If you've been waiting for Anne Rice to return to the tales that made her an icon, today's your lucky day.
After more than two weeks of teasing via her Facebook Page, Rice appeared on her son Christopher's Internet variety series The Dinner Party Show Sunday and revealed that her next book will be a new installment in her beloved Vampire Chronicles series, the first since the 10th (and, Rice declared at the time, final) book in the series, Blood Canticle, was published in 2003. Titled Prince Lestat, the book will continue the story of the titular vampire Lestat and the other major vampires in the series as they try to make their way in the world after their entire existence was rocked by the events of The Queen of the Damned, The Tale of the Body Thief and Memnoch the Devil.
"It is a big Vampire Chronicle, and it's all about Lestat and all about the vampires and what they're doing right now, how they're coming to terms with everything that's happened to them and how Lestat is dealing with the demand from all sides that he step forward and become some sort of leader of the tribe," Rice said. "It's a sequel to the first five Vampire Chronicles. This is really the follow-up to all of that."
Rice famously left the series that made her one of the world's bestselling authors in the early 2000s, intending to devote her energies to a series of novels about the life of Christ. She has since published two novels in her Christ the Lord series, along with two novels about angels that make up the Songs of the Seraphim series. In 2012, she returned to more traditional supernatural fiction with the werewolf novel The Wolf Gift, and its sequel, The Wolves of Midwinter. Rice has certainly remained prolific over the last decade, but many fans kept wishing for a return to vampire fiction, and now Rice has done just that, though she doesn't necessarily attribute Prince Lestat to fan influence.
"I'm not sure it was everybody asking because I truly felt that I couldn't, and I was telling them sincerely 'No, that will never happen. That's just not going to happen.' And I meant it. I didn't think that it would. I'm not sure what really did it," Rice said. "Let's just say I finally had a novel to write. I had a story to tell with [Lestat], and I had his voice again with me, and it happened. I couldn't make that happen. I couldn't force that. I couldn't just pull that out of a hat like a rabbit. I do think going back and reading all the books, feeling I had a lot more to say, getting really excited, 'What if, what if, what if?' as I read. That made a big deal of difference."
And if you were already excited about the news of even one more Lestat adventure, there's more good news: Rice is already hinting that there will be further sequels.
"I feel like this is novel one of a new incarnation of The Vampire Chronicles," Rice said.
Prince Lestat will hit bookstores on Oct. 28, 2014, just in time for Halloween reading. You can see video of Rice announcing and discussing the book on The Dinner Party Show below.
(Via Dread Central)