Saturday, January 28, 2012

Review: Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

Book Title/Author:Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
Publisher/Year Published:May 2001 by Ace (first published in January 2001)
Where I got it: The library
Rating: 3/5 stars

Challenges:The January entry for the TBR Pile Challenge

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 with a bad reputation. He hangs out with a seriously creepy crowd, all suspected of -- big surprise -- murder. And when one of Sookie's co-workers is killed, she fears she's next.
I am going to start this review off by getting this out of the way. I have never seen True Blood, a TV series on I don't even know what channel that I hear is 'loosely' based on this book series. I don't even know what the characters look like, or if I did I am not sure who is suppose to be who or if I am even mixing up vampire television shows.

The point with leading off with this is that I was able to experience Dead Until Dark unscathed and not judging based on seeing a different medium.

I knew that this was set in the South and had vampires in it. Well we find out soon that vampires are not just in this world but are accepted into society (with some prejudices to overcome of course). Quite an interesting concept which isnt the normal twist that you see in vampire lore.

The story itself was pretty interesting in that it played off of this concept quite heavily. We see vampires trying to integrate themselves and others trying to stay as separate as possible. A main point of the novel is our main vampire, Bill, which by the way is an awesome vampire name, trying to live with the humans. It is actually quite interesting and something I almost wanted to see more than the romance. Because, yes that is there too.

So outside of that the plot is rather interesting. There is a mystery murderer running around. It's a pretty decent story. I extremely loved all of the references to the early 2000s. I don't know if it was a detriment, per say, but it does date the story. For instance, there were times before I checked the publication date where I thought, why isn't he just calling her on her cell. Well, silly, those were not that popular yet. Hard to believe.

The characters were alright, decently well rounded, and overall enjoyable. I did feel like Sookie was a little annoying at times and that clothing was mentioned overmuch. But Bill and Sookie and the host of secondary characters were fleshed out (ha pun) and ... well enjoyable.

I keep using that word, because that is what it was for me. Enjoyable. I didnt overly love it and I didn't overly hate it. The story was good, the characters were good, the setting was good; I am not sure if there is much more to say.

Will I read more of the series? Maybe. I am definitely not going to rule it out. Will I be making a mad dash to Netflix to watch True Blood? Eh. Probably not.

It's worth a read if you are interested in vampires and a time so close to our own, yet without cell phones :)


  1. I actually got into reading the books after I started watching True Blood on HBO the first season. As the TV series progresses each season, there is less and less similarities to the books. I think I got about five books in, and will probably read more once I'm in the mood for vampires again:) I still watch the show each summer, and it doesn't hurt that Alexander Skarsgaard is some pretty eye candy. Sigh, I love me a pretty blond Swedish man:)
    Oh, and I am reading "The Duke and I" right now, about halfway through, and I'm enjoying it immensely. Thanks again for the recs, and I plan on reading more historical romance in the future for sure.

    1. Isn't that just how TV series based on books usually go? The same happened with Dexter. I thought the best season was the one that stuck close to the book.

      It is super easy to get vampired out these days! Vampire stories are everywhere!

      I am so glad you are loving the Duke and I! Such a fun book. It makes me want to go back and read it again.

      Thanks for stopping by and letting me know :)


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