Anne Rice is the author of thirty-five books. She lives in Palm
Full of provocative moral reflections, this kickoff to bestseller Rice's new Songs of the Seraphim religious romance series centers on hired assassin Toby O'Dare, a one-time aspirant to the priesthood until personal tragedy unmoored his life. Guardian angel Malchiah visits Toby, who's just consummated his latest kill, and offers him redemption for his sins. After accepting the offer, Toby is whisked away to 13th-century England, where, in the guise of a Dominican friar, he becomes the protector of a Jewish couple accused wrongly by the gentile populace of having murdered their young daughter for her conversion to Christianity. Two eloquently told if clunkily joined digressions give the backstory on Toby and on the persecution of the Jews in medieval Europe. Readers will revel in Rice's colorful recreation of the historical past and in her moving depiction of characters struggling to reconcile matters of the heart with their personal sense of faith. 250,000 first printing. (Oct.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
In Rice's latest, an assassin meets an angel who puts him to work for God. Although "Lucky the Fox" has always justified his contract killing by letting himself believe he was really working for the proverbial "good guys," the seraph takes Lucky back to the 1200s and gives him the task of preventing a pogrom against Jews accused of ritually murdering Christian children. Readers of Rice's "Vampire Chronicles" and "Mayfair Witch" sagas develop a deep connection with protagonists Lestat and Rowan Mayfair, but it is hard to relate to Lucky. However, the novel is more fluid and action-oriented than Rice's recent trilogy about Jesus. At the heart of this odd mix of metaphysical thriller and historical novel is one man's rediscovery of his religious beliefs. Verdict While smoothly written and full of Rice's noted descriptive detail, this title may disappoint fans of her wildly popular series about vampires and witches, while Christian readers who know Rice only as a paranormal writer will probably avoid it unless they have read her Jesus novels. Finding the proper audience may prove to be the hardest battle for this intriguing book. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/09; with a 250,000-copy first printing.]-Amanda Scott, Cambridge Springs P.L., PA Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"Thrilling. . . . [Readers] will feel divinely entertained."
"Veers delightfully into vintage Rice." -Elle
"Intriguing. . . . A richly enveloping atmosphere." -The Times Picayune
"Rice brings an energy and sincerity to her story." -USA Today
"A masterpiece that both invites and provokes." -L.A. Examiner