The Vampire Lestat (Vampire Chronicles Series #2)

The Vampire Lestat (Vampire Chronicles Series #2)

by Anne Rice


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345419644
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/28/1997
Series: The Vampire Chronicles Series , #2
Pages: 512
Sales rank: 494,120
Product dimensions: 5.46(w) x 8.27(h) x 1.02(d)

About the Author

Anne Rice is the author of twenty-nine books. She lives in Rancho Mirage, California.


Rancho Mirage, California

Date of Birth:

October 4, 1941

Place of Birth:

Rancho Mirage, California


B.A., San Francisco State University, 1964; M.A., 1971

Read an Excerpt

IN THE WINTER OF MY TWENTY-FIRST YEAR, I WENT out alone on horseback to kill a pack of wolves.

This was on my father's land in the Auvergne in France, and these were the last decades before the French Revolution.

It was the worst winter that I could remember, and the wolves were stealing the sheep from our peasants and even running at night through the streets of the village.

These were bitter years for me. My father was the Marquis, and I was the seventh son and the youngest of the three who had lived to manhood. I had no claim to the tile or the land, and no prospects. Even in a rich family, it might have been that way for a younger boy, but our wealth had been used up long ago. My eldest brother, Augustin, who was the rightful heir to all we possessed, had spent his wife's small dowry as soon as he married her.

My father's castle, his estate, and the village nearby were my entire universe. And I'd been born restless—the dreamer, the angry one, the complainer. I wouldn't sit by the fire and talk of old wars and the days of the Sun King. History had no meaning for me.

But in this dim and old fashioned world, I had become the hunter. I brought in the pheasant, the venison, and the trout from the mountain streams—whatever was needed and could be got—to feed the family. It had become my life by this time—and one I shared with no one else—and it was a very good thing that I'd taken it up, because there were years when we might have actually starved to death.

Of course this was a noble occupation, hunting one's ancestral lands, and we alone had the right to do it. The richest of the bourgeois couldn't lift his gun in my forests. But then again he didn't have to lift his gun. He had money.

Two times in my life I'd tried to escape this life, only to be brought back with my wings broken. But I'll tell more on that later.

Right now I'm thinking about the now all over those mountains and the wolves that were frightening the villagers and stealing my sheep. And I'm thinking of the old saying in France in those days, that if you lived in the province of Auvergne you could get no farther from Paris.

Understand that since I was the lord and the only lord anymore who could sit a horse and fire a gun, it was natural that the villagers would come to me, complaining about the wolves and expecting me to hunt them. It was my duty.

I wasn't the least afraid of the wolves either. Never in my life had I seen or heard of a wolf attacking a man. And I would have poisoned them, if I could, but meat was simply too scarce to lace with poison.

So early on a very cold morning in January, I armed myself to kill the wolves one by one. I had three flintlock guns and an excellent flintlock rifle, and these I took with me as well as my muskets and my father's sword. But just before leaving the castle, I added to this little arsenal one or two ancient weapons that I'd never bothered with before.

Our castle was full of old armor. My ancestors had fought in countless noble wars since the times of the Crusades with St. Louis. And hung on the walls above all this clattering junk were a good many lances, battleaxes, flails, and maces.

It was a very large mace—that is, a spiked club—that I took with me that morning, and also a good-sized flail: an iron ball attached to a chain that could be swung with immense force at an attacker.

Now remember this was the eighteenth century, the time when white-wigged Parisians tiptoed around in high-heeled satin slippers, pinched snuff, and dabbed at their noses with embroidered handkerchiefs.

And here I was going out to hunt in rawhide boots and buckskin coat, with these ancient weapons tied to the saddle, and my two biggest mastiffs beside me in their spiked collars.

That was my life. And it might as well have been lived in the Middle Ages. And I knew enough of the fancy-dressed travelers on the post road to feel it rather keenly. The nobles in the capital called us country lords "harecatchers." Of course we could sneer at them and call them lackeys to the king and queen. Our castle had stood for a thousand years, and not even the great Cardinal Richelieu in his war on our kind had managed to pull down our ancient towers. But as I said before, I didn't pay much attention to history.

I was unhappy and ferocious as I rode up the mountain.

I wanted a good battle with the wolves. There were five in the pack according to the villagers, and I had my guns and two dogs with jaws so strong they could snap a wolf's spine in an instant.

Well, I rode for an hour up the slopes. Then I came into a small valley I knew well enough that no snowfall could disguise it. And as I started across the broad empty field towards the barren wood, I heard the first howling.

Within seconds there had come another howling and then another, and now the chorus was in such harmony that I couldn't tell the number of the pack, only that they had seen me and were signaling to each other to come together, which was just what I had hoped they would do.

I don't think I felt the slightest fear then. But I felt something, and it caused the hair to rise on the backs of my arms. The countryside for all its vastness seemed empty. I readied my guns. I ordered my dogs to stop their growling and follow me, and some vague thought came to me that I had better get out of the open field and into the woods and hurry.

