A while back I heard somewhere that The Witching Hour was going to be made into a big screen movie. Anticipation and excitement filled me at this prospect, but I have as yet to hear or see anything more. What’s the hold up, I wonder? This book would be amazing to watch! Anyhoo, y’all remember The Witching Hour written by the famously talented Anne Rice, right? (Anne Rice is the author of that little vampire tale.) Well, if you don’t (tsk! tsk!), and for the Mayfair virgins out there, here’s a quick rundown.
The Witching Hour is an incredibly eerie and chilling tale of the matriarchal Mayfair family who just happen to be a long line of witches. This powerful clan is deeply embedded in New Orleans and all that is Southern gentility — though they hail from Scotland — and even journeyed to Haiti before finallly becoming firmly entrenched in the crumbling secrecy of the famed First Street House.
They are an extremely wealthy and successful family, very tight knit despite the plethora of family members. They have a family law firm founded by Julien, one of the most powerful of male witches ever born to the Mayfairs. The Mayfair law firm deftly manages the Mayfair Legacy, the Mayfair Emerald, and the female designee who is always chosen by the last designee (or so they think).
The Mayfairs also have an inescapable covenant with a dangerous and seductive spirit named Lasher.This ancient and compelling wraith is at the center of the Mayfair lives. He is what drives them, haunts them, and twists and weaves the very fabric of their lives. Yet simply he is Lasher, and he will terrify you, the reader, even as you love him, I promise you. Delicious.
The pseudo antagonists of this story are the mysterious Talamasca, a slightly decaying and aged secret order that at times reminded me of the church in its composition, but who are gifted scholars recording and witnessing the supernatural. They have in their possession a veritable treasure trove of occult artifacts, extensive archives of all sorts of paranormal events, occurrences and entities from throughout the ages. All this they cleave tightly to the bosom of their inner sanctum, as if these things were part of their own private museum. And knowledge of Lasher is the centerpiece of this collection. For the Talamasca, Lasher holds a fascination that is an obsession. An obsession that they long to know and understand, maybe even possess. But who can really know the minds of such a secret society?
These silent watchers, or supernatural spies if you will, have of course chronicled the lives of the Mayfair witches for centuries, unwittingly becoming bound to the very witches they were set to simply watch, and despite the very real peril to their own lives. But the witches are wise, “the man” is always close at hand. The devilish Lasher will protect his own as long as it serves his malevolent desire to live and breathe.
Of course there’s lots more to this frightening tale. It is filled with the exploits of the many witches, their passions and pitfalls and hair raising paranormal peccadilloes. It is a book that is decadent and alluring, seductive and thrilling, abounding with deeds of very questionable morality and conscience, filled with delightful tricks that are a definite treat. Too delicious, right? It is definitely Anne Rice at her best. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this trilogy of novels, which include Lasher and Taltos, Amazon is selling them in an affordable bundle. So pick up a copy of each and slide into this sensual and lush world filled with characters that will leave an indelible and tangible imprint upon you and are guaranteed to unnerve far beyond the last page.
As you can see, I definitely think this work of fabulous fiction is highly screen worthy. (And don’t all authors, writers and storytellers yearn to write characters and stories like this?) As for dream casting, I think Orlando Bloom would make a delectable Lasher. Read The Witching Hour and you will see why I think this. If you have already read the book, do you agree with my casting choice for Lasher? Any ideas on who could play Rowan Mayfair, Michael Curry and Aaron Lightner? Do tell if you do.