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on 6 May 2017
another book from the serie of Anne Rice ...if you are into Vampire story my son assures me it is the best serie I have been getting them all 2 at a time and he still like them...the book itself is second hand but was clean and no writing in it...perfect!
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on 9 July 2014
Great product great value :)
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Anne Rice tries to meld her two most popular series in "Merrick," where the Mayfair Witches and the seductive vampires collide. Unfortunately, with a limp title character and a meandering, weird plot, "Merrick" is most noteworthy for its unrealized potential and what it could have been, if Rice had cultivated it.
David Talbot encounters his protege/semi-lover Merrick Mayfair, an octaroon witch who now works for the Talamasca. He has an odd request for her: Louis de Point du Lac, a tormented vampire, wants to call up the spirit of the child vampire Claudia, so he can be reassured of her fate. And he needs Merrick's help to do so, since she has the ability to call up and control the dead with her voodoo magic.
David reflects on his first encounters with Merrick, her trips into the jungle in search of mystery artifacts, and the malevolent spirit of her dead sister Honey in the Sunshine. Now those artifacts may help her raise up Claudia's spirit, and might give Honey's spirit a way back into the world as well. But when Claudia is brought forth to speak with Louis, what she has to say may destroy him...
"Merrick" was advertised as the spot where the Mayfair and Vampire Chronicles converged, but that's kind of misleading. Except for some mentions of Julian Mayfair, there's only a vague connection with the "white Mayfairs." It's mostly vampires and more vampires, with only the Talamasca (a sort of supernatural FBI) as a connecting point.
As always, Rice's writing is lush and brimming over with steamy New Orleans atmosphere. But she could use some editing. There are constant references to Merrick getting snockered on rum, her breasts, her clothes, David lusting after her, Louis burbling about how he loves her, and so on. And Rice seems to lose her way in the final chapters, as if she wasn't entirely sure how to wrap up what she had started.
The biggest flaw of the book is Merrick herself. She's certainly an intriguing character, a beautiful witch who wants to be a vampire, and isn't afraid to bend the men (and vampires) around her fingers to get what she wants. But she doesn't seem to have any flaws, motives, or recognizable emotions. We get no insights at all to what she's thinking. Louis is a rather ineffectual presence, and David is basically there to lust after Merrick. But Lestat's brief appearance toward the end sets the pages on fire.
While "Merrick" is overflowing with promise, hardly any of that promise is actually used. Beautifully written but poorly characterized, "Merrick" tries to cast a spell but doesn't succeed.
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on 5 June 2010
Not having read any reviews of this book it came as a splendid surprise to have some of the old characters back. David Talbot was always one of my favorites. To learn about his experience with magic and to have him introduce such a provocative and mystical witch was fascinating and quite a departure from the Rice that we know. She is no passive dabbler in mind-reading. Unlike the Mayfair Witches of First Street, the exotic Merrick is a priestess of ceremonial magic, a spirit conjurer of the highest order.

Although Rice departs from her usual vampiric adventures, delving more into Voodoo and witchcraft, she moves the story of her much beloved blood drinkers along seamlessly. If you are a fan of The Vampire Chronicles then you will be pleased by some of the revelations in this episode.

NOTE: It is unnecessary to have read The Lives of the Mayfair Witches trilogy to understand and appreciate this book. While many say that this is a union of the Rice's witches and her vampires is not entirely accurate. Only a single character from the First Street Mayfair bloodline is mentioned and only to make the most flimsy of connections. It would be a truer statement to say that this novel is a melding of Rice's vampires (read: characters) with the world of her witches (read: rules, physics, and powers).

However I do suggest you read this AND the witches trilogy before reading Blackwood Farm or Blood Canticle
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on 23 August 2013
Good points: the usual Anne Rice talent for atmosphere (especially historical or weird atmosphere); fast-paced adventure that can make for a real page-turner; fascinating knowledge of ancient cultures and magic rituals; good plot line and variety. Like others, I find the mixture of witches and vampires makes for a refreshing change.

Not so good: for me she tanks on romance and "love interest", veering into sentimentality that's just not believable - l suppose it appeals to some but not to me (imo her treatment of gay attachments tends to be more credible); in this novel the transformation of the title character in Eliza Doolittle fashion by the Talamasca is cliche verging on the risible. It may appeal to those identifying with her of a narcissistic bent. From impoverished, neglected waif to brilliant scholar of "perfect Greek" and ability to speak conversational Latin in 4 years? but not without weaknesses such as a liking for the bottle (no goody-two-shoes she!) come on, Anne: in your dreams.

