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Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles) by Anne…
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Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles) (original 2001; edition 2002)

by Anne Rice

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4,470341,984 (3.63)23
Out of the pages of the Vampire Chronicles steps the golden-haired Marius, true Child of the Millenia, once mentor to the Vampire Lestat, always and forever the conscientious slayer of the evildoer, and now ready to reveal the secrets of his two-thousand-year-long existence in his own intense yet intimate voice. Born in Imperial Rome, imprisoned and made a "blood god" by the ancient Druids, Marius is the baffled yet powerful protector of Akasha and Enkil, Queen and King of the vampires, in whom the core of the race resides. We follow him through his tragic loss of the vampire Pandora, his lover and fledgling creation. Through him we see the fall of pagan Rome to the Christendom of Constantine, and the sack of the Eternal City by the Visigoths. We see him sailing to the glittering city of Constantinople. Worlds within worlds unfold as Marius, surviving the Dark Ages and the Black Death, emerges in the midst of the Italian Renaissance to create magnificent paintings and a vampire—the boy Armand. Moving from Florence, Venice, Dresden, Paris, and the English castle of the secret and scholarly order of the Talamasca, the novel reaches its dramatic finale in a jungle paradise where the oldest of the vampires reigns supreme.… (more)
Member:cj5402
Title:Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles)
Authors:Anne Rice
Info:Ballantine Books (2002), Edition: 1St Edition, Mass Market Paperback, 576 pages
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Blood and Gold by Anne Rice (2001)

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A few years ago I got back into reading Anne Rice after having stopped with THE MUMMY a couple of decades ago. Working my way through THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES and THE MAYFAIR WITCHES, I have finally arrived at BLOOD AND GOLD, which was written in 2000. Rice’s most enduring and popular character will always be Lestat, the young 18th Century French nobleman turned blood drinker whom she introduced in INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE. But after giving her readers a half dozen books with their favorite at the center of the action, she began expanding her literary vampire universe by putting out books telling the stories of secondary characters such as Armand, Vittorio, and Pandora. In BLOOD AND GOLD, Rice tells the story of Marius, the Roman aristocrat turned creature of the night, and keeper of Those Who Must Be Kept.

Or, retelling the story, as much of Marius’s saga, from his origin as a vampire in Druid worshiping ancient Britain, his becoming the keeper of Akasha and Enkil, the original vampires, his time in Venice where he meets and becomes infatuated with the boy, Amadeo, to Akasha’s awakening in modern times have been covered in other books. BLOOD AND GOLD seeks to fill in the blank spots from other narratives, and tell things from Marius’ point of view. The book is framed by one of Rice’s tried and true tropes, where one character sits with another, and tells a tale. The story begins with the awakening of Thorne, a vampire Viking (that’s a book right there) who has slumbered under the ice for many centuries. Thorne has been awakened by the events of THE QUEEN OF THE DAMNED, and goes looking for Maheret, his maker, and one of the most ancient of vampires. Thorne meets Marius instead, who then proceeds for 500 pages to tell Thorne his story. At the end, Thorne does meet his maker, and some old conflicts are resolved. But this is Marius’ book, and his story encompasses ancient Rome and its fall to Barbarians, the newly rising Constantinople, Renaissance Venice, and the city of Dresden in Saxony in the 1600s. There are side trips to medieval Paris, and the England of Henry the VIII, where we get a look at the early Talesmasca. The great part of the book covers Marius’ relationships with Pandora, a young woman he falls in love with in Roman times and whom he makes into a vampire; Amadeo (later known as Armand), a beautiful boy he falls in love with in Venice, and makes into a vampire; and Bianca, a beautiful woman of Venice, whom Marius falls in love with and makes into a vampire when he is in desperate need of aide after running afoul of other blood drinkers. The fates of these relationships and why they come to such a state is the heart of the story. Along the way there are encounters with Mael, Avicus, Eudoxia, Zenobia, and Santino, other vampires who are friends, foes, and frenemies at different times. The great artist Botticelli makes an appearance, and there is a cameo by Daniel, the young man introduced in the first chapter of INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE, now a blood drinker himself, which in a small way ties everything back to the beginning.

