The Vines

The Vines

by Christopher Rice

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Overview

The dark history of Spring House, a beautifully restored plantation mansion on the outskirts of New Orleans, has long been forgotten. But something sinister lurks beneath the soil of the old estate.

After heiress and current owner Caitlin Chaisson is witness to her husband’s stunning betrayal at her birthday party, she tries to take her own life in the mansion’s cherished gazebo. Instead, the blood she spills awakens dark forces in the ground below. Chaos ensues and by morning her husband has vanished without a trace and his mistress has gone mad.

Nova, daughter to Spring House’s groundskeeper, has always suspected that something malevolent haunts the old place, and in the aftermath of the birthday party she enlists Caitlin’s estranged best friend, Blake, to help her get to the bottom of it. The pair soon realizes that the vengeance enacted by this sinister and otherworldly force comes at a terrible price.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781477826638
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 10/21/2014
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 597,301
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Christopher Rice published his bestselling debut novel, A Density of Souls, when he was twenty-two. By thirty, Rice had published four New York Times bestsellers, received a Lambda Literary Award, and been declared one of People magazine’s “Sexiest Men Alive.” His noir thriller Light Before Day was hailed as a “book of the year” by mega-bestselling author Lee Child. His most recent book, The Heavens Rise, was nominated for a Bram Stoker Award.

The son of legendary author Anne Rice, he has published short fiction in the anthologies Thriller and Los Angeles Noir. His writing has been featured in the Advocate, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and on Salon.com. With his friend and cohost Eric Shaw Quinn, Rice recently launched his own internet radio broadcast, The Dinner Party Show (TheDinnerPartyShow.com). He also recently served on the board of directors of the West Hollywood Library Fund, which helped to secure funds for a new state-of-the-art library in the heart of the city he now calls home.

