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September 23, 2008 |

By Brian Prisco | Books | September 23, 2008 |

I was about to give up on the Sookie Stackhouse series in its entirety after books 2 and 3. It started to take this dangerous Anita Blake turn to the left, where it was more about Sookie and her relationship with Bill the Vampire. It started to look like they were going to start to porn Sookie out. This is interesting, because Sookie is the exact opposite of Anita Blake, in that she was a virgin, she believes firmly in monogamy, and she doesn’t kill people. She tries to avoid violence. So far, she’s only iced one person in the series, and it was well done. Most of the time, she gets hurt. I like that about her. She’s an unreliable narrator, and that’s what makes the stories interesting.

Well, they started putting Sookie on Fonzie’s bike, sending her around the south to get involved in other affairs. Harris established her own rules about weres and shifters, who exist in this world, but are not out of the supernatural closet, so to speak. Book 2 involved a coven of vampires in Dallas, and more about the only thing that’s going to potentially save “True Blood” on HBO, the Brotherhood of the Sun, an anti-vampire church that tries to butcher vamps. It’s a great invention, and they’ll get tons of mileage out of it. Book 3 introduced the character of Alcide Herveaux, a were from Mississippi and all around heroic fella.

Book 4 takes place back in Bon Temps (which sounds like a french retard when pronounced on “True Blood”). Sookie has banished all vamps from her life, and has made the New Year’s resolution to “not get beat up this year.” Anyway, while driving home from work, she comes across Eric, the vamp ruler of her little area of the world, naked and mind erased on the side of the road. She takes him home and tries to help him. Meanwhile, her brother disappears, and they are trying to find him. All of this involves a band of witches that have come to Louisiana to demand a cut of everyone’s action. Not only are they witches, but they are witches who are also shifters, who drink vampire blood to get super strength. Magic vampire-strong werewolves. Fuck and yeah.

The action is pretty nice, and Harris finally manages to de-porn the story. After Anita Blake, I’m really sick and tired of reading about vampire loving. It reads like a section from “Fat Lonely Housewife in the Grocery Store Has Hot Sex With A Highlander” or any other romance novel. All vampires apparently fuck for hours, give seventy three orgasms to women two houses over, and are the most gentle and gracious lovers ever. Just once, I would love to see a movie or novel where the character humps awkwardly for two or three minutes, grunts, rolls over and falls asleep or demands a sandwich. And not for comedic effect. Or, you know, a woman in anything who can’t give head. I guess everyone’s just amazing at oral sex. God bless America.

The action is fun, and there are a bunch of clever twists and surprises. My only beef is with the climactic final battle with the coven of witches. But it’s not even a complaint really. It’s actually handled like a real battle scene. The action is chaotic and disturbing and frightening, and it’s really well written. So I guess I don’t have a beef.

Later down my list of paperbacks (I can carry these easier on the bus and into the bathrooms with me at work to read while doing my business), I have book 5 coming up. I’m anxious to read it, it seems promising. I’ll stick out the series a little longer. As for the television series, you’d be better off listening to The Waterboy while anally violating yourself with a copy of the hardback.

This review is part of the Cannonball Read series. You can read more about it, here.

100 Books in One Year #6: Dead to the World by Charlaine Harris (A Sookie Stackhouse Novel)

Cannonball Read / Brian Prisco

Books | September 23, 2008 |

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