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So anyway,
Because what the Net really needs is another person sharing his uninformed views
Book review: Dead Until Dark 
6th-Sep-2009 04:50 pm
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Everyone raves about the TV series True Blood but I haven't really got into torrenting and over here it's on a TV channel I don't have so I'll have to rent it when it comes out on DVD. In the meantime I thought I'd have a go at Charlaine Harris' novels, on which the series is based. Dead Until Dark is the first one, and it's quite fun, with some witty touches - I particularly liked Harris' tendency to give the vampires really ordinary names, a gag on the exotic names they're usually saddled with. Here the main vampires are called Bill and Eric, which is hardly "Lestat."

The book's set in Louisiana and it's interesting how there's little snatches inserted which suggest some of the inhabitants refuse to accept how the Civil War ended, and there's an undercurrent of racism that hasn't gone away, although for now this isn't made a big deal of. Some of the central ideas seem lifted straight from episodes of Buffy - lead character Sookie Stackhouse (well I guess if the vamps aren't going to have silly names...) can read minds and finds this debilitating, but she's relieved to find she can't read vampire minds. There's also a subculture of humans who get a sexual thrill out of being bitten. But Harris does have Sookie threaten to name her dog Buffy, so I guess she's acknowledging the influence.

The covers are a bit offputting, looking like cheesy paranormal romance novels, and to an extent this is what this is, and for me the book gets tedious when Sookie and Bill get together and there's several sex scenes in a row, but once that's out of the way it resolves itself into a fun little mystery. I think I'll give a couple of the other books a chance before moving on to the TV show.
Comments 
6th-Sep-2009 05:23 pm (UTC)
I've read most of the Sookie Stackhouse books and really enjoyed them. Not exactly complex but a lot better than many of the plethora of "comedy" novels in this genre.
Didn't know there was a TV series based on them though....might have to give that a go, what channel's it on??
6th-Sep-2009 09:17 pm (UTC)
FX, I think - it's been on for a few weeks now though. (You should read the lowculture previews that people apart from me write as well, you'd have known about it then.) From what I've seen about it, almost none of the main cast are actually American. And Bill was a vampire in Ultraviolet so a bit of typecasting there.

I was the other way round, I'd heard of True Blood ages ago although I hadn't seen it, and only recently found out it was based on a series of books.
6th-Sep-2009 06:01 pm (UTC)
True Blood is brilliant - Alan Ball production
You must get it on DVD when it comes out.
6th-Sep-2009 09:21 pm (UTC)
Yep that's the plan - I was thinking I might not bother with the rest of the books and just watch the TV show, but apparently they don't stick to the same storyline for long so I might go with both.

Good to see you back, was actually wondering where you'd got to. (Funnily enough I think of you whenever I see a certain drama school mentioned in theatre programmes.)
(Deleted comment)
6th-Sep-2009 11:37 pm (UTC)
Well not really, 'cause I ended up buying the book anyway.
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