Tag Archives: Anne Rice

In the World of Fiction: The Oldies but Goodies Are Back

 

In the World of Fiction: The Oldies but Goodies Are Back

by Amy Lignor

 

Readers, 2017 has arrived. And the one thing that rises above all the other so-called ‘trends’ that publishers and book lovers are looking forward to seeing this year is one, undeniable and exciting fact: Beloved authors will step back into the limelight.

Trends are odd. There are those of us who never assumed that the whole utopian word as well as dystopian world would hang on for this long. “The Hunger Games” brought about author after author (a lot of first-

2017, trends, Dean Koontz, oldies but goodies, Anne Rice, good reads, fiction
Image: Erin Kelly

time/debut novelists) writing about odd worlds where reality has been most definitely altered. Heroes and heroines came to the forefront who were much younger, and a lot of females cropped up with everything from blades to crossbows to fight the bad guys with. They also had high moral compasses – the need for authors, perhaps, to teach the world that battling is just fine…if done for the right reasons and in a totally different world.

That trend will continue, but the most exciting news is the fact that two authors are taking back center stage – one beginning a series that is sure to have the populace raving; and one who has begun a series by renewing a character she’s been obsessed with since 1976.

We begin with one of the masters of fiction; Dean Koontz. His series featuring the much loved “Odd Thomas” ended, and readers everywhere were highly upset. Those millions who received the Dean Koontz monthly newsletter were practically in tears when they learned that old Odd was heading out, never to return again. But now, for 2017, Dean Koontz has created a character he is so excited about that a series has already been born. What will begin with “The Silent Corner” is already being followed up with a sequel that he’s written called “The Whispering Room” – both to be published in 2017.

Even Koontz is head-over-heels about this one. Interviews have commenced and he stated (in various articles and even the amazing year end Suspense Magazine issue put out last week) that “Once in a while, a character comes so alive so quickly and with such an edge that I almost feel as if I’ve actually met this person. It often follows that if the character has such an edge, the story moves like an express train, because a character with an edge has surprises up his or her sleeve that I can’t foresee but that I’m delighted to discover in one twist after another.”

He is speaking of Jane Hawk, an FBI agent who’s on leave, but one that quickly becomes an FBI agent gone rogue. This is no child with a crossbow. Late twenties, Jane is incredibly tough and highly smart. And, unlike Odd Thomas, her stories involve no supernatural elements whatsoever. Instead, we’re talking about science and fact. Yet, of course, Koontz is still Koontz and has made sure to write a frightening tale. He will even have a third Hawk book complete before the first two are even published in 2017. Readers’ message to Koontz? Keep going! We want as many as we can get!

The other author who everyone is talking about is Anne Rice. Coming back at the end of 2016 with her well-known bloodsucker that took the world by storm decades ago (and played horribly by Tom Cruise on the screen), “Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis” was published in October. Yes, this begins a new series of books – a trilogy that will continue in 2017 that will focus on Lestat and give readers a real thrill. The old vamp will even cross over to the small screen in 2017, coming to your television very soon.

So although there will be debut authors and books that will come out of nowhere to score high in the world of fiction, it is these two authors – the oldies but goodies – who are being talked about above all else. It is a breath of fresh air to see these two names once again up on the publishing marquee…right where they belong.

Source:  Baret News

Adaptation of Anne Rice Best Seller Chronicles Critical Year in the Life of the Christ Child

 

The Young Messiah, Film Review by Kam Williams,Biblical bildungsroman, intriguing historical drama, Anne Rice, Biblical narrative of the Lord's early lifeThe Young Messiah

Film Review by Kam Williams

Adaptation of Anne Rice Best Seller Chronicles Critical Year in the Life of the Christ Child

2015 was certainly a banner year for Christian-oriented fare, with over 30 faith-based films being released in theaters. 2016 appears to be following suit, with Risen, The Lady in the Van and The Witch among the offerings already featuring heavy religious overtones.

Directed by Cyrus Nowrasteh (The Stoning of Soraya M.), The Young Messiah is a  chronicling critical events which transpired during a momentous year in the life of the Christ child (Adam Greaves-Neal). The intriguing historical drama was adapted from “Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt,” a best seller by the legendary Anne Rice, the Grand Dame of Gothic Fiction.

