Review by Ner:
Dead Until Dark
Author: Charlaine Harris
Release Date: January 1st, 2001
Pages: 326 (Paperback)
Genre: Vampires | UF | Paranormal
Series: Sookie Stackhouse #1
Read: from April 24 to 28, 2014
Source & Shelf: Gift | Own
ISBN: 9780575089365 (Paperback)
Sookie Stackhouse is a small-time cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana. She’s quiet, keeps to herself, and doesn’t get out much. Not because she’s not pretty. She is. It’s just that, well, Sookie has this sort of “disability.” She can read minds. And that doesn’t make her too dateable. And then along comes Bill. He’s tall, dark, handsome – and Sookie can’t ‘hear’ a word he’s thinking. He’s exactly the kind of guy she’s been waiting for all her life.
But Bill has a disability of his own: He’s a vampire. Worse than that, hangs with a seriously creepy crowd, with a reputation for trouble – of the murderous kind.
And when one of Sookie’s colleagues is killed, she begins to fear she’ll be next …
*This review might contain spoilers!*
When I began reading this book I was expecting to not even be able to finish it. Don’t ask me why, I just thought this wasn’t going to be my type of book (yah, despite the vampires which I love!!!).
Okay, maybe the reason was because I couldn’t even finish the first season of the HBO series based on this book and saga. But I kicked myself really hard and said: “you need to keep an open mind and you can’t dismiss a book based on its adaptation”!
Because, let’s face it, the books are always better, right? So, I tried to ignore the already-in-my-mind-hard-to-delete-now visual idea I had and ended up really, but really really enjoying this book.
Like, a LOT!!!!!
Dead Until Dark is told by Sookie Stackhouse, a waitress with a particular gift: she can read peoples’ minds. But there is only one “person” she can’t even hear a single whisper: the vampire Bill. While Sookie and Bill discover new feelings and whatnot, a murderer is killing off Sookie’s friends and terrifying Bon Temps.
One of the reason I enjoyed this book that much was Sookie’s great character. Although she’s 25 years-old and a little naive and innocent, she’s someone you don’t mind knowing a little bit more and appreciate her sense of humour. Plus, despite the fact that she is, sometimes, always being saved, she’s also an independent young woman. I like her!
As for the vampire Bill Compton… well, he’s exactly the sort of vampire we are used to. And the typical vampire that makes the folklore stories alive. She’s charming, disarming, mysterious, sexy and dangerous. What more can we ask for in a fang-guy? Though in the beginning I found him lacking a bit of personality, when he became the creature of the night and allowed his fangs to show, oh yeah, he was amazing!!
Having seen a few episodes of the first season, I already knew Sookie’s brother, Jason, though I guess I was expecting a bit more of him in the book. Maybe I was expecting a more detailed relationship between him and Sookie, the brotherly bound that, if I remember correctly, makes a few appearances in the show. He’s character wasn’t that big in the book whereas in the series he has a major role. I’m hoping we’ll see a lot more of him in the upcoming twelve books in the saga.
The only reason I didn’t rated this book higher in the scale were the awkward sex scenes between Sookie and Bill.
Sure, they weren’t THAT explicit (seriously, I’ve read worst) but knowing that Sookie was a virgin waiting for the right kind of guy to come and then becoming something addicted to it in just a few days didn’t felt right. Especially the sharing Bill’s blood thing… I mean, I’m all for sharing blood (wow, that sounds weird!) but there was a specific moment in the book that Bill gives Sookie his blood that was like “WHAT THE HECK???”
The other thing that didn’t made that sense to me was Adele’s death. Sookie lost her grandmother and I didn’t felt her grief, her sorrow. Also, the fact that the virginity mentioned on the previous paragraph was taken right after this particular death. I found that not only awkward but also slightly obnoxious.
Still, those were the only things I had against it and the reasons I only rated this book 4 cups.
As for the murderer… well, I had been previously spoiled due to the TV-series but it was still a great and big mystery that caught me by surprise. There wasn’t a single clue that I could notice throughout the book that would give away the true identity of the killer. And for that, I take my hat off to Charlaine Harris. I really liked the mystery!
Overall I loved everything (almost) about this book. I loved meeting the characters, Bon Temps, the mystery and this new noir vampiric world through Sookie’s eyes and mind.
And I surely can’t wait to read more and continue this series – I want to know more about Eric who is a character that intrigues me… and Pam – and, perhaps (who knows), I might re-watch the series.