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Merrick by Anne Rice
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At Louis’ request David gets back in touch with Merrick Mayfair, a powerful witch and member of the Talamasca. He has known her since she joined the order as a child and knows her long, powerful and often frightening history.

But that history may be why she can do what Louis needs and call on Claudia’s ghost to confirm for him whether the child vampire has reached a peaceful afterlife or suffers as a ghost. And David’s connection to Merrick may be why she’d want to do it.

Though Merrick may be playing her own game

So, Louis wants to get in touch with Claudia’s ghost because the angst monster needs fuel for his eternal mope. To do this he contacts David who in turn calls on a contact he has in the Talamasca, Merrick.

And then tells us her life story in excruciating detail

I think it’s a good thing vampires don’t eat, because every time they ordered a pizza they’d have to pause to have an epic monologue on the delivery boy’s history. I’d actually be wary of working with these vampires simply because if you do anything for them they demand a full biography – which they then apparently put into print and share with the world. It’s one of the unknown vampire afflictions – can’t go out in the sunlight, blood diet and compulsive biography writing. Honestly, I do not even remotely understand the need to tell extremely long, irrelevant back stories to characters that we know nothing about and have little, or no, reason to care about.

I need an aside on the Talamasca – since I’ve previously called them the Talastalkers. Their motto is “We watch and we’re always there.” I presume this is because “We Know Where you Live and Where Your Children Go to School” and “We’re In The House!” were both already taken.

When I first saw that David was the narrator of this I celebrated. For a brief, deeply frightening moment, I thought Louis was going to be the POV and we would have lots of whining. At least David doesn’t whine… oh how wrong I was. No, because now David has thrown his hat in the ring – he too will compete for the title of whiniest one of all!

Between the moping, excessive descriptions and unnecessary art references (honestly, I do not understand authors who try to shoe-horn in these references to show us how knowledgeable they are) there was a surprising lack of philosophising to a degree. But it does seem that everything Lestat learned and we endured during Memnoch the Devil has been forgotten. There was even one interesting philosophical point of Louis refusing to upgrade his power level, even if he would then not have to kill so often, because that way he is capable of suicide, capable of dying which inherently makes him more human than, say, Lestat or David who wouldn’t know how to kill themselves even if they tried.

Read More ( )
  FangsfortheFantasy | Sep 14, 2014 |
I related a lot to Merrick and David's relationship. I really enjoyed this book, though not as much as I've enjoyed some of her others. ( )
  KRaySaulis | Aug 13, 2014 |
Finally the Mayfair family and the vampires are combined and brought together. While reading of the Mayfair witches isn't necessary to read and understand this book, that series is so good, why wouldn't you?

This is a tale of ghosts, vampiric death, spirits, voodoo, and love. Good fun! ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
Finally the Mayfair family and the vampires are combined and brought together. While reading of the Mayfair witches isn't necessary to read and understand this book, that series is so good, why wouldn't you?

This is a tale of ghosts, vampiric death, spirits, voodoo, and love. Good fun! ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
I really enjoyed Merrick. It's part of the Vampire Chronicles series and it focuses on the history between David Talbot and a witch named Merrick. The history is all background story of course in the fashion that Anne Rice often does in her books, but the main plot of the story is that Louis wants to contact Claudia's ghost and David gets in touch with the witch Merrick to request that she use her magic to do this. Personally I found the background story more interesting than the actual main plot. This book does involve the Mayfair witches so if you have any interest in reading the trilogy about the Mayfair witches, you should probably read them before you read this book. ( )
  Kythe42 | Jul 10, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Anne Riceprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Malcolm, GraemeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Stan Rice and Christopher Rice and Nancy Rice Diamond
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My name is David Talbot.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345422406, Mass Market Paperback)

Just when you thought it was safe for a bloodsucker to go out in the dark in New Orleans, along comes Merrick Mayfair, a sultry, hard-drinking octoroon beauty whose voodoo can turn the toughest vampire into a marionette dancing to her merry, scary tune. In Merrick, Anne Rice brings back three of her most wildly popular characters--the vampires Lestat and Louis and the dead vampire child Claudia--and introduces them to the world of her Mayfair Witches book series.

It is Louis who brings about the collision of the fang and voodoo universes. Louis made Claudia a vampire in Rice's classic Interview with the Vampire, in which she was destroyed, and now he's obsessed with raising her ghost to make amends and seek guidance from the beyond. (Claudia physically resembles Rice's young daughter who died of a blood-related illness. Rice nearly died of a diabetic coma in 1998, and writing Merrick turned her excruciating recovery into an exhilarating burst of creativity).

Vampire David Talbot lobbies Merrick to call Claudia's spirit and slake Louis's guilt, but Talbot winds up in the grip of an obsession with the witch. You see, Talbot, unlike most vampires, lived 70 years as a human, so his sexual response to humans is still as strong as his blood thirst. Merrick can cast spells to make men crave her, and Talbot is tormented. After she reads his palm, he muses, "I wanted to take her in my arms, not to feed from her, no, not harm her, only kiss her, only sink my fangs a very little, only taste her blood and her secrets, but this was dreadful and I wouldn't let it go on."

The secrets of Merrick are dark and sensuous, but the book is a romp animated by Rice's feeling of coming back to life through the magic of a literary outpouring. The narrative flashes back to the past, to an Indiana Jones-ish adventure in a Guatemalan cave, and to scenes from many other Rice novels. It may be helpful to read Merrick with the Rice-approved guidebooks The Vampire Companion and The Witches' Companion at hand.

After many books, Rice's grand Vampire Chronicles tale was in peril of getting long in the tooth. Merrick Mayfair's magic represents an infusion of fresh blood. --Tim Appelo

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:02:50 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

David Talbot, an adventurer and near-mortal vampire, narrates the saga of Merrick, a descendant of the Mayfair witches, from whom she inherits her magical gifts, and of a mixed African and French background that is steeped in traditions and lore of voodoo.… (more)

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