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The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice
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The Vampire Armand (1998)

by Anne Rice

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I grow weary of La Rice. It's all the same now and way too talky. She's getting preachy as well. Too much of her personal religion is showing through. A Christian vampire -- yeah, right. ( )
  AliceAnna | Oct 23, 2014 |
It is Armand’s turn to recount his history to David to be recorded for posterity

If Lestat and Louis’s books are digitised, he could always just copy and paste the relevant sections.

I am not a fan of this book, there’s very little about if I find even remotely enjoyable and the few steps forwards it takes are so overwhelmed with problems as to make whatever progress it made completely irrelevant. This book was not a fun read, it was a boring read and, more than anything else, it was an unnecessary read

Which underpins the main problem with this book – it’s unnecessary in many ways. Firstly, The Vampire Chronicles is already a grossly over written series with a truly unnecessary amount of back story for the tiny crumbs of actual plot and present day happenings we have been given. I know more about Louis than I needed to, but at least Interview with a Vampire existed to introduce the world. I know every last teeny tiny detail about Lestat, but at least he is a central figure in the plot. I know Marius’s background in painful length but at least he is, somewhat, a foundation for the other characters in a rather convoluted manner. Even Meheret dropped in for a dreadfully long story time of her history

This is a lot of unnecessary back story already for a very limited plot. It doesn’t need yet another book full of back story with no actual present day storyline; enough with this endless, long winded recitation of their pasts! Recounting of history is not a substitute for plot

But this unnecessariness is compounded by the fact that this is Armand! I know some people are big fans of Armand – but honestly I have no idea why. Armand hasn’t been relevant to the plot line since Louis left him after burning down his theatre. Armand has had no significant presence in any of the dramatic events of Akasha waking up, or Lestat playing body switching or Lestat’s appalling navel gazing theology – nor did he really start a storyline of his own in this book. Armand is completely irrelevant to current events and this book did nothing to make him relevant. Nor has he ever actually been relevant!

This is shown by this book, he was a brief stopping point in Marius’s, Louis’s and Lestat’s history – a permanent side character in all their lives. The book even lampshades it:

“How can I tell you about something that doesn’t interest me? Is it supposed to interest you? The problem is that too much has been written about my past already.”

I don't know Armand, is it supposed to interest me? Because it didn’t. And yes, every remotely interesting moment in Armand’s life had already been covered in previous books; Armand had nothing useful to add and did nothing useful or interesting outside of those moments. It is repetition with another repetitive story of being a young vampire and Armand and Marius tacked on (the basics of which we already knew). This character is irrelevant! His story is already told! His history is already known! Why are we repeating this?

For padding we have prose that sets record for purpleness even among Anne Rice’s work – and that’s already a screaming magenta – gross over-descriptiveness and yet more theological and ethical rambling. I would say there are seminary text books that contain less theological navel gazing than this vampire series, except all we really do is circle the same, few, narrow abouts about good, evil and aesthetic over and over and over again, from book to book, every vampire has the same tired theological moping over interminable pages of pseudo-philosophical claptrap. At the end, the plot line is running so thin that we actually have a chapter of just describing the other vampires; because we really need Armand to sum up Louis, Lestat, Marius et al?

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1 vote FangsfortheFantasy | Sep 14, 2014 |
I'm completely unable to like this book. I just can't. I only read it because I'm a fan of Anne Rice's Vampires' series. I was never really Armand's fan and this book only made me hate him even more. I even tried to see the story through his and Marius' point of view, but no matter how beautiful may be the story of a mature man trapped in a angel-like boy, the constant and exhaustive repetition of this fact is simply annoying. Armand himself thinks he is too much of an adult, but during the WHOLE BOOK his acts contradict his thoughts. And there are too many things that Armand does that you just can't understand and not even his moments of supposedly "insanity" explain, unlike what happens with Lestat.

The little flashback scenes of the red-haired baby-vampire were only enough to increase my hatred towards this childish character, that did nothing more than cry for his master during more than half of the book (so that he would abandon him for no plausible reason). The only thing that made me want to finish reading this book was nearly the ending, when he finally realizes his own mistakes.

Absolutely awful. I'd even read VIOLIN again, but won't ever want to look at this book ever again. ( )
  aryadeschain | Aug 26, 2014 |
I'm not sure if it's because of the recent chaos going on in my life or if this book really wasn't that great... It bored me. It couldn't hold my attention at all. This book took me longer to read than any of the rest of the series has.

I did like some of the imagery in this book, but at points there was so much imagery I forgot what the plotline was in the time it took me to read the descriptive paragraphs... ( )
  KRaySaulis | Aug 13, 2014 |
After a not-so-impressive (to me) story of Memnoch the Devil, Rice has drawn me back in with Armand telling his story. He goes back to when he first met Marius, his time as a coven leader, the Theater of the Vampires, all the way to modern times when he saw the Veil.

A definite good read! ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
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Epigraph
Jesus, speaking to Mary Magdalene:

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not;
for I am not yet ascended to my Father:
but go to my brethren, and say unto them,
I ascend unto my Father, and your Father;
and to my God, and your God.

The Gospel According to St. John 20:17
Dedication
For

Brandy Edwards,

Brain Robertson

and

Christopher and Michele Rice
First words
They said a child had died in the attic.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
From the back:

Armand until now has played a small role in the Vampire Chronicles, Here he assumes center stage, relating his five hundred years of life to fledgling vampire David Talbot, who plays amanuensis to Armand as he did to Lestat...It's not just the epic plot by Rice's voluptuary worldview that's the main attraction...

The story tells how Armand eventually loses his religion and becomes 'the vagabond angel child of Satan," living under the Paris cemeteries and founding the Grand Guignol-ish Theatre des Vampires.

In the 20th Century, a rehabilitated Armand regains his faith but falls in love with two children who saved his life.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345434803, Mass Market Paperback)

In The Vampire Armand, Anne Rice returns to her indomitable Vampire Chronicles and recaptures the gothic horror and delight she first explored in her classic tale Interview with the Vampire (in which Armand, played by Antonio Banderas in the film version, made his first appearance as director of the Théâtre des Vampires).

The story begins in the aftermath of Memnoch the Devil. Vampires from all over the globe have gathered around Lestat, who lies prostrate on the floor of a cathedral. Dead? In a coma? As Armand reflects on Lestat's condition, he is drawn by David Talbot to tell the story of his own life. The narrative abruptly rushes back to 15th-century Constantinople, and the Armand of the present recounts the fragmented memories of his childhood abduction from Kiev. Eventually, he is sold to a Venetian artist (and vampire), Marius. Rice revels in descriptions of the sensual relationship between the young and still-mortal Armand and his vampiric mentor. But when Armand is finally transformed, the tone of the book dramatically shifts. Raw and sexually explicit scenes are displaced by Armand's introspective quest for a union of his Russian Orthodox childhood, his hedonistic life with Marius, and his newly acquired immortality. These final chapters remind one of the archetypal significance of Rice's vampires; at their best, Armand, Lestat, and Marius offer keen insights into the most human of concerns.

The Vampire Armand is richly intertextual; readers will relish the retelling of critical events from Lestat and Louis's narratives. Nevertheless, the novel is very much Armand's own tragic tale. Rice deftly integrates the necessary back-story for new readers to enter her epic series, and the introduction of a few new voices adds a fresh perspective--and the promise of provocative future installments. --Patrick O'Kelley

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:22:02 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

The vampire's story, from his boyhood in Kiev, his enslavement to a vampire masquerading as a Venetian painter, and his dedication to his two mortal children.

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