Thursday, 2 May 2013

The Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris

Yes, continuing with the vampire theme. Charlaine Harris' books about supernaturals in the fictional town of Bon Temps in Louisiana is like a fairy tale (also including faries) and a lot of other creatures like vampires, shapeshifters, werewolves (of dogs or tigers or panthers or....) meanads and a lot of other things you have never heard about. In the centre of all this attention is telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse. Her boring life changes dramatically when she falls in love with Vampire Bill. This is in a time when vampires have come out into the open and have more or less the same rights as humans. From now on her life is never boring. She herself, has a little bit of fairy blood which attracts vampires and other supernaturals. With her specific telepathic gift (or curse as she sees it herself) she is hunted by various groups who need her to read the mind of people.

The books are the base for the successful TV series "True Blood". The series is far more juicy than the books. Screen writers are often straying away from the original story and so it is here as well. However, the books are enjoyable in themselves but are written entirely from a Sookie perspective. In the TV series you follow more in details also the persons surrounding Sookie which works very well for TV.

The books are a real easy read, each book around 200 pages. Each book has a different adventure but Sooki's story develops along the line and so does she. I have not read a lot of books that are part of a series but I am beginning to like it. Of course it has to be an exiting and appealing story. Problem is that they are difficult to put down and since there is a developing story you are stuck because you want to know what will happen. Soap operas! Yes, I guess this is the same.

I am lucky to just have discovered these books. The first one in the series came in 2001 and the other 12 came, I guess, once a year. I had just finished book number 12 a couple of days before the release of the 13th and last book. It has been anticipated a lot by fans and the question was who Sookie would choose in the end.

For one reason I don't really understand why the last book had a slightly different approach as the other books. All books have been written in the first narrative (Sookie). In the last book you have two or three other narratives and it does not seem necessary. Furthermore, some of the characters were a little bit out of tune considering earlier books. I, like a lot of other people if you read comments from the fans, did not like the ending. (more comments here - - under Dead Ever After discussion points).

Charlaine Harris says that she stuck to the ending she had anticipated all along. This is really brave since the series is so popular and it has a real faithful fan club who has their own idea of how things should turn out. I would have wanted another ending. It did not work at all for me. I never really anticipated that she would go for this person and it felt all wrong. Logically, (spoiler here so don't read further if you don't want to know the end) she would go for a human rather than a supernatural. What kind of future would she have with a vampire? However, there would have been other human characters that would have been more 'natural' to choose!

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