Now, we all know how much I love Twilight (note sarcasm). I'm sure that if I'd read Interview with the Vampire before reading the Twilight series, I wouldn't have found myself cringing over the similarities. But the thing is, I've never much cared for the whole vampire phenomenon, and when the Interview with the Vampire movie came out I was a bit too young (in my parents' eyes) to watch it. Therefore I didn't see the movie until 2009 and didn't suck it up and read the book until just recently.
Now, as much as the movie adaptation of Interview with the Vampire made me raise my eyebrows, I have to say that I enjoyed watching that far more than I enjoyed reading this book. Was it the worst thing I've ever read? Nah. Were there things I liked about it? Sure. But none of those things was the characters, and for me that's a big problem. I've heard that if one reads more of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles books, one gets a better idea of Lestat especially...but as a stand-alone, he annoyed me, Louis frustrated me, and Claudia just weirded me out.
And then of course there are the Twilight similarities. Old vampire in handsome young man's body - check. He's whiny and questions his life as a vampire and basically hates being one - check. He even spends an extended amount of time as a "vegetarian" vampire - check. Are you seeing what I'm seeing? (That being how Stephenie Meyer so obviously modeled Edward Cullen after Louis, of course.) Shoot, Louis even has very troublesome romantic-type feelings toward Claudia, who he constantly thinks of as "a woman trapped in a child's body". I mean, you can't tell me that's not somewhat similar to what all happens between Edward and Bella!
I know, I know, I know. This is a book review for Interview with the Vampire and I need to get back on track. The fact of the matter is, considering the length of this book, nothing happened. No, seriously, there were maybe three "conflicts" throughout, and each of them took up several pages, but the rest of the novel was just Louis whining about being a vampire, whining about Lestat, whining about Claudia, whining whining whining. By the time I was halfway through I couldn't stop thinking Ughhhh I'm only halfway through!?!
The book does make you think, though. And Anne Rice's grasp on description is admirable. Not sure I'm convinced about checking out the rest of her vampire books, though. 2.5/5 stars
"'There's a simple answer to that. I don't believe I want to give simple answers,'said the vampire. 'I think I want to tell the real story...'"
"'Evil is always possible. And goodness is eternally difficult.'"
"'This refined sugar is a poison. It was like the essence of life in New Orleans, so sweet that it can be fatal, so richly enticing that all other values are forgotten...'"
"'Angels feel love, and pride...the pride of The Fall...and hatred. The strong overpowering emotions of detached persons in whom emotion and will are one.'"
"'One of its aspects, detachment with feeling, I should say, is that you can think of two things at the same time.""
"'Like all strong people, she suffered always a measure of loneliness; she was a marginal outsider, a secret infidel of a certain sort. And the balance by which she lived might be upset if she were to question her own goodness.'"
"'I'm convinced that Lestat was a person who preferred not to think or talk about his motives or beliefs, even to himself. One of those people who must act. Such a person must be pushed considerably before he will open up and confess that there is method and thought to the way he lives.'"
"'Louis, your quest is for darkness only. This sea is not your sea. The myths of men are not your myths. Men's treasures are not yours.'"
"'I've more reason now than ever to say that happiness is not what I will ever know, or will ever deserve to know. I am not so much in love with happiness.'"
"'New Orleans, though beautiful and desperately alive, was desperately fragile. There was something forever savage and primitive there, something that threatened the exotic and sophisticated life both from within and without.'"
"'New Orleans seemed at all times like a dream in the imagination of her striving populaces, a dream held intact at every second by a tenacious, though unconscious, collective will.'"
"'My memory is too clear; too sharp; things should wear at the edges, and what is unresolved should soften.'"
"'It amazes me, how in your complexity you are so profoundly simple.'"
"'Don't you see? I'm not the spirit of any age. I'm at odds with everything and always have been! I have never belonged anywhere with anyone at any time!'"
"'...you cannot have love and goodness when you do what you know to be evil, what you know to be wrong. You can only have the desperate confusion and longing and the chasing of phantom goodness in its human form.'"