Authors or Works Similar to Anne Rice?

Michael Colton

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It was suggested to me that I ask this question here. I did not even realize this subforum existed. o_O

So my question is whether people know of authors or works that are similar to Anne Rice? Since she has tried to avoid genre distinctions for her work, it can be difficult to draw parallels with other current authors. This could be theme, setting, style of prose, focus of narration, topics - all of those things in her work appeal to me but I have had a difficult time finding similar work.

She is usually described as 'gothic fiction' even though that is not really a genre anymore, but others on this site in different sections said they would describe her as a form of horror. So I am asking this here.

I am not necessarily asking for works that include vampires. It could even be a story similar to her non-fantastical work such as Cry To Heaven. So the primary point is that I am not particularly looking for 'slasher' or even the 'weird,' but contemporary authors that work in a more gothic fashion. Since gothic is one of those oft-debated terms, I suppose I shall quickly say what I mean by it. There tends to be a focus on emotion, the importance of setting as essentially a character of its own, typically set in periods that are not current, often includes somewhat Byronic characters, and essentially all of the other elements tied to the darker segments of the Romanticist movement.

Thank you in advance. :)
 

Randy M.

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Style, material, focus ... it's all a bit like trying to nail Jell-O to the wall, isn't it?

To a degree what you seem to be asking for fits less with Gothic fiction, horror or fantasy, and rather close to Southern fiction, or what's sometimes called Southern Gothic, largely because of the influence and example of William Faulkner. Anyway, I'm keying on that because it's been so long since I read Rice these really are just best guesses:

Vampires (really guesses, since I haven't read either; you might check comments/reviews on Goodreads to see if either comes close):
Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
Les Daniels
(Daniels and Yarbro both wrote historical vampire series; I take it Daniels vampire was nasty and vicious, and Yarbro's more elegant)​
Motherless Child by Glen Hirshberg (reading this now, about 1/3 through it, and not really Rice-like, but fits your criteria of emotion; Hirshberg is not a Southern writer, but this is set in contemporary North Carolina and I think he's tailored his writing to fit more in that mold)

Prose style (maybe a misnomer here, more story-telling style):
William Gay (Twilight, Southern story-telling at a high level)
Caitlin Kiernan (The Red Tree; to a lesser extent, Threshold and The Drowning Girl; she's more experimental in approach than I recall Rice being, though)
Poppy Z. Brite (her story collection, Wormwood is what I have in mind since I haven't read her novels)
Davis Grubb (again, I'm thinking short stories and finding his short stories might be rather hard; his novel Night of the Hunter might also fit, but I've only seen the movie)

Gothic:
Obvious suspects:
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

Less obvious suspects:
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Absalom, Absalom & Light in August by William Faulkner
All the Kings Men by Robert Penn Warren
The Fathers by Allen Tate
(I think the last two and the Lee might be the ones most likely to scratch your Southern story-telling itch, but Absalom, Absalom is the most amazing novel I've read)


Randy M.
 

Michael Colton

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Ah, I did forget to mention the Southern Gothic term. I have seen Rice referred to as touching upon that tradition, as well. And thank you much for the suggestions. I loved In Cold Blood, All the King's Men, Dracula, and Wuthering Heights - so it appears you are understanding my aim fairly well. I will definitely check out those you have mentioned. :)

Edit: I just looked up Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and sheez is The Saint-Germaine Cycle ever long! If I enjoyed it, that would provide a huge amount of reading. :)
 
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Randy M.

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Ah, I did forget to mention the Southern Gothic term. I have seen Rice referred to as touching upon that tradition, as well. And thank you much for the suggestions. I loved In Cold Blood, All the King's Men, Dracula, and Wuthering Heights - so it appears you are understanding my aim fairly well. I will definitely check out those you have mentioned. :)

Edit: I just looked up Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and sheez is The Saint-Germaine Cycle ever long! If I enjoyed it, that would provide a huge amount of reading. :)

You're welcome.

Another thought, a lot of what is called Southern Gothic also keys off a Virginia gentleman named Poe. If you've read Poe and liked him, I'd recommend Allen Tate's novel. It's so Southern it drips Spanish Moss.

Another Southerner to consider is Fred Chappell; More Shapes than One is a really good story collection from a guy whose reputation came in the mainstream but these stories are mainly fantasy/horror.


Randy M.
 

Michael Colton

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You're welcome.

Another thought, a lot of what is called Southern Gothic also keys off a Virginia gentleman named Poe. If you've read Poe and liked him, I'd recommend Allen Tate's novel. It's so Southern it drips Spanish Moss.

