan Blackwood

Lestat in this particular book in fact reminded me of Lovecraft's beings. It made no sense for him to do some of the things, to express some of his feelings and to just... well, do what he did, and yet he did it and it made perfect sense. He claimed to be evil, and if you're blinded by love, believing he is not capable of truly doing something evil... It seems like he took it almost as a personal challenge to himself to defy these ideas of goodness and I loved it.


** spoiler alert ** Another great book in the Vampire Chronicles, and possibly one of my favourites so far...We already knew that Lestat is awesome; the petulant, selfish, petty and yet incredibly charming, intelligent and seductive vampire hero of the series, and through this book we must now add another descriptive - hilarious.Rice solves the problem of having a near invincible hero through a concept that I thought worked incredibly well; by having him take part in a trade - his body for that of a mortal man, for a period of 2 nights and a day, believing that the dream of vampires is to be reborn again as human. When the Body Thief (the guy he's traded with) promptly disappears (which, of course he was going to Lestat, you bloody idiot) Lestat finds it more a nightmare than a dream being stuck in such a fragile body and starts a desperate search for the fiend so he can recover his own and wreak revenge.Rice really has a firm grasp on Lestat's voice now and he's never less than entertaining (even while being a complete bastard), but never more so than during his period stuck in the mortal body. His complete wretchedness and fits of near hysteria every time he has to do something simple like walking on a rug (he could fall and smash his head open) or shaving his beard (he's bound to slit his throat), along with his temper tantrums (his arson attack on Louis' home during a fit of pique, and his protests of 'I'm the leader!' during the assembling of his new coven are just a couple of such great moments) had me guffawing loudly. It'll be extremely interesting to see how the dynamics of this new group play themselves out over the coming books (if they do at all), and I'm looking forward to them immensely.


I loved, 'The Tale of the Body Theif!' I simply loved, love Lestat de Lioncourt, my 'Bratty Prince!' He is almost like a child with his fearlessness, couriousity, and yes, even his fits of temper... And when given the opportunity to switch forms and become Mortal once more, despite the dangers and warnings against it, for the span of 24 hours, how can he resist?! Now, when the 'Body Theif' takes off, with his powerful and lovely form, and leaves him in this mortal body... That's when the fun begins. Seeking help and finding it, in the brilliant David Talbot, they begin their journey to recovering his true form. And, it's a journey I could not get enough of.

David B

Weary of immortality and longing for some form of redemption, the vampire Lestat impulsively accepts the offer of a sorcerer to exchange bodies for two days. It comes as no surprise that there is a double-cross, and Lestat is trapped in the body of a human. He enlists the aid of his friend David Talbot, an elite member of the Talamasca, a secret organization that studies supernatural phenomena. Together, they must find a way to unseat the wizard from Lestat's super powerful body and restore the vampire to his rightful shell.Like the previous book in the series, "Queen of the Damned," this one takes a while to get going. In fact, a full 200 pages pass before reflection and philosophy finally recede a bit and a plot begins to assert itself. Once it does, though, the book really takes off and turns out to be a terrific read with a surprising ending. I wish Anne Rice would get better at integrating her themes and her plots so that we could be spared these long, meandering prologues (however insightful they may be) before the action starts.

Gary Galehouse

She's way too in love with her own writing at this point. Takes ten pages to describe the front of a mansion. In the words of the great Casey Kasem: Ponderous man, f'ing ponderous.


This one was took the series back up a notch for me. I was dissapointed in Queen of the Damned.


The first Rice novel I ever read. I was in Bari, Italy, waiting for the ferry to take me to Corfu, Greece. I was reading a hideously boring Candadian novel, and the young lady in line next to me was reading The Tale of the Body Thief. We switched books. I had never heard of Anne Rice. I fell in love with the book. Soon after, when I was in Sorrento a few weeks later, I was searching for any Rice books I could find. Her writing is lush. Reading this book was like wearing a mink coat inside-out i.e. you feel the soft luxurious fur on your skin. Lestat, the main character, is a very egotistical vampire, yet he is very amicable. The story is very interesting. It is a man hunt. Someone has tricked Lestat into switching bodies, so Lestat becomes a mere human. Lestat and his friend must find the "body thief". The action is not abundant and not thrilling. What attracts you to the story and keeps you reading is the language Rice uses and the character of Lestat. I highly recommend this book.

Carrie Slager

The Tale of the Body Thief is the fourth book in Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles, but by this book, it seems like her heart wasn’t really in to writing it. While the premise of the novel is interesting enough and her descriptions are just as wonderful, it seems to lack the spirit and enthusiasm of the first three books. It seems as if she was pressured into writing a fourth book to capitalize on her series’ fame and that’s the worst reason for any author to write a book.Even though it feels like Anne Rice had to continue the series because of its immense popularity, Lestat is still as complex as ever and after being a vampire for so long, he struggles as a human. It’s amazing to see him struggle over things that normal humans do every day, like eating and going to the bathroom. Along the way he meets David Talbot, a former member of the supernatural secret society, the Talamasca. Together they discover that the man Lestat switched bodies with has no intention of switching back and they hatch a plot to get Lestat back in his proper body.I’ll add my usual warning: this is not a fast-paced novel. Yes, it has an interesting plot, but no, it is not a fast plot because The Tale of the Body Thief is a character-driven novel. Anne Rice has wonderfully sensual descriptions and a compelling writing style, but as with all of the books in the Vampire Chronicles, The Tale of the Body Thief contains explicit sex scenes and other mature content. I would recommend it for ages 14 and up.I give this book 3/5 stars.


Better than The Vampire Lestat and The Queen of the Damned. I can't really say what I liked about this one without giving away the plot of the story. However, once you realise what/who the body thief is, you know for sure that Lestat is going to put himself in danger - the daredevil that he is. The risk is well worth taking and this is a good read.

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