Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
especially welcome to extensive readers

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Anne Rice-a-roni

Well,the new Anne Rice book,Christ the Lord,is out and about-will it give Anne the literary respect she craves or be the book equalivent of Passion of the Christ(Anne was written up in EW and calls Mel Gibson "a genius but he's not a biblical scholar"....ok,a genius at making a snuff film a boxoffice bonanza,that I'll buy). I have read parts of this book with Little Sister-we read aloud to each other at
certain points-and I have to tell you,I'm not impressed.

Ok,some background-I was a fan of Anne's Tales of the Vampires series(up to a point) and the last good book I read by her was The Witching Hour,sort of a Gothic Gone With The Wind. When I first started working at the bookstore,one of the staff members was into Anne Rice and we shared a ARC of Violin(which was rare to have-Advance Copies of her work were as scare as hen's teeth for a time)and we both agreed it was horrible. Convoluted plot twists with heavy doses of her autobiographical angst glopped in.

Anne's been getting a rep for the wacky for some time now,her last big whoop was her war with Amazon reader reviews(which I didn't read but her response was quite over the top and then some.). The thing that bothers me about her the most is how she seems to use her personal woes as grist for the publicity mill. I do feel bad for her past and present troubles but she has constantly recycled her own emo themes and truly believes her own hype-she has Oprah Syndrome,in other words.

Anyway,my impression of the book is similar to the one I hold of Spielberg's Schindler's List: the "Please Take Me Seriously" project. Both,in technical terms,are done very well and were well researched(owning 200 bibles helps,I guess,for Anne)but to me,I can hear a voice saying"I'm not just an entertainer-I'm An Artist! Look at how Artistic I am!" Don't get me wrong,I'm all for folks trying new things but sincerity is hard to fake.

Christ the Lord:Out of Egypt is about a year in the life of Jesus,when he was seven years old and his family decided it was safe to move back home,now that Herod had other things to do besides hunt the Messiah down. Yes,chapter one does have Jesus accidentally knock off a bully and then bring him back to life.

The bully then starts beating up on him again while shouting"Son of David!" over and over again-that part,I don't buy. I can see some one getting killed and being pissed off when the guy responsible resurrects him but calling him"Son of David"? Granted,these are biblical times but surely there are better insults than that-"Son of a Jackal" for one.

The whole book seems to be about the journey home-Anne really did her homework and keeps finding not-so-subtle ways to show it off-"here is where the women make the cloth" kind of stuff. Also,there's a section where Young Jesus is lying in the grass and getting very connected by watching the ants and I'm going"What is this,Thoreau 101?" Heck,I've read Thoreau and he struck me as pretty off the beam,too.

Like I said,I've only read some,not the whole book. So,while I'm not ready to rejoin the AR bandwagon,the best I can say is if you're curious about the book but not sure about spending $25.95,check it out of the library or borrow it from a friend. That way,when Anne comes out with the next book in the series(yep,it's gonna be another series),you'll know then whether you want to give the lady your do-re-mi.


Jake McCafferty said...

Eh, I never got into Anne Rice anyway. Plus, seeing her around New Orleans, she was just weird. It seems she hasn't changed much since I left.

On a brighter note, her son is a homo. :-)

lady t said...

He's also a writer but I haven't read any of his books(he's gotten decent reviews).

IF you think Anne Rice looked strange then,you should see her now-the latest pic of her in EW looks like the world's oldest First Communion recipant:)