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Thursday, May 16, 2013

How to End A Series - A Book Review of Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris


Like many of the other readers, I have never written a book review before but after sitting on this for a week I really just want to say a few things. No, I am not a published author, but I do write and when an amazing writer and storyteller like Charlaine Harris does things in a fantastic series that I have been TORN apart for doing, I just feel obligated to warn other readers.

THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS.

Ok, first this is not a review about the fact that I did not like the fact that Sookie didn't end up with Eric. To be honest, I feel the books set us up for this to be a childish fantasy of hers and not a long term relationship that Sookie began to crave as the years went by. In fact, I have been saying same for about six or seven books now and I do thing the way their relationship is portrayed in the show does not give their relationship in the books justice.

First, the writing. It is dismal and choppy. It was so bad that I went to my shelf and got the last four books to skim and see if maybe over the years of reading that I missed something in her style that was just bothering me this time around. Nope. This volume seems to be rushed, as if she just wanted it done and over with, with no real editing for flow. Yes, it is told from Sookie's POV, but that doesn't mean the "bad guy" scenes should be equally as choppy since they are told from third person. They were, however, and it was distracting and made me want to skim the scenes.

Which brings me to the bad guys...WHAT THE HECK?!? I love this series, not just for the romance, but the intrigue, the challenges Sookie faces outside of her disaster of a live life. It was as if she couldn't think of anything else to come up with, so she went back through her character charts and was like, oh Claude didn't die, or Steve Newlin...let's use them. That might have worked, especially the Claude post-torture angle, but the story of how the baddies came after her was so convoluted that even when Claude gets his big monologue in the end even HE admits it makes no sense! It's akin to when Christina on Grey's Anatomy said "Well we've been in everything else, why not a plane crash?". I KNOW this is a literary tactic, but sometimes, it doesn't give you the free pass you want, it just makes the whole idea look that much more stupid. I would have to give a negative star to the villain in this volume.

The romance. Gonna say it, I am and always have been TEAM SAM. I thought the lead up to Sam and Sookie together was wonderful except for TWO things.

1. When Sookie says that she has always loved him but afraid to say. NO.SHE.HASN'T. Did you read your own books? I do think that she has always loved him, always, but I think it would have been best if Sookie had a realization rather that acting like she'd been playing a part all along. An "Oh wow," scene would have been more consistant with the character, maybe even flashing back to the entire time they had known one another.

2. Sam accepts Sookie's 'taking her time' as long as they can continue to have 'hot sex.' What the hell!? With the ONE line, you completely destroyed the Sam character. Sam was her match because there was a real connection there, but to agree to that diminishes the entirty of their relationship. I am NOT a prude, at all, but love is love and sex is sex and while they mix pure love overcomes everything and realizes the difference. Think I've read too many book? Nope, I LIVE a real love and that is not how it works.

And then there is the supporting cast. First, the Quinn character never made any sense, was flat, and just someone for her to sleep with. So he comes back, makes no good sense, helps in no needed way and leaves. OK...Eric, wow, what happened there? I didn't need or expect them together but he was neutered SUPER fast and it just made no sense. Now, if we were to get an Eric book or and Eric POV to learn he had a plan, fine, but nothing. I don't need him with Sookie, I don't but he just died. Bill became, as Sookie herself put it, the friendly neighbor and after all of that power in his little Vampire Database thingy he was just the guy across the cemetery again. In fact, we got more resolution for Mr. C and his demon niece than ANY Of the characters we have come to love. Even Pam, who gets promoted to sheriff, was barely mentioned after being pretty much Sookie's closest friend for AGES.

That is probably not all but I am kind of crushed. No Sookie, you are not being you if you want to have some Sam on the side. No, you are not being you by casting aside all of those supernatural people who have nearly DIED for you. You just were tired of telling the story, but we deserved a better ending.

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