Anne Rice (born October 4, 1941) is a best-selling American author of horror/fantasy books, Christian literature, and erotica.
She was born Howard Allen Frances O'Brien, the second daughter in a Catholic Irish-American family. Her works have had a major influence on the "Goth" movement, and she has also published a number of works with sado-masochistic themes. She was married to the late poet Stan Rice and is the mother of novelist Christopher Rice. Her daughter, Michele, was born on September 21, 1966 and died of leukemia on August 5, 1972. Anne's sister, Alice Borchardt, is also a noted genre author.
Rice was born and spent most of her life in New Orleans, Louisiana, the city that forms the background against which most of her stories take place. Known for her avid interest in art and culture, she and her family occasionally took trips overseas to study the art later mentioned in her stories. More recently, following the death of her husband Stan Rice, she relocated to the Coachella Valley, California area to be nearer her son, Christopher.
Rice has also published erotica under the pen names Anne Rampling and A.N. Roquelaure, the latter of which was used primarily for more adult-oriented material. Her fiction is often described as lush and descriptive, and her characters' sexuality is fluid, often displaying homoerotic feelings towards each other. She also deals with philosophical and historic themes, weaving them in to the dense pattern of her books, and giving them a highly intellectual, if not highly literary, content. To her admirers, Rice's books are among the best in modern popular fiction, considered by some to possess those elements that create a lasting presence in the literary canon. To her critics, her novels are baroque, "low-brow pulp" and redundant.
Rice cited Charles Dickens, Virginia Woolf, John Milton, Ernest Hemingway, William Shakespeare, the BrontĂ« sisters, Jean-Paul Sartre, Henry James, Arthur Conan Doyle, H. Rider Haggard, and Stephen King as influences on her work.