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The Vines 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
jamsreadsbooks More than 1 year ago
At Spring House, it’s not just a lone ghost that haunts the property—something has awoken. Almost as if the house were alive. That’s the impression I got going into The Vines, and I thought it was a unique twist to the classic haunted house story. The book has several narrators starting with Caitlin, an heiress whom everyone loves to hate and who is taken advantage of and cheated on by her husband. Second is Nova, an educated young black woman employed at Spring that has a real chip on her shoulder. Lastly there is Blake, a homosexual male nurse that suffers from depression after witnessing the death of his lover. All of these character’s stories come together to form the mystery around Spring House. I had a hard time really deciding how I wanted to rate this book overall. At certain points it was thrilling, I wanted to know more about the mystery surrounding Spring House and the action scenes are written in wonderful detail. On the other hand I also found myself pretty disappointed with how one dimensional many of the characters were, particularly Caitlin and Nova. I just couldn’t find myself caring much about either one of them, which made it a little bit hard to remain interested in their respective roles in the plot. With Caitlin she didn’t seem to be such a bad person, but the hatred and scorn from the people around her have reduced her to being a shadow of a person, not much ever comes from her character. The development of her character is seemingly dropped, she’s just there, all blind anger and rage and while it’s understandable, she has little impact on, well, anything. Which was unexpected considering the book’s synopsis was about her. What is worse is that Nova isn’t too far off from Caitlin. While there is a part of me that likes how strong willed Nova is, it is kind of annoying how she is just as blinded by her own rage and prejudice. Even she is barely relevant to the plot, if I’m to be perfectly frank. It becomes obvious that the real story is about Blake and how he faces up to the past that has been haunting him for years. This is well and good and I enjoyed his story, but then all of the other characters just become filler and this was kind of a downer. The book just took way too long to get to that point. The focus keeps shifting before the story really starts to pick up speed and it feels like it drags a bit. I also found the ending to be a little bit cheesy, it just didn’t do it for me. Overall the book was decent, Rice has a gift for description and it was entertaining for a while. I just didn’t find this one to be particularly memorable.
LittleReadRidingHood More than 1 year ago
The thing I loved most about THE VINES is the fact that while creepy as all get out, there isn't a clear cut right & wrong/us vs. them vibe. Of course bad things do happen, but at the same time ... you understand them. Maybe even empathize with them a little? At one point while reading I turned to my husband and said "Go vines go! Kill the people!" I am pretty sure he just rolled his eyes at me and went on doing whatever he was doing at the time. But that was a fun and unexpected turn of events in a story that reminded me of a lot of the classic horror stories I have read. The story opens on a southern plantation - creepy by reputation alone - where we witness a woman being wronged emotionally. From there we follow her through an emotional spiral that leads to a desperate act - which leads to her vengeance. I won't really talk about the story much past that, I really don't like to ruin things for you! I will say that at first I didn't like the expanding cast of characters ... until suddenly I did. Not sure why that changed; maybe because I got a wider view of the world, but I never felt like I was missing out when I was with one person - I knew all the gaps would be filled. The end crept up on me, I was too involved in the story to notice the percent read getting higher and high until BAM - the book was over. While there was certainly some closure, I am not sure if I was mentally ready for the story to be over.  If you like ambiguous entities, bad people, good people, and killer plant life, then by all means pick this story up! 
tpolen More than 1 year ago
I've read two books by Christopher Rice - the first one I really liked, but had never read his other works. This second book most definitely made me a total fan. First, I have to comment on the cover - before I even saw the author's name, this cover caught my attention - the dark colors, gazebo in the background, and I had to question what was under the person's feet. This just set the tone for the book. This was a story of revenge, guilt, sorrow, bigotry, and supernatural power and New Orleans is the perfect setting for a dark tale such as this. The writing flowed easily and kept me riveted throughout this novel. I actually felt like I was the character in some parts - I felt Caitlin's betrayal over her husband's infidelity, and Blake's incredible sorrow and pain after his agonizing experience. That's talent when a writer can make you empathize to that extent. Although I really liked Blake and how, despite his tortured past, he tried to move on and create a life for himself, I was ambivalent about Caitlin. She was a complex character and seemed to be different things to different people. Other characters' opinions of her varied and, at the end, I was still conflicted about her, but she's a character I won't soon forget. This was a creepy, inventive, and well-written horror story without the gore of slasher movies and I would definitely recommend it to horror/thriller fans. The ending left open the possibility of a continuation of this story or leaving it to the reader's imagination. This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.
Bloggabook More than 1 year ago
This story really reads like a short story turned into a longer tale. The elements of a great short story are all here. However, it's the addition of other material to flesh out or extend this tale that drags it down for me.  New Orleans is always a great setting for supernatural events, especially ones that involve pre-Civil War era plantations. The notion of the departed souls inhabiting the plants and rising up to purge evil is very well presented.  There are a few other plot lines that begin to be involved in the story that starts to distract from the supernatural creepiness and make this more of a story of revenge. The ultimate resolution of the story was a bit of a let down for me as it didn't play well to the initial story line but seems to try and tie up the smaller ones instead. A fun short read, I just wish it had stayed true to the roots of the story. Sorry for the plant pun.
DiiMI More than 1 year ago
Love to garden? Like unusual plants? Think a Venus Flytrap is scary? Do you talk to your plants? Welcome to a gardener’s nightmare-come-to-life in this supernatural thriller where betrayal can be as deadly as forgiveness is uplifting. It was a not-so- Happy-Birthday for the wealthy Caitlin when she saw her husband and a beautiful woman “sharing” an intimate moment on a bathroom counter. Yeah, sexy, huh? Her anger summons to ancient spirits that are buried in the land under her massive estate, Spring House and vengeance for both old and new betrayals is sought through the supernatural power of killer vines. Her husband goes missing and no one can accept the stories that are told, but could this be the answer to where others have disappeared to? What lies beneath Spring House and when will death strike again? Is death the legacy that will remain long after everyone is gone? Will Caitlin become its next victim, should it control her, too or will she come to terms with the truth and move on, leaving Spring House to those who can better understand its heritage? Only the tenacity of two innocent bystanders can unearth the past. The Vines by Christopher Rice is a trip into the world of myth and legends, vengeance and history. Told with vividly descriptive scenes, one wonders how a land so beautiful can harbor such darkness. The emotional prints left by great characterization add to the atmosphere and brings this dark tale to life. Was I hooked from the start? Did I feel an emotional reaction to this tale? Yes and yes. Amazing what a woman scorned can do, isn’t it?
celticmaggie More than 1 year ago
Well, it has been a long time since I read such a wild ghost story. I took awhile to get started reading this story. The more I read the more I liked it. I have never been to New Orleans-bucket list. I do believe in ghosts and other paranormal occurances I was torn apart with the people in this book. It got a little too busy for me in the end. I would recommend this book for readers who like hard core paranormal stories..