My dogs gave their deep baying alarm. I glanced over my shoulder and saw the wolves hundreds of yards behind me and streaking straight towards me over the snow. Three giant gray wolves they were, coming on in a line.

I broke into a run for the forest.

It seemed I would make it easily before the three reached me, but wolves are extremely clever animals, and as I rode hard for the trees I saw the rest of the pack, some five full-grown animals, coming out ahead of me to my left. It was an ambush, and I could never make the forest in time. And the pack was eight wolves, not five as the villagers had told me.

Even then I didn't have sense enough to be afraid. I didn't ponder the obvious fact that these animals were starving or they'd never come near the village. Their natural reticence with men was completely gone.

I got ready for battle. I stuck the flail in my belt, and with the rifle I took aim. I brought down a big male yards away from me and had time to reload as my dogs and the pack attacked each other.

Table of Contents

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The Vampire Lestat (Vampire Chronicles Series #2) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 469 reviews.
E_Bennet More than 1 year ago
I highly recommend this series. I have read the first four novels (Interview, Lestat, Queen, and Body Thief). While "Interview" may not thrill the reader as much as future novels, once you delve into "The Vampire Lestat", you'll be hooked! Of the first four, "The Vampire Lestat" is my favorite. Every word is another heartbeat shared with Lestat. Rice creates a world and a creature so real, I swear one day Lestat will appear in the room while I'm reading. Additionally, in comparison to the "Twilight" series, you'll find Rice's Vampire Chronicles to be written at a more advanced level, for a mature audience.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The story starts off a little slow, but picks up after Lestat starts telling his story. Before he was a vampire, he lived in a castle with his family in an area in France near Paris. Before he went to Paris, he hunted down 8 wolves that were killing sheep. It cost him his horse, his 2 beloved Mastiffs, and it nearly cost him his life. Then, a few months after he moved to Paris with his best friend Nick, a 700 year old vampire, who had never made a vampire before, named Magnus turns him into a vampire against Lestat's will. From there on out there are just too many adventures to go into detail about, but he eventually meets up with Louis and Claudia. This is an excellent book. I reccomend this book for anyone over the age of 13.
David_Bremmerton More than 1 year ago
I am a huge fan of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles and The Vampire Lestat is my favorite of the series by far. Wherein the hero of Interview with the Vampire (Louis) is a bit on the "poor me" side, here anti-hero Lestat is a classic narcassist with overflowing ego that fully captures the reader's imagination and attention. Awakened in modern day New Orleans, Lestat goes on a quest to become a famous rock star - all the while relating the tale of his upbringing as a young noble in France and his eventual turn into a vampire. One of the best vampire books I've ever read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
They don't get much better than this. A rockstar vampire. This is one of my all time favorite books and I hope it becomes that for you too. Very interesting and exciting read. The movie Queen of the Damned combined this book and the next book, of the same name, and very much sucked compared to the two.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lestat is my favorite character so I really enjoyed reading about his backstory. In my opinion it's the best one in the series. I recommened this book to anyone who likes vampire books.
Jillsy More than 1 year ago
if you love lestat, then hearing his story will capitavate you. i 100% fell in love with him, for all of his flaws and all of his good qualities.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book mainly because i love Lestat. This was the first book in the series that i read. DO NOT DO THAT, START FROM BOOK 1. I fell in love with it anyway. I liked some of the actors in Queen of the Damned but that movie was one of the worst book recreations ever. Always read the book before you see the movie. READ THIS BOOK!!!
kelkel77 More than 1 year ago
Not as good as the first by far, but worth it. I continued on with the rest of the Chronicles and insist this one would make you loss out on the rest if skipped. A must read as crazy fiction goes. And good to know if you want to stop loathing Lestat.
Rynny More than 1 year ago
From the very first book my fav person was Lestat! This book is one of my favs of all time! The characters seem so real. When I was reading it, I felt like I was in another world!
emanate28 on LibraryThing 3 months ago
Definitely a fun read, although without the angst & depth of feeling of the first book, Interview with the Vampire.
leodione on LibraryThing 3 months ago
I fell in love with a character for the first time here at 12yrs.
vampyredhead on LibraryThing 3 months ago
The 2nd book in the vampire chronicals. Not as good as the first, but I'm bias. Louis is my favorite. This is still an amazing book. It touches your soul. Anne Rice proves again that no one writes about vampires like she does. It's an epic story that will live forever.
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I absolutely love Anne Rice Novels!!!!
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Mistress_Nyte More than 1 year ago
This second book of the Vampire Chronicles is by far superior to Interview. Each character that touches Lestat's life is beautifully fleshed out, and made as real as Lestat himself. It's wonderful to have this book turn your feelings for a character completely around, because in Interview, Lestat is made out to be such the bad guy, or at least someone who is not very nice. This story turns it around, and you learn who Lestat is, and why he did what he did to Louis in Interview. I can only strive to someday have a book written that is as wonderfully descriptive and full of every emotion possible as Anne Rice did with this book.
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I love this book. Plain and simple. I frequintly give copies of it as gifts. Highly recomended
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