Anne Rice lives in New Orleans with her husband, the poet and painter Stan Rice.
Quinn Blackwood, the young heir of the large Blackwood estate, recounts the saga of his family's dark and mysterious past to Lestat, explains the unusual relationship he has with his lifetime spirit-companion "Goblin," and concludes with the tale of how he was made a vampire. He entreats Lestat to help him deal with Goblin, whose character has menacingly changed since becoming a blood-hunter. Rice includes in Blackwood Farm characters from both the "Vampire Chronicles" and the "Mayfair Witches" series, but she fails to build much suspense and finishes with a rushed and unsatisfying ending. Quinn's florid and overemotional speech patterns are at odds with the novel's contemporary setting, but reader David Pittu makes excellent work of the melodramatic language and varied voices and accents, imbuing the work with a style and pathos that it may otherwise lack. Recommended, as it is likely to be popular despite the flaws.-Kristen L. Smith, Loras Coll. Lib., Dubuque, IA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Just in time for Halloween, Rice's latest gothic epic blends her beloved Vampire Chronicles with her Mayfair Witches series. Near the dank Sugar Devil Swamp, sinister bayou country where critters far more fearsome than gators lurk, overheated Quinn Blackwood suffers a protracted case of adolescent angst driven by his violent love-hate relationship with Goblin, his spirit-world doppelganger. As heir to Blackwood Farm and an enormous fortune, Quinn enjoys every luxury the decadent Deep South of Rice's imagination can provide, from culinary delicacies to Jasmine, his equally satisfying mulatto housekeeper. Seemingly hell-bent on seducing everyone within range, regardless of gender, age or consanguinity, he falls into a passionate but fatal relationship with 15-year-old nymphomaniac Mona Mayfair, offshoot of the Mayfair clan of witches. But he cannot control Goblin's ferocious jealousy or his nefarious double's taste for blood, particularly once Quinn is made into a Blood Hunter by Petronia, a malignant bisexual spirit who stalks the haunted family cemetery at the edge of the swamp. Rice fleshes out her slim plot line with gory set pieces of vampire history in ancient Athens, Pompeii and 19th-century Naples. She excels at vivid descriptions of macabre landscapes, gloomy estate houses and the lust that motivates her Blood Hunters and propels her ghoulish narratives. Her dialogue and characterizations, however-even of the durable Vampire Lestat, called upon by Quinn for deliverance from Goblin and Sugar Devil Swamp's unholy spirits-are flat and predictable here. But it's intrigue, eroticism and obsession that fans want, and they'll find plenty of all three. (Oct. 31) Forecast: With a first printing of 500,000, a major ad/marketing campaign (TV, radio and print) and a four-city author tour, this title-a dual main selection of BOMC and an alternate selection of Literary Guild, Doubleday Book Club, Mystery Guild, Science Fiction and QPB-is poised to continue Rice's legacy of stellar sales. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
"Rice breathes new life into the long-running Vampire Chronicles with the tale of Quinn Blackwood, a young vampire haunted by a menacing doppelganger....Rather than extrapolating from previous Vampire Chronicles, the latest presents a completely fresh story, a gripping gothic yarn that revives the series." -- Booklist
"Rice's books have always had a sexy edge, and she's not gone
stale." -- Metro Weekly (Washington D.C.) "At least as good
as Rice's earliest novels because she centers her story on new
characters with interesting stories of their own. Using lush,
voluptuous prose, Rice tells a complex and mesmerizing story.
Recommended." -- Library Journal
"Blood refreshed for Rice: Vampiric intrigue returns in Blackwood. Blackwood Farm is strong and continues the return to form for Rice that began with Merrick." -- The Denver Post
"Blackwood Farm is Anne Rice's best book in years. In fact, it may be necessary to go back to the initial trio of vampire novels to find one that flows with as much grace and continuity. Not only is it beautifully descriptive; it is wonderfully scripted -- with all sorts of unexpected turns.... Rice fires all the weapons in her storyteller's quiver -- including several kinky, sexually explicit scenes. She uses surprisingly short chapters, most ending with a suspenseful note that practically begs the reader to move on for just one more page." -- Miami Herald
"Quinn's story is beautifully haunting. His tale is like a curiosity shop, filled with lovely and unusual things.... There is an intimacy to Blackwood Farm that makes readers feel as though they are an important part of Quinn's world. And it's a world they won't want to leave." -- Detroit Free Press "Classic Anne Rice...hard to put down... Fans of Rice will enjoy this novel, since it is a return to the form that originally drew so many into her bizarre subworld of blood drinkers and witches in the first place." -- United Press International
"Blackwood Farm is a collection of unexpected twists and turns. Rice implements all of her tricks -- spirits, ghosts, vampires, witches, strong family bonds, platonic and forbidden romantic love. The finale should elicit a squeal of excitement from readers who thought Rice was merely going through the motions. Luckily, that lull has passed. Blackwood Farm closes with enough unearthed family secrets to fill another novel and a cliffhanger that promises a sequel." -- The Charlotte Observer Praise for Anne Rice:
"Rice's strengths as a writer [include] her knack for colourful characters, her loving attention to historical detail [and] her imaginative exploration of myth and mysticism." -- The Globe and Mail "[Merrick] is a book where Rice's two worlds -- of witches and vampires -- finally collide." -- Ottawa Citizen