There’s this little series on HBO called True Blood. You might have heard of it. You may have even heard it’s based on a series of books. But who has time to read when there’s great sex and gore on TV?
Find. The. Time.
Charlaine Harris‘ series about Sookie Stackhouse has been one of my favorite since before HBO grabbed onto it. (Yeah, I got cred, baby.) I remember seeing the cover art for Dead to the World at my local library years ago and being intrigued; I was bored with the artistic style of most fantasy covers. Then I read the back. Vampire romance? Mystery? Bleh. Not my thing. I challenged myself to read some of it just to prove that I didn’t want to read it. The fact that it was the fourth book in the series would almost guarantee I wouldn’t like it.
My subconscious knew what it was doing. The book was sexy, fun, had an intriguing plot, and the heroine kicked ass while still managing to be a down-to-earth woman trying to make sense of it all. I quickly went back to my library for the first three books, and then waited for more. Along with Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden Files, this is my favorite fantasy series.
But something changed in the Sookie books later on. Bad things always happened to the main character, but now really bad stuff started to happen, and she wasn’t able to bounce back. Sookie reacted very much like a real person. Unfortunately, it gave the series a darker tone (and we started with vampires, so that’s saying a lot). I blame it on Hurricane Katrina making the author sad. I heard Charlaine Harris speak about Deadlocked, on the radio. She said at one point in the series she started adding all these new elements because she had started to become bored. And when that didn’t help she realized it was time to end it all. There will be one more book and that’s that for Sookie.
The series began with lots of romance, gripping mystery, rounded characters, and some yippee sex scenes. With Deadlocked we have an intense mystery, fully-developed characters, and relationship issues. I read the book in a day, unable to put it down because Harris knows how to write plot. But I miss the romance, and the sex used to be so good. Sigh…
Still, I can’t wait to read the next one.