Book Reviews

Book Review: Living Dead in Dallas, by Charlaine Harris. (Book 2 in the Sookie Stackhouse series 2002).

The first book Dead Until Dark, ended with Sookie surviving a series of murders in her home town Bon Temp, which were committed by Arelene’s (co-worker at Merlotte’s and friend) on again off again boyfriend Rene. She is battered and bruised but alive. She also finds out that her should have been savior, boyfriend Vampire Bill Compton had gone to a regional political meeting to campaigned for a higher position to rival that of Eric Northman, the “Sherrif of Area 5″. Eric, along with Pam are from neighboring Sheverport and Eric is seen by Sookie as his “Boss”.

This book, Living Dead in Dallas, authored by Charlaine Harris, begins with Sookie bruised, but back at work, and trying to get on with her stranger than average life. However this “normalcy” doesn’t extend far into the first chapter! The cook at Merlotte’s Lafayette, is found dead in Andy Belefluer’s car, and goes from bad to worse when Bill is summoned by Eric to assist Vampires in Dallas find a missing nest brother. Sookie did make a promise to use her gift to help her new-found “friends” freely (a vital mistake in the last novel) and is now at liberty to follow through. However, this pays a toll on the Sookie and Bill love affair, as things turn sour and Sookie returns home after their trip alone.

When she arrives home there is still the issue of what happened to poor Lafayette. Determined to help Andy, Sookie asks Eric to accompany her to a “sex party” so she can use her gift to listen in on people’s thoughts. Not only do they reveal the murderer and provide an offering to a Maynard which just happened to demand respect right when things were already difficult, but Sookie also finds that she could be a part of a possible love triangle, and with Eric of all human and supernatural beings!.
What a whirlwind of events! And that isn’t all that happens. Charlaine Harris has packed this novel so full of action that it’s almost difficult to keep up. The reader often feels sorry for Sookie, as she goes through physical and emotional trials, all for the love of her Vampire. Not to mention the numerous near death experiences by various assailants, including a religious cult! And where did all this hard work get her? Alone and forced to ask a favour from a Vampire who would do anything to climb between the sheets with her. I don’t think anyone would blame Sookie if she packed her bags and headed for the proverbial hills. Bon Temps and anywhere with Vampire interest doesn’t seem safe. But even so, the risk still seems exciting.

Even though these events are all way out of the ballpark, Charlaine Harris has discovered a way to tell the story with truth and conviction from the characters point of view. Sookie Stackhouse does live in a world of Vampires and the author has taken the readers on a “sky-dive” of adventures. I think she has really created something special. I love it. The story line is so fun and it runs together like clock work.
My rating for this book is 8/10. Fabulous series so far and lots of openings for more to follow. Even though plot is very far-fetched, those who don’t ordinarily like books with a supernatural taste, would still get a kick out of this series. Recommend for ages 15 years and older.


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