That debut foray into Christian-themed literature represented a big departure for Rice who nevertheless earned Beliefnet’s 2005 Book of the Year for her opus based on the Gospels as well as on theological scholarship.  And now Nowrasteh has brought a version of the story to the big screen certain to capture the imagination of the target churchgoing demographic.

After all, the New Testament reveals precious little about Jesus’ formative years, and this ambitious project manages to flesh them out ever so convincingly. As the film unfolds, we find Him living in Alexandria and behaving like your typical 7 year-old while His parents, Mary (Sara Lazzaro) and Joseph (Vincent Walsh), struggle with how to go about explaining the concept of God to His own Son.

We also learn that they have been living in exile because of King Herod’s (Jonathan Bailey) order his soldiers to massacre all the young boys of Bethlehem. The maniacal despot was determined  to prevent the rumored Messiah from ever seizing the throne. Herod’s demise frees the family to return home, although the obsessed centurion Severus (Sean Bean) is still searching for Jesus and sees a little King of the Jews lurking behind every rock.

The Young Messiah, Film Review by Kam Williams,Biblical bildungsroman, intriguing historical drama, Anne Rice, Biblical narrative of the Lord's early life

Meanwhile, Jesus goes about inadvertently healing His sick uncle, curing a blind rabbi, and raising both a bully and a bird back from the dead. And He performs plenty of random acts of kindness, too.

But He remains desperate for an explanation of these superpowers until Mary finally ‘fesses up about everything from the Immaculate Conception to the Virgin Birth to His divine destiny. A plausible, cinematic parable presuming to fill in gaps in the Biblical narrative of the Lord’s early life.

Excellent (4 stars)

Rated PG-13 for violence and mature themes

Running time: 111 minutes

Distributor: Focus Features

Source:  Baret News

A Nice Slice of Rice

 

Anne Rice

The “Beauty’s Kingdom” Interview

with Kam Williams

A Nice Slice of Rice

 

Anne Rice’s debut novel, Interview with a Vampire, was adapted into an Oscar-nominated film
starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt. She is also the author of many other best-sellers, including the hugely 25415successful Vampire Chronicles, The Mummy or Ramses the Damned, Violin, Angel Time, and the Mayfair Witches series.

Born and raised in New Orleans, Anne now lives in Southern California. Here, she talks about her latest book, Beauty’s Kingdom, an eagerly-anticipated extension of her popular, Sleeping Beauty trilogy.

 

 

 

Kam Williams: Hi, Anne. Thanks for the interview. I’m honored to have this opportunity

Anne Rice: Thanks, Kam. 

 

KW: I’ll be mixing my questions in with some sent in by fans. I really enjoyed Beauty’s Kingdom. What inspired you to extend the Sleeping Beauty trilogy after such a long hiatus?

AR: I had more to say. Many years have passed since I wrote the original trilogy. I felt a new book could refine and deepen the vision. Also, times have changed and, with them, attitudes towards erotica. It’s accepted today in a way it was not before, and I did find that inspiring.  

 

KW: Bobby Shenker says: I read and loved the Beauty series when I discovered it in the mid-Eighties. Did the appearance of Fifty Shades of Grey have any influence on your decision to continue the series?

AR: Yes, the success of Fifty Shades indicated that people were out of the closet about their appreciation of erotica. Erotica no longer need be an underground thing. I was inspired by this new acknowledgement of the significance of erotica. 

 

KW: Harriet Pakula-Teweles asks: How do you make the writing psychological shift from Gothic fiction to Erotic fiction—or is there a lot of one in the other?

AR: For me erotic and gothic fiction have much in common. Both are imaginative realms that are talking about the meaning of life in metaphorical terms. I love that. I don’t have any problem writing in both genres.

 

KW: Director Lawrence Greenberg says: Anne, I am a huge fan. I think that I have read every one of your books. Can you speak a little bit about how your writing has been adapted to the screen and what you have learned from that process, for better or worse?

AR: I have good and bad experiences with screen adaptation. What I learned above all is that it is always a risk. However, I love film in all forms, and I think it’s worth the risk. So I keep agreeing to and encouraging adaptations. Of course, I feel those adaptations which are entirely faithful to the underlying work are the most successful. When producers and directors and screenwriters try to re-imagine and substantially change the underlying material, more often the end product fails.  

