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Blood and Gold (2001)
by Anne Rice
Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345409329, Mass Market Paperback)Time heals all wounds, unless, of course, you're a vampire. Cuts may heal, burns vanish, limbs reattach, but for the "blood god," the wounds of the heart sometimes stay open and raw for centuries. So it is for Marius, Anne Rice's oft-mentioned and beloved scholar. We've heard parts of his tale in past volumes of the Vampire Chronicles, but never so completely and never from his own lips. In Blood and Gold, Rice mostly (but not entirely) avoids the danger of treading worn ground as she fills out the life and character of Marius the Lonely, the Disenchanted, the Heartsick--a 2,000-year-old vampire "with all the conviction of a mortal man."
Plucked from his beloved Rome in the prime of his life and forced into solitude as keeper of the vampire queen and king, Marius has never forgiven the injustice of his mortal death. Thousands of years later, he still seethes over his losses. Immortality for Marius is both a blessing and a curse--he bears "witness to all splendid and beautiful things human," yet is unable to engage in relationships for fear of revealing his burden.
New readers to the Chronicles may wish for a more fleshed-out, less introspective hero, but Rice's legions of devoted fans will recognize Blood and Gold for what it is: a love song to Marius the Wanderer, whose story reveals the complexities and limitations of eternal existence. --Daphne Durham
(retrieved from Amazon Sun, 10 Oct 2010 10:23:07 -0400)
From the Publisher: "Rice Writes With Her Usual Erotic And Historically Evocative Flair."-People. Once a proud Senator in Imperial Rome, Marius is kidnapped and forced into that dark realm of blood, where he is made a protector of the Queen and King of the vampires-in whom the core of the supernatural race resides. Through his eyes we see the fall of pagan Rome to the Emperor Constantine, the horrific sack of the Eternal City at the hands of the Visigoths, and the vile aftermath of the Black Death. Ultimately restored by the beauty of the Renaissance, Marius becomes a painter, living dangerously yet happily among mortals, and giving his heart to the great master Botticelli, to the bewitching courtesan Bianca, and to the mysterious young apprentice Armand. But it is in the present day, deep in the jungle, when Marius will meet his fate seeking justice from the oldest vampires in the world.
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