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THE LAST VAMPIRE. Hardcover – 2001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Atria Books (2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743417208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743417204
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 2.7 x 24.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 653 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,956,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Everyone knew the sins of Miriam Blaylock. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars

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By A Customer on Oct. 22 2003
Format: Hardcover
Miriam is an enduring character. I was delighted to read this sequel to "The Hunger." Apart from the fact that the film version of "The Hunger" did not at all do the book justice, the performances of Catherine Deneuve (Miriam), Susan Sarandon (Sarah), and David Bowie (John) made the film, and even after all of these years, the book, a tremendous cult success.
I'm reading "The Last Vampire," and loving every page. Strieber's creative ideas of human herds and his own spin on vampire history and behavior are compelling and throught provoking. I can't help but notice that the character Miriam in "The Last Vampire" appears to be precisely and deliciously written for Deneuve. I'm chalking this up to character visualization, since so many people liken Miriam to Deneuve. This gets me to thinking that there might be a film in the works, or at least the beginnings thereof. A little net searching turns up the fact that the movie rights have been sold. But, and here's the kicker, Deneuve and Sarandon, who made "The Hunger" movie adaptation a MAJOR success, aren't being considered for the movie adaptation of "The Last Vampire"? Miriam Blaylock is over 3000 years old, but Catherine Deneuve, born in 1943, is too old to play her? Miriam's youth is supposed to be timeless. In case Hollywood hasn't noticed, Deneuve is timeless. What is the problem with Hollywood and older actresses? I can't imagine why the film industry would fail to consider the cult fan base for this project.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Last Vampire begins twenty or so years after the ending of Strieber's cult novel The Hunger (to which TLV is a continuation of) with Miriam Blaylock seeking a mate so she may not lose her last chance to have a child. Instead of finding a mate, she finds a nightmare. Humans, which are considered by all vampires but her to be nothing but mindless cattle upon which to feed, have become aware of their blood drinking Keepers and are now waging a fierce war to kill them off. It seems that, in Asia at least, the humans have been successful. Miriam flees, stopping only long enough to feed, but makes a terrible mistake. A terrible mistake that allows CIA Agent and Vampire Hunter Paul Ward to pick up her trail and the chase is on. Quite a merry chase it turns out to be, from Bangkok to Paris to New York. Strieber reinvents his horror novel to an epic supporting universe and manages to bring back Sarah Roberts, the guilt ridden victim of Miriam's seduction in The Hunger, as well. Most of the novel is an enlongated chase sequence, Strieber showing a welcome dexterity in both characterization and world building while his characters either flee or pursue. There is no shortage of bloodletting and even some nice tongue-in-cheek references to some of Strieber's other works, not to mention a nice twist on the sometimes insane level of Political Correctness in the world. The only downside that readers should be forewarned about is that The Last Vampire does appear to be a chapter in a much larger body of work and it will leave most with a hunger for more. Recommended.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Last Vampire is an admirable sequel to The Hunger, published seven years earlier. The story follows Miriam Blaylock from Tailand to Paris and back to New York where she had intended to visit the once a century Conclaves where the Keepers convene. Mariam is considered quite a rebel in the eyes of other Keepers since she lives her life in the mainstream, flaunts money, technology, and is up to date with all of the latest marvels of modern time. During her visits, something goes seriously wrong and the old Keepers are being killed, removed from the face of the earth. Miriam, now also on the run for her life, return to the sanctity and protection of her New York home, and nightclub.
The book retains the style of it's predecessor, The Hunger, of seven years ago. The same colorful writing style, amusing descriptions, and suspense is consistent in both books. Surprising turn of events and an intriguing storyline continue to develop throughout. I read them back to back and could barely tell that there was such a span between the two books.
Based on the apparent outcome of the book, I would have liked to have more of a history of the Keepers and how they originated and developed throughout time. Perhaps Mr. Strieber will provide additional books at some later time. If you liked The Hunger, then you should read this sequel.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Two hundred pages into "The Last Vampire" I was completely enthralled. Strieber's vampire mythology is both innovative and stunning. Mirian Blaylock is memorable; Paul Ward is intriguing for his moral ambiguity. All was good.
Then it all went to hell. I can only speculate that Strieber became lazy: how else can we explain the glaring inconsistencies in the story? At one point Mirian suggests that there are some 100 or so Asian vampires. Then the number is, oh, about sixty. Finally, the Asian coven is destroyed with the death of, oh, seventeen of the "pure bloods." And the entire European vampire population is decimated by killing a handful of vampires in Paris and, off camera, Berlin. Gee, after fifty thousand years you might think there would have been a few more. Finally, the entire vampire population of the United States is also destroyed (again, off camera).
But wait...there's more (or, in this case, less). Wondrous as it is, Strieber's mythology postulates that all pure blood vampires are ageless. In this case, all pure bloods would be newborns. How can it be that some are young and some are older (Rice completely avoids this conundrum by not having any pure bloods: since her vampires can not have sex, all vampires are, in Strieber's nomenclature, "blooded")?
There are problems as well with Miriam: sensitive at first, she becomes, as the novel progresses, both ruthless and cruel. Paul Ward is abruptly transformed from a clear-headed vampire hunter to a puppylove slave to Miriam.
What a shame. There is so much to admire here: the Book(s) of Names; the language of Prime; the suggestion that vampires are "from the stars" and gained control of Earth (and human evolution) some fifty thousand years ago. Delightful.
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