The original quest of Louis for Claudia also gets lost in the jungle before re-emerging towards the end almost as an after-thought. And then.....after all that, it seems to lead to a dead end as far as Louis and Claudia go. But still, an engrossing read; her pluses far outweigh her minuses for those on the same, offbeat wavelength.
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on 2 November 2014
Anne Rice is a writer with whom I've spent a lot of time over the years. In my mid-teens, I read nothing but vampire fiction for six months. Novels by Ms. Rice became part of my staple diet. Since my period of gluttony, I've read few vampire stories, but thought that I would return to the genre. Picking up where I stopped, I found a copy of 'Merrick' and read it cover to cover.

At first, there was nothing to dissuade me. 'Merrick' is hardly an intimidating novel. Margins are wide, vocabulary is simple, and the dialogue is declarative. Regrettably, these became faults of the book. Ms. Rice writes little in the way of detail. It became difficult to conjure images in my mind with statements like: 'There was a mountain.'

Another problem with 'Merrick' is that Ms. Rice writes in a reminiscent style. Characters spend much of their time sitting with friends and recalling traumatic events. This would be fine for a single scene, but this technique dominates the novel. Overall, 'Merrick' loses any sense of narrative drive. Reading the book was like pushing a boulder up a hill.

In summary, I recommend Ms. Rice's earlier novels - especially 'Interview with a Vampire' - but give this one a miss.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 25 August 2011
This is the seventh book in Anne Rice's vampire chronicles series, and even though it is not the best of the series, it is still a great read.

The story is narrated by David Talbot and focuses on David's relationship with the powerful witch Merrick Mayfair. Lestat is withdrawn in a deep sleep and David has become the companion of Louis de Pointe du Lac, who is tormented by the memories of the child vampire Claudia. In order to ease his pain, David asks his old protégé from his Talamasca days, the beautiful and dangerous Merrick to call the ghost of Claudia.

Although Louis' encounter with his long lost beloved child is brief, the story of Merrick is fascinating and powerful. Rice has wonderfully enriched her vampire world with ghosts, spirits, voodoo traditions, Mayan magic and interesting adventures in the jungles of Guatemala. This haunting and atmospheric book, is excellently written, with well developed characters, suspense and fantastic descriptions.
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on 5 November 2001
I find this book to be a massive improvement on the turgid prose of its predecessors, The Vampire Armand and that attempted re-write of Dante's superior work, Memnoch the Devil. However, this book is by no means anywhere on a par with the first three novels in a previously compelling series.
Although Rice's prose has improved a little, the characterisation of Louis and Lestat is totally unforgivable. Louis, that dark, sensual vampire of "Interview With the Vampire" is terribly twisted now. His reasoning-- can there be redemption for a killer-- is discarded because he wants, like any teenager, 'to belong'. Ahh.
And Merrick, well, she drinks rum. And she's spiritually talented. She's clever and loved instantly by *every* character and despite the nasty trick she performs on Louis, is forgiven, because she's so lovable. That's characterisation so shallow that you can see the words on the other side of the page. Or, for the unitiated, it's what many writers call a 'Mary-Sue', a beautiful, amazing person based on the author with no faults whatsoever.
So, are there any strengths?
Well, yes, sort of. What I will say for this book is that, as someone who loves the sheer *feel* of New Orleans-- that mixture of heat and the occult and offbeat history-- it is beautifully portrayed in this book. For that reason alone, it merits the two stars.
I'm also annoyed at those who proclaim that if we don't like these drastic changes, we can lump it. What a silly suggestion-- the people who loved those first books and rushed out to buy them made Rice's career. I think we are right to expect a good adventure, or none at all. Because these new titles are a serious burden to Rice's credibility as a good author-- it is particuarly damaging to the classic "Interview With the Vampire."
In sum, if you don't care for canon, and like your characters changing out of all recognition, go ahead and buy it. If you don't care about the characters anyway, and want some beautiful descriptions of Louisiana, then, yes, buy it, because that is the strength of the novel. If, however, you're expecting a good read on the par with her earlier works, steer clear. You'll only feel cheated at the end.
Go and re-read Interview, or, spend your money on a groundbreaking new author, not a deteriorating one.
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on 26 July 2015
A great read and continues the vampire tales well. I really enjoyed the ending and opens up a new adventure for the vampires. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who has been reading Anne Rice's chronicles.
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on 16 January 2003
This book was a breath of fresh air for the chronicles. Memnoch was, for me, a complete disappointment. Although i thoroughly enjoyed Pandora snd The Vampire Armand, they were not new, we already had a brief knowledge of their stories. So this story was a real come back for Ms Rice in my opinion.
The only disappointment i had, was that it was implied that Louis would be the central character. This is not the case. This is Merrick's story, she merely becomes involved in the chronicles because of Louis and their stoies become intertwined towards the end of the novel.
In this book Ms Rice has been very clever in introducing the Mayfair clan to us but telling us she shall not go into details about their story as it is a different story. Some clever self advertising as i immediatley wanted to read the stories of the Mayfair Witches after this.
A must for any fan of the chronicles!
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