Compared to some other books by Rice, I found BLOOD AND GOLD to be an easy read, the author seems to have forsaken her rampant use of adjectives that plagued other books, nor was there the tendency to gush over architecture and art in the extreme. Rice’s tremendous grasp of history is on full display, including a deep knowledge of fashion. Her books always create a world that feels much lived in; she always conveys a sense of place, and makes us believe that this is how people were at this point in time. The main character of Marius is well loved by some fans, not so much by others. In the early Lestat books, he is a knowing elder, with wisdom gained by centuries upon this earth. But the Marius we see in BLOOD AND GOLD is his own worst enemy by not taking threats seriously, practicing deceit with those who care for him, and foolishly overestimating himself. He comes across as being as guilty of letting his passions rule him as much as Lestat, a sin for which he often condemned the younger vampire. Then there are Marius’ relationships with young boys, and his expressed affection for them in the section set in Renaissance Venice. This comes uncomfortably close to pedophilia for some readers even though Rice makes it clear that her vampires do not have sexual relationships in the conventional way. I understand their concerns, and it is an issue with other books by her, especially in the Mayfair witches series, but what I think Rice is doing here is creating a character with a pre Christian and pagan sensability, one that he has not forsaken despite the passage of a thousand years. As I have stated in other reviews of Rice’s books, she is most definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, and those who have a problem most certainly have given up long before they would have gotten to BLOOD AND GOLD. If you are unfamiliar with Anne Rice, this book not a suitable entry point.

The finale of BLOOD AND GOLD, where some characters not seen since the end of THE QUEEN OF THE DAMNED appear, felt like THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES were coming full circle, maybe an ending point. But Rice has continued to write in the years since, crossing over her witches and vampires, and adding werewolves to the mix. She had also written about Jesus Christ, a result of her returning (for a time) to the Catholic Church. And it looks as if we’re finally about to get that long delayed TV series adaptation of CHRONICLES, let’s hope AMC doesn’t botch it. ( )
  wb4ever1 | Jun 24, 2021 |
hb
  5083mitzi | Mar 20, 2021 |
Anne Rice has stated she wants book reviewers to be required to post with their full, real name. In response, I am removing all my reviews of her novels as I am unable and unwilling to do this. I am no longer comfortable reading or reviewing her work. Thank you.
1 vote kaitlynn_g | Dec 13, 2020 |
Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles) by Anne Rice (2002) ( )
  zvati | Jan 27, 2019 |
Boring to say the least.
In this book we are told the story of Marius from his own lips as he explains it to a newly risen vampire named Thorne. His story was already captioned and a couple of the previous books.
Perhaps I liked his story better as a caption instead of in full. Instead of wise he comes off to me as very pretentious and self-righteous. His story is boring because he is always in the right about everything and everyone else is in the wrong. And at first glance this may sound like the story of Lestat however he differs from Lestat in the fact that he's not comical and bratty. Instead he is simply just always the victor in every circumstance.
Though it is beautifully written like the rest of the series, I have to say I did not enjoy this book very much and found it a rather daunting read. I am hoping that the next few books are better but as I'm heading into number 7 my hopes are not very high at this point. ( )
  SumisBooks | Sep 6, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Anne Riceprimary authorall editionscalculated
Rees, RogerNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Dedicated to my beloved husband, Stan Rice
Tilegnet min elskede mand, Stan Rice, og min elskede søster, Karen O'brien
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Hans navn var Thorne. På runernes ældgamle sprog havde det været længere ... Thornevald. Men da han blev bloddrikker var hans navn blevet ændret til Thorne. Og Thorne var han stadigvæk nu, århundreder efter, da han lå i sin hule i isen og drømte.
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Out of the pages of the Vampire Chronicles steps the golden-haired Marius, true Child of the Millenia, once mentor to the Vampire Lestat, always and forever the conscientious slayer of the evildoer, and now ready to reveal the secrets of his two-thousand-year-long existence in his own intense yet intimate voice. Born in Imperial Rome, imprisoned and made a "blood god" by the ancient Druids, Marius is the baffled yet powerful protector of Akasha and Enkil, Queen and King of the vampires, in whom the core of the race resides. We follow him through his tragic loss of the vampire Pandora, his lover and fledgling creation. Through him we see the fall of pagan Rome to the Christendom of Constantine, and the sack of the Eternal City by the Visigoths. We see him sailing to the glittering city of Constantinople. Worlds within worlds unfold as Marius, surviving the Dark Ages and the Black Death, emerges in the midst of the Italian Renaissance to create magnificent paintings and a vampire—the boy Armand. Moving from Florence, Venice, Dresden, Paris, and the English castle of the secret and scholarly order of the Talamasca, the novel reaches its dramatic finale in a jungle paradise where the oldest of the vampires reigns supreme.

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