Reviewed by JenIf you’ve learned everything you know about Sookie Stackhouse from watching True Blood, you are missing out in a big way. Yeah, yeah, there is definitely something to be said about the joys of watching Alexander Skarsgard brood and wear muscle shirts. But the books put the tv series to shame. The biggest difference is that these books are all first-person Sookie. Everything is about her and the world from her perspective. (Most of the more ridiculous subplots of the series don’t even exist in the books.)
Sookie is a waitress in small town in northern Louisiana. She can read minds and it’s a curse that has plagued her for her entire life. It has isolated her and prevented her from ever developing real relationships… until she meets Bill. He is a vampire; his kind has just “come out” to the world. And when she is with him, there is no noise… just peace and silence. Their relationship kicks off when she saves his life from a wayward couple, planning to drain him and sell his blood as a drug. Not long after she rescues him, he ends up doing the same for her, when the couple returns to retaliate.
The relationship between Bill and Sookie develops quickly. (There are definitely some sexy scenes between the two that can get your blood racing, but nothing likely to make you blush if you’re reading in public.) But there is much more to the story than their relationship. Women are being murdered in their small town of Bon Temps. The victims all seem to have ties to vampires –and eventually, the murders hit very close to home for our heroine. There is action and suspense –and a great element of surprise when the killer is finally revealed.
Sookie is a likeable lead… a sweet country girl who is often underestimated. We see Bill through her eyes as this dashing, sexy, larger-than-life guy, who straddles the line between man and monster. There is a great supporting cast, lead by her boss Sam, her slutty brother Jason (who, despite his portrayal on tv, is not a complete idiot,) and the enigmatic Viking vampire Eric. This first installment really only gives us a peek into the supernatural world that will eventually be revealed as the series progresses. But it’s a great start. It’s fun and fantastic series for any fan of the Urban Fantasy genre. 4 1/2 stars
Labels: by Jen, Charlaine Harris, Shifters, Urban Fantasy, Vampires