My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - on and off over 15 days
Pages - 1207
Publisher - Penguin Books
Blurb from Goodreads
Demonstrating once again her gift for spellbinding storytelling, Anne Rice makes real a family of witches-a family given to poetry and incest, to murder and philosophy, a family that is itself haunted by a powerful, dangerous and seductive being."
Rowan Mayfair was kept from her immediate family from birth, to save her from the family legacy and curse. Events take place that will bring Rowan home,the history of the witches and its ghost are about to come to a head and something new is coming along.
Rowan is a fabulous young doctor, she saves the life of Michael in a chance meeting that will change their lives forever. Michael is suffering from visions and his hands are picking up vibes and readings from anything he touches. He needs to figure out what it all means before going crazy. Rowan is desperate to meet her family, despite making a promise to the woman who raised her that she would never return. Together Rowan and Michael try to unravel the mystery of the Mayfair family and what it means for them and their relationship.
The book covers the past and present, the history of the family ghost and all of the Mayfair witches to date. It gives some insight into Lasher, the family ghost, although not in depth as this will follow in the second book.
The book covers secrets, murder, sex, incest, magic, history, lies and deception to name just a few of the themes covered within this tale. It is quite a long book standing at over 1200 pages, some of this I feel could have been trimmed off and not have affected the overall tale. It has mystical and magical happenings, sex is a strong theme throughout which may make some readers feel uncomfortable. For me, this is a reread, I read this as a teenager and loved it. I still liked it as an adult however, after having devoured so many books I find myself much more critical and clearly not as enamored with the tale as I had been as a teen. It is a great book, opening up a new world with ghosts (or demons if thats your preferred term for Lasher) and witches that spills over into our world.
This is the first in a trilogy, as I have said I have read it before and will track the others down, they are somewhere in my many book shelves. Despite the time line jumping around and there being quite a few characters, the story is quite easy to follow and Anne Rice has created a world that many will love. Certainly worth a read if you like mystical type tales laced with sex and family tragedy and secrets, 3/5 for me this time.