Grade: 2.5 stars out of 5
Summary: “Sookie Stackhouse is a small-time cocktail waitress in a small-town Louisiana. She’s quiet, keeps to herself, and doesn’t get out much. Not because of 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, and handsome—and Sookie can’t hear a word he’s thinking. He’s exactly the type 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 with a seriously creepy crowd, all suspected of—big surprise—murder. And when one of Sookie’s coworkers is killed, she fears she’s next….”
Review: When I first read the summary I cringed a bit and laughed.
The first thought that came to my head when I read Dead Until Dark was that the writing was just awful! I don’t know if the author was trying to mimic the Southern dialect to make Sookie more authentic or the editor of the book sucks at their job. There is a lot of odd word phrasing, missing words in sentences, extra words in sentences, some made up words in others, all of which I craved for some decent adjectives!
Here’s an example of a passage from the book that I detested:
“You can tell that I don’t get out much. And it’s not because I’m not pretty. I am. I’m blond and blue-eyed and twenty-five, and my legs are strong and my bosom is substantial, and I have a waspy waistline. I look good in the warm weather waitress outfit Sam picked for us: black shorts, white T, white socks, black Nikes.”This, my friends, was on page 1. Page freaking one! First off is “waspy” an actual word? My dictionary does not have this…word. And I do not trust Urban Dictionary as much as I trust to use Wikipedia when doing research papers. Secondly, how many “and”s can you count? Were they all really necessary? Finally, that entire quote left me blanching. When the summary mentioned that Sookie was pretty, I did not mind it much. When Sookie says that she’s pretty, I did. It just puts me off. And please, “bosom is substantial”, what kind of description is that? Blond, blue-eyed…wow, I can definitely picture Sookie in mind now.
So for the first few chapter of Dead Until Dark I had the odd sensation to rip the book page by page tossing each into a pit of trash can fire. Of course each burning would be completed with an occasional manically laughter with my hair whipping around me. Too bad my mom hid the lighter fluid…
It gets better on though trust me (or else the grade would have been less…much, much less). When the mystery aspect came up in the storyline I was able to forget some of the weaker characteristics of the book. Charlaine Harris gives the reader a motive, many suspects, hints, and all the gory details needed to solve a mystery. And hey, the writing gets a bit better as well!
I enjoy some of the smaller details that the author presented—the vampires, Sookie’s childhood, Bill’s life, and some twists. But I did have some problems with the “love-making” scenes. There was one part where they actually do it in the cemetery. Wow…hope you make your family members proud seeing as how they’re all buried there.
Overall: The reason why I’m still reading this series was because I was dared to. That says a lot does it not?
The quintessential vampiric pose. There's probably many more similar photos to this. One of which I remember Angelina Jolie doing. This is the cover that is on my copy of book, the newer edition influenced by the TV series.