 

51HI3pxZMZLKW: Editor Lisa Loving says: Wow! OK! Dang! Anne Rice rearranged part of my mind during the years I read her novels, including the three-part Sleeping Beauty. Will… never… get… over… that! Whoa! Anne, one of the things I love the most about your writing is the way you consistently encompass wide swaths of human history. What is your favorite history book, or do you have a go-to source for your historical perspectives?

AR: I read very widely in history and consume an amazing number of biographies.  The well written biography is the best way for me to learn about a period, whether we are talking about a biography of Harriet Beecher Stowe or Elizabeth I or Peter the Great or Augustus Caesar. I read history all the time for pure pleasure often immersing myself in a character or a century that might not show up in my novels at all. Reading history for me is like eating ice cream.

 

KW: Lisa’s also curious about what made you turn to writing about the life of Jesus. What did that historical research involve? And what has been the response of your readers?

AR: Writing my two novels about Jesus involved years of research into life in the First Century, research in the Bible, research in Bible scholarship, research in ancient mythology and literature, etc.   I visited Israel twice while writing these books.  —- The reader response to both Christ the Lord books was hugely positive, but I eventually moved away from the project for theological reasons. I loved writing about the private life of Jesus, trying to re-create what daily life was like for Him as a boy in Nazareth, but when it came to tackling His public life and teachings, I found the age old theological battles about Him draining and discouraging. But I loved working in this area. I am a believer in Jesus who has no organized theology to back up that belief. I seek for Jesus outside organized religion and it quarreling churches and cults. And my two books about Jesus  are the full expression of my love for Him and faith in Him.

 

KW: Do you have any favorite “monsters” that you have never written about? Is “monster” the right word to describe vampires, witches and Lasher? Is there a real-life Lestat that you patterned the character on?

AR: My favorite monster is the vampire without doubt. He is a metaphor for the outsider in all of us, the outcast, the lonely one, the lost one. I’ll be interrogating that metaphor for the rest of my life.  

 

KW: Editor/Legist Patricia Turnier says: Without giving too much away about Beauty’s Kingdom, tell us what readers should expect from it? If it becomes a movie one day, who’d you like to direct and star in it?

AR: Beauty’s Kingdom picks up the characters twenty years after the trilogy. Beauty and her beloved husband, King Laurent, are called upon to come back to the kingdom where they met as slaves and preserve the way of erotica slavery. Beauty declares that henceforth all slavery must be voluntary and open to applicants of all classes.  The book explores, among other things, the outlook of those who volunteer to be slaves and how they love it and what they expect from their royal masters and mistresses.  —-  Right now, Beauty is being developed for cable television.

 

KW: Patricia also says: I didn’t read Interview with the Vampire but I truly loved the movie. The best movies often come from great books, and it helps when the author writes the screenplay like in this case. How did you insure that the filmmaker would do a great job adapting your novel? Were you involved with the casting? Did you spend a lot of time on the set, too?

AR: I couldn’t really insure anything. I did write the script and Neil Jordan added many things but was essentially faithful to the script and the books.  But it’s always a risk. There was no guarantee it would turn out that way.  David Geffen was the producer behind it all, and it was his desire I think for fidelity that underscored the whole effort. 

 

KW: It is amazing that you became highly successful with your first novel. I assume you encountered many naysayers prior to getting published. What kept you going and what advice do you have for aspiring authors?

AR: Writers have to have faith. They have to be stubborn.  They have to endure lots of insults, contemptuous dismissal and criticism, and they have to keep going. I always believed this. I always believed the author has to fight for her vision, her story, her characters, her “right” to be a writer and to offer something fresh and interesting in a marketplace that will always be tough. I don’t know where I got my courage. I am a scrapper. It’s in my genes.  

 

KW: What was your first job?

AR:  My first job was as a cafeteria waitress in a downtown cafeteria in New Orleans.  I worked on weekends and made 75 cents an hour.  It was hard work but I loved it.  

 

KW: Thanks again for the time, Anne, and best of luck with the book.

AR:  Thank you, Kam.

 

 

To order a copy of Beauty’s Kingdom, visit:http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0525427996/ref=nosim/thslfofire-2

Source:  Baret News Wire