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The Heavens Rise Hardcover – October 15, 2013

220 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Although Rice (A Density of Souls) refers to his story as a €œchronicle of monsters and magic,€ it would be more accurate to describe it as a masterful coming-of-age novel. Set in a present-day New Orleans beset by natural disaster and human corruption, the story focuses on four young people: Niquette Delongpre, a child of privilege; her longtime best friend from childhood, Ben; her lover, Anthem; and Marshall, the outsider who plays the serpent in the others' adolescent Eden. Shortly after Niquette and Marshall are attacked by mysterious pool-dwelling organisms, Niquette and her family drive off the road. Marshall jumps through a 31st-story window, landing in a comatose state from which he can psychically cause acts of carnage. Chapters from different perspectives slowly reconstruct the tapestry of connections among Niquette, Anthem, and Ben, and poignantly captures the boys' inarticulate pain over Niquette's loss and their personal struggles. Rice's characters are complex and real, his dialogue pitch-perfect, and his writing intelligent and strong. He builds suspense beautifully as Marshall's malevolence reaches a crescendo of violence amid enduring philosophical questions about what it means to be human. (Oct.)

From Booklist

Creepy, chilling, and almost impossible to put down all describe the new novel by New York Times best-selling author Rice. In the swampy areas of New Orleans, Niquette Delongpre’s family discovers an old well on their property, whose contents have dark supernatural properties. During a clandestine meeting, Niquette and her high-school classmate, Marshall Ferriot, are immersed in the well water; within days, Niquette and her entire family are presumed dead and Marshall is in a vegetative state after throwing himself out a window in front of a hundred onlookers during a black-tie fundraising event. Years later, as Marshall sits in a coma in the hospital, things begin to die around him. Nurses first notice the dead birds and squirrels lined up outside his room; then a nurse, alone in his room, silently fillets herself with a surgical blade. This is only the start of what Marshall has planned. This is a horror novel, but in the telling of this page-turner, Rice also manages to deftly address issues of race and class in the Big Easy. --Alison Downs
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Gallery Books; First Edition edition (October 15, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476716080
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476716084
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (220 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #547,831 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

By the age of 30, Christopher Rice had published four New York Times bestselling thrillers, received a Lambda Literary Award and been declared one of People Magazine's Sexiest Men Alive. His two novels of dark supernatural suspense, THE HEAVENS RISE and THE VINES, were both finalists for the Bram Stoker Award. He recently entered the erotic romance genre with three works in all new series called The Desire Exchange. They include THE FLAME, THE SURRENDER GATE and KISS THE FLAME, due out in November 2015. His debut novel, A DENSITY OF SOULS, was published when the author was just 22 years old. A controversial and overnight bestseller, it was greeted with a landslide of media attention, much of it devoted to the fact that Christopher is the son of famed vampire chronicler, Anne Rice. Together with his best friend, New York Times bestselling novelist Eric Shaw Quinn, Christopher launched his own Internet radio show. THE DINNER PARTY SHOW WITH CHRISTOPHER RICE & ERIC SHAW QUINN is always playing at TheDinnerPartyShow.com and every episode is available for free download from the site's show archive or on iTunes.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Tim Irwin on October 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"The Heavens Rise" is a brave new entry in the world of thrillers and horror, and it is an exceptional first venture into that world by Christopher Rice. When I saw the first announcements of his new book, I took a leap of faith and pre-ordered his novel. The teasers posted on Facebook only served to heighten my anticipation of the release date and set the bar high for my expectations. No doubt some of those expectations were a conceit on my part, having been an avid fan of his mother, Anne Rice, for many years (especially after the opportunity to meet her in Philly and share some personal thoughts on my favorite novel of hers, "Memnoch The Devil"). Still, I tried to read the novel objectively and in light of its own merit.

Christopher Rice successfully creates a captivating tale of the supernatural that intuitively blends the genera of thriller and horror. He painstakingly paints both the soul of New Orleans and the mindset of her people, pre and post-Katrina, as the backdrop and pulse of a story filled with love, time-tested friendships, and revenge versus revenge. It's a story that builds an inescapable momentum, slowly at first, written from the perspectives of the key characters. Each successive chapter weaves those characters closer together in an intricate web of powerful love and hate, as events spiral more chaotically to a satisfying climax.

It's difficult to put into words what nuances made this novel so compelling to read. The descriptive nature of the environments made it easy to picture myself in the center of the action. The characters and their evolving relationships were believable, likeable and well thought out. The requisite horror and gore evolved maliciously in step with the characters (as opposed to being excessive or a distractive literary crutch).
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Lindy@ A Bookish Escape on October 31, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
My Thoughts:

The Heavens Rise, by Christopher Rice, was a good paranormal horror story. The first thing that caught my eye was the way Mr. Rice described things. His prose were very detailed, and lent themselves to very graphic visualizations in my head. He has a very beautiful and prolific writing style. As for the story plot, it was very intricate, complex, and at times a bit confusing. There were a ton of characters, and view points. Also, the story jumped back and forth between the past and present.

The Heavens Rise had a very interesting premise. It was about a teenage girl, Niquette, as well as a her boyfriend, Anthem, their good friend Ben, and a scary and psychotic guy that is obsessed with Niquette, named Marshall. When Niquette and Anthem break up, she starts dating Marshall. One night, Niquette and Marshall go swimming in her new pool, (which has been filled from an old well,) and things get out of hand. Marshall tries to force himself on Niquette, and when she runs away from him, she sees these scary looking white creature things that are crawling all over her. Afterwards, a ton of bizarre events begin taking place. Niquette and her family disappear. At the same time animals and people start dying. Little by little, the mystery and horror of what's taking place starts to unravel, and it's not pretty.

The Heavens Rise was not what I would refer to as easy reading. When you read this book, you need to make sure that you have no distractions, and are able to really focus on the story. At times, I found that there was a little too much description, and I needed more action to take place.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Bob Lind on October 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Niquette (Nikki) Delongpre lived with her upper-class parents in New Orleans, while they were finishing their showplace estate which they called Elysium, in a swampy bayou area outside of the city. Nikki had been a popular girl in prep school, where she dated Anthem Landry, a handsome but somewhat dim blue collar transfer. They had been apart only a short time, when Nikki went on one date with Marshall Ferriot, who tried to force himself on her, ending the date prematurely. A lasting effect from that evening was that both Marshall and Nikki got infected by a strange parasite, present in the untreated well water in Elysium's recently-finished pool. Not long after, Nikki and her family vanished, and their wrecked car suggested that they may have died in an accident en route to the estate, though no bodies were ever found in the bayou.

Nikki's disappearance affected all those she knew, but especially Anthem, who fell into an alcoholic haze soon thereafter. Their best friend had been Ben Broyard, a slight but outspoken gay teen, who now spent much of his time trying to befriend Anthem and try to get him sober. Marshall had attempted suicide, and ended up in a comatose state in a long-term care facility, where the nurses swore that he somehow could control people and small animals just by making eye contact.

Fans of the talented Mr. Rice have been awaiting his new book for over three years, and will not be disappointed. Taking his first giant step into the supernatural genre, the author delivers an engrossing (though a bit overly complex and gory) tale of the mysterious bayou country, with its racial and class disconnects, political and corporate corruption, personal greed and revenge, and regrets for actions that could not be undone.
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