Friday, October 30, 2009

Angel Time

Anne Rice, best known for her outstanding Vampire Chronicles and the infamous vampire rock star Lestat, turned to writing for and about God a few years ago. I was a fan of her Vampire Chronicles and tried as I might to get through her first God-related book it bored me terribly.

For me, I felt that the Anne Rice I knew and loved had disappeared. While I was at work on Tuesday I spotted Anne Rice's newest book Angel Time sitting on display. It had just been released and it caught my eye.

I was raised Roman Catholic and always had a fondness for stories of angels. Seeing the book title and knowing a very vague description of the book I immediately grabbed hold of it with all intentions of reading it.

And read it I did.

I was pleasantly surprised with this book. I was interested, entertained, and at the same time expecting some of the more homoerotic and/or gruesome detail that her old books used to contain but this book had none of it.

It was a beautiful tale of a young man who had more or less lost his path in life. A horrible childhood and an adult life with the job of a hit man Toby O'Dare has lost his way. Once he believed in God, once he had believed in angels and the powers of heaven, but that was before he lost his entire family.

But Toby is given a chance that he had never expected. An angel comes to him with an opportunity to truly work for the 'good guys'. He goes back in time to thirteenth-century England where Jews are being accused of murder. He is asked to help these people and in helping them slowly gains back his own humanity.

The book is lovely and written perfectly. Anne Rice always has a tendency to over-describe different things and dive into memories for more time then needed but I feel she worked out exactly as much 'time' as needed in this story. Each memory was presented to the degree of information we needed and each description was perfectly executed.

My mother, who likes literature about spiritual matters and angels, has not read this book and I quickly recommended it to her.

Although Anne Rice might not be writing vampire literature anymore (and believe me, I wish I could get another story about Lestat and Louis one of these days!) I think that her strength in writing has returned. Her tales are interesting with an edge of education added to it. They might not be as dark as they once were, but there is still that edge of darkness, that eternal struggle for what is right from wrong.

It's an interesting book that is thought provoking and easy to turn the pages. I really adored it and enjoyed that I feel like the old Anne Rice I knew and loved is back once again. Writing different genres of fiction, yes, but she's just as strong a novelist as ever.


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