Monday, October 13, 2008

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris *****

I listened to this on audio book because I've been hearing so much about it, now that an HBO series is being aired based on the Sookie Stackhouse/Southern Vampire Mysteries. The narrator Johanna Parker is really, really good - and I enjoyed the book, maybe even more because of her great narration!

Sookie Stackhouse is a cocktail waitress in a small town, Bon Temps, in northern Louisiana. She has what she refers to as a disability - she's telepathic - that is, she can read people's thoughts. She's had to create a way to keep those thoughts out of her mind and it rules her ability to socialize. Most people just think she's a little crazy.

When Bill the Vampire walks into the bar, she's pretty much blown away when she realizes she can't read his mind - which makes him the first person she can be relaxed around. Compound that with her natural curiosity - he's the first vampire she's met now that vampires are being accepted in society as just unfortunate souls who've caught a virus that turns them from human to the Undead - and she's completely taken with him. Also, apparently she's immune to vampires' powers as well.

The Rattrays, a local couple, lure Bill outside hinting that they will allow him to drink their blood, then try to drain him since vampire blood is now a drug of choice. Sookie manages to stop them, saving Bill - marking the beginning of their odd vampire/human relationship. Sookie learns a lot of things she's wondered about vampires (can they Do It?) but gets drawn into an underworld where Vampires, Fangbangers and other shady creatures lurk.

Women in Bon Temps are being killed, including a co-worker of Sookie's - and the small town sheriff decides it's either a vampire - possibly Bill - or Sookie's brother Jason. Sookie takes it upon herself to solve the crime so that the 2 most important men in her life will be left alone.

I'm not a big vampire-story fan, and to be honest I got a little confused in her world-building, about the "rules" (as it were) of the vampires, shape-shifters, etc. And Buddy ... uh ... well, either I missed where they specifically said who he was, or maybe they never say, letting you just imagine it. (yeah, I figured it out but it'd be a spoiler to say). That being said, I did enjoy it and may continue listening or reading the series. From early reviews, I may have to get the HBO series True Blood from Netflix when it's released (I just added it to the queue, but no release date has been given).

It's not really romance- I think the genre is Urban Fantasy, or paranormal mystery maybe? Anyway, it was really good, so 5 stars it is.


Cindy W said...

First one done!!!! You wanted that trophy!

aunt rowena said...

More than a trophy, I wanted to actually COMPLETE a challenge! It's my first!! (That AAR Top 100 Quest I'm on is looking grim...)