A melancholy walk through ancient history in the company of Marius, the two thousand year old vampire known and loved by both Lestat and Armand.
The history again is the main draw for me in this instalment (and what I felt was largely missing from Merrick), as we get to see the rise and fall of great civilizations as well as their cultures and art through the eyes of the more intellectual and learned of Rice's vampires.
There were moments when I felt like we were revisiting old themes a little too much - scenes revolving around Marius' passions for painting and Amadeo lingered over long at times, thanks to having already seen quite a lot of them in The Vampire Armand - and although ancient and wise Marius could be quite infuriating at times due to his propensity to throw hissy fits and stomp off taking Those Who Must Be Kept with him like a kid going home with his football when the game doesn't go his way. I also didn't really care about Thorne for the ending to have much of an impact on me and, in fact, had kind of forgotten that he was 'listening' to Marius.
All in all though, mostly my gripes come from missing Lestat, and this suffers only slightly from comparison.