Carolyn Todd
October 30, 2014 AT 12:00 PM EDT

Though vampires are quite literally old as time, the pop-cultural phenomenon of the bloodsucking antihero seems so very… 2014. But Edward Cullen, Damon Salvatore, and Bill Compton have nothing on Lestat de Lioncourt, the glamorous 18th-century French vampire who we first met in 1976 in Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire—the novel that spawned the 1994 film adaptation in which Tom Cruise played Lestat (opposite Brad Pitt’s Louis de Pointe du Lac).

Rice wrote 10 more books in The Vampire Chronicles—and the damned immortal just won’t die: Prince Lestat, the latest installment of the supernatural series, hit shelves this week, and Time posted an exclusive excerpt on Thursday.

The last readers heard from the bloodthirsty narrator was in 2003’s Blood Canticle, a literary crossover populated by clashing characters from The Vampire Chronicles and Rice’s The Lives of the Mayfair Witches series. This book was supposed to put a stake in the heart of the series, but earlier this year, Rice announced she was reviving the series. Prince veers across centuries timeline-wise, but it picks up in the present day as Lestat and company are coming to terms with the events of the last book—and the Brat Prince’s ascension to leadership.

Read the full except here.

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