Another Southerner to consider is Fred Chappell; More Shapes than One is a really good story collection from a guy whose reputation came in the mainstream but these stories are mainly fantasy/horror.


Randy M.

Lovely, I will certainly pursue them. And yes, I do enjoy Poe. I have his entire collected works as well as some published personal documents. :)
 

Fried Egg

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I would definitely consider "Fevre Dream" by George R. R. Martin if you haven't already read it. A well written story featuring vampires in the deep south of America.
 

Michael Colton

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I would definitely consider "Fevre Dream" by George R. R. Martin if you haven't already read it. A well written story featuring vampires in the deep south of America.

I will put it on a tentative list, but after reading GoT I am unlikely to continue with anything else of his. But thanks for the suggestion. :)
 

J-Sun

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I will put it on a tentative list, but after reading GoT I am unlikely to continue with anything else of his. But thanks for the suggestion. :)

I can't speak to either FD or GOT (I have FD and read a few pages when I wasn't ready to start reading it and almost got sucked in (heh) anyway) but I will say Martin is not someone who should be judged on the basis of one work. His early and late careers seem almost completely different and his early career had great variety in itself. I mean, you may not like him in any facet, but I'm just saying he is multi-faceted.
 

Michael Colton

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I can't speak to either FD or GOT (I have FD and read a few pages when I wasn't ready to start reading it and almost got sucked in (heh) anyway) but I will say Martin is not someone who should be judged on the basis of one work. His early and late careers seem almost completely different and his early career had great variety in itself. I mean, you may not like him in any facet, but I'm just saying he is multi-faceted.

I will keep FD in the back of my mind when I am ready for a break from the dozen or so books I have just ordered on Amazon that I have discovered through the help of several people on Chrons. :) I assumed that I would not like anything else of his due to how severely I disliked GOT, but maybe that is not the case.
 

Fried Egg

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I will put it on a tentative list, but after reading GoT I am unlikely to continue with anything else of his. But thanks for the suggestion. :)
I'm not a fan of "Game of Thrones" either but I really liked "Fevre Dream". It was written some 20 years or so before he even started that series and it is completely different. That's what I thought anyway...
 

Michael Colton

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I'm not a fan of "Game of Thrones" either but I really liked "Fevre Dream". It was written some 20 years or so before he even started that series and it is completely different. That's what I thought anyway...

Alright. I will keep it on a backup list. Thanks to all of the lovely people around here I have received many suggestions the last few days, so I now have quite a bit to explore.
 

Juliana

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I really enjoyed Fevre Dream, and found it nothing like GoT. Much more along the lines of Anne's work. Go for it. :)

Also, if you want to try something different, in terms of vampires and witches, I've thoroughly enjoyed Deborah Harkness' trilogy. The first book is A Discovery of Witches, and the main character is a Yale professor studying alchemy. Her vampire love is a scientist researching genetics. First book is set in present, but second is almost entirely set in Elizabethan England. Harkness is a Yale prof herself (history) and knows her stuff. The last came out recently; haven't read yet.
 

Michael Colton

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I really enjoyed Fevre Dream, and found it nothing like GoT. Much more along the lines of Anne's work. Go for it. :)

Also, if you want to try something different, in terms of vampires and witches, I've thoroughly enjoyed Deborah Harkness' trilogy. The first book is A Discovery of Witches, and the main character is a Yale professor studying alchemy. Her vampire love is a scientist researching genetics. First book is set in present, but second is almost entirely set in Elizabethan England. Harkness is a Yale prof herself (history) and knows her stuff. The last came out recently; haven't read yet.

Thank you much for the suggestion. :) And perhaps Fevre Dream can stay on my tentative list since so many people say it is very different from GOT.
 

Triceratops

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I just had to say that I've loved Anne Rice ever since she pulled me out of my depressive funk. After nearly dying and giving up on everything, I watched every one of her instructional writing videos and they were so inspiring and healing, I got back on my horse again. Just published an erotic romance and sold a YA trilogy. (My agent did, I mean). I was seriously near suicide. That is all.
 

Juliana

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I just had to say that I've loved Anne Rice ever since she pulled me out of my depressive funk. After nearly dying and giving up on everything, I watched every one of her instructional writing videos and they were so inspiring and healing, I got back on my horse again.

I'm really glad you found an author who could do that for you. Nice to have you back with us, and congratulations on the romance and the trilogy! :)
 

Triceratops

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I'm really glad you found an author who could do that for you. Nice to have you back with us, and congratulations on the romance and the trilogy! :)

Most appreciated for the well wishes and congrats. This forum keeps my mind off other things. Got to stay busy on the writing front.
 

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