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From the author of the Vampire Chronicles comes a huge, hypnotic novel of the occult, with an 60% overnight price cut! The Witching Hour by Anne Rice

The Witching Hour (Lives of Mayfair Witches Book 1)

by Anne Rice
4.5 stars – 2,420 reviews
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Here’s the set-up:
From the author of the extraordinary Vampire Chronicles comes a huge, hypnotic novel of witchcraft and the occult through four centuries.

Demonstrating, once again, her gift for spellbinding storytelling and the creation of legend, Anne Rice makes real for us a great dynasty of witches–a family given to poetry and to incest, to murder and to philosophy; a family that, over the ages, is itself haunted by a powerful, dangerous, and seductive being.

On the veranda of a great New Orleans house, now faded, a mute and fragile woman sits rocking . . . and The Witching Hour begins.

It begins in our time with a rescue at sea.  Rowan Mayfair, a beautiful woman, a brilliant practitioner of neurosurgery–aware that she has special powers but unaware that she comes from an ancient line of witches–finds the drowned body of a man off the coast of California and brings him to life.  He is Michael Curry, who was born in New Orleans and orphaned in childhood by fire on Christmas Eve, who pulled himself up from poverty, and who now, in his brief interval of death, has acquired a sensory power that mystifies and frightens him.

As these two, fiercely drawn to each other, fall in love and–in passionate alliance–set out to solve the mystery of her past and his unwelcome gift, the novel moves backward and forward in time from today’s New Orleans and San Francisco to long-ago Amsterdam and a château in the France of Louis XIV.  An intricate tale of evil unfolds–an evil unleashed in seventeenth-century Scotland, where the first “witch,” Suzanne of the Mayfair, conjures up the spirit she names Lasher . . . a creation that spells her own destruction and torments each of her descendants in turn.

From the coffee plantations of Port au Prince, where the great Mayfair fortune is made and the legacy of their dark power is almost destroyed, to Civil War New Orleans, as Julien–the clan’s only male to be endowed with occult powers–provides for the dynasty its foothold in America, the dark, luminous story encompasses dramas of seduction and death, episodes of tenderness and healing.  And always–through peril and escape, tension and release–there swirl around us the echoes of eternal war: innocence versus the corruption of the spirit, sanity against madness, life against death.  With a dreamlike power, the novel draws us, through circuitous, twilight paths, to the present and Rowan’s increasingly inspired and risky moves in the merciless game that binds her to her heritage. And in New Orleans, on Christmas Eve, this strangest of family sagas is brought to its startling climax.

BookGorilla Readers Find Out First: A 80% Overnight Price Cut for the BEST PRICE EVER! Exit to Eden by Anne Rice, writing as Anne Rampling

Exit to Eden

by Anne Rice
4.4 stars – 351 reviews
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Here’s the set-up:

The bold erotic masterpiece by #1 New York Times bestselling author Anne Rice writing as Anne Rampling.

They call her the Perfectionist. A stunning, mysterious, and fearless sexual adventurer, Lisa is founder and supreme mistress of The Club—an exclusive island resort where forbidden fantasy meets willing flesh. Here eager participants who can afford life’s most exquisite luxuries can experience the breathtaking pleasures of surrender and submission. Here nothing is taboo.

A thrill-seeking photojournalist, Elliott risks his life daily in the most dangerous, war-torn regions on Earth. Now he has come to Paradise to explore his most savage and vulnerable sexual self, committed to the ultimate plunge into personal risk.

Together, their journey to the limits of erotic pleasure will take them farther than they ever dreamed they’d go . . .

The Vampire Chronicles continue with a riveting, rich saga…. Blood Communion: A Tale of Prince Lestat by Anne Rice. BEST PRICE EVER!

Blood Communion: A Tale of Prince Lestat (Vampire Chronicles Book 13)

by Anne Rice
4.6 stars – 552 reviews
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Here’s the set-up:

In this spellbinding novel, Lestat, rebel outlaw, addresses the tribe of vampires, telling us the mesmerizing story of how he became prince of the vampire world, and of the formation of the Blood Communion, and how his vision for the Children of the Universe to thrive as one, came to be.

Lestat takes us from his ancestral castle in the snow-covered mountains of France to the verdant wilds of lush Louisiana, with its lingering fragrances of magnolias and night jasmine; from the far reaches of the Pacific’s untouched islands to the 18th-century city of St. Petersburg and the court of the Empress Catherine. He speaks of his fierce battle of wits and words with the mysterious Rhoshamandes, proud Child of the Millennia, reviled outcast for his senseless slaughter of the legendary ancient vampire Maharet, avowed enemy of Queen Akasha, who refuses to live in harmony at court and who threatens all Lestat has dreamt of . . .

Anne Rice to Bundle Text and Multimedia "Vook" Story for iPhone, iPad, and Other Devices … Including the Kindle "Multi"?

Well, well, well.

Just when we were thinking that Anne Rice, author of the Vampire Chronicles and other bestselling novels, might be seriously considering bringing out her next book as a Kindle exclusive, she’s thrown us a bit of a curveball with the announcement by her literary agency that she’ll be releasing, through Vook, a multimedia edition of “The Master of Rampling Gate,” a vampire story published in Redbook magazine in 1984 and set in an England mansion in the 19th century.

Back on December 13, Rice went on an Amazon customer forum and asked:     

What do you think? If regular publishing is having a very hard time marketing and distributing books effectively, should major authors think about making Kindle (if possible) their primary publisher? Kindle would then be the one to introduce and advertise the book, and Kindle could license limited hard cover editions for those addicted to the “real book.” Would this be good for authors? Would it be good for readers? Would Kindle do it?

She may still be exploring the Kindle idea, of course.

But Vook has been producing video books for Simon & Schuster and the HarperCollins imprint HarperStudio and also making works out of public domain texts. At least for the short term, it’s more likely that we’ll see Vook productions on the iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad than on a Kindle. But for further down the road — perhaps in 2010 — it appears that Amazon is also working on a more expensive Kindle “Multi” model that would be available side-by-side with the popular, current-generation 6-inch Kindle “Uno.” (“Uno” and “Multi” are my placeholder names for the two products, aimed at expressing more simply what they would be all about, but more on that in a later post.)

The Kindle “Multi,” with a color touch screen and faster screen refresh, could accomodate Vook offerings by Anne Rice and other authors, and like th iPad it is bound to generate serious buzz and love.

But it all raises serious questions for me:

  • It’s one thing to change the way we read from words on paper to words on an electronic e-Ink display that emulates paper, but is it really likely that the activity, processes, pleasures and utility of reading are going to transformed from words to words and video and audio for a critical mass of readers?
  • Does the bundling of multimedia with the text of a story or a book add so much value that readers or audience are likely to want to spend significantly more either for the bundled content or for devices on which to play the bundled content?
  • Are authors in any significant numbers likely to transform their own creative processes so that they begin and proceed with the intention to create vooks rather than books?

Don’t get me wrong. I believe there will be cool vooks, and I will occasionally pay to download them. I expect Vook will be a very successful company that will grow dramatically and change in many ways over the next couple of years. I’m convinced that both Amazon and Apple will find ways to deliver vook content on a wide range of different devices, including PCs and Macs.

But I am also skeptical that this will be a mass market any time soon. Of course, that’s basically what Steve Jobs said about the Kindle and ereaders back in January 2008, right?