Interview with the writer: Anne Rice talks Prince Lestat And The Realms Of Atlantis…
It’s been 40 years since Louis first gave a reporter the exclusive of several lifetimes. Since then, bestselling author Anne Rice has turned her attention to Lestat, the iconic antihero of that interview, time and time again. Now, with new instalment Prince Lestat And The Realms Of Atlantis hitting shelves this month, it’s time to draw blood from this particular vampire again.
“This new novel flows directly from Prince Lestat,” Rice explains. “We find he is now the acknowledged Prince of the Vampires. He’s trying to transform from being a rebel to a responsible ruler when he is confronted by a new and mysterious group of beings.” The beings in question are linked to the legend of Atlantis; they are an all-powerful force for Lestat and his vampire legion to tackle.
“I’d been working on a novel about the lost kingdom of Atlantis for a long time,” Rice continues. “The myth has always haunted me, but the novel was not coming together. Then it occurred to me to connect my vision of ancient Atlantis with the vampires. It proved so powerful a mix for me that the novel poured out like lava.”
This new instalment is the second to be released following Rice’s hiatus from The Vampire Chronicles. Blood Canticle in 2003 was planned to be the last one in the series, but after 11 years of “freedom”, Rice felt compelled to continue Lestat’s story again.
“I thought of new and positive stories with Lestat,” she reveals. “He was no longer associated only with pain and despair. I began to see a way for Lestat to love again, and for him to respond to the young vampires all around him.”
And what of the future of The Vampire Chronicles? “Lestat is alive to me; he’s real in a way no other character I ever wrote about is real,” Rice explains. “I don’t think I will ever stop writing about Lestat again.”
Prince Lestat And The Realms Of Atlantis is published by Chatto & Windus on 29 November.
Queen of the Damned: Vampire Chronicles author Anne Rice.