L.E.Olteano 's Reviews > Living Dead in Dallas

Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris
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it was amazing
bookshelves: favorites, blog-review, parajunkee-s-vampire-challenge-2011

Originally posted at Butterfly-o-Meter Books on Aug 6 2011:

Full series review for Books #1-11, from which:

Okay…okay, this is going to be the sort of review I don’t generally do. The spoiler-y, ranting review; if you don’t know the sort, you will when I’ll be done with it. If you haven’t read all the 11 books until now, you might want to skip over this review. I’m sorry, but I can’t help it! *sigh*

I have chosen to speak of the whole package of novels published up to date in the series, instead of going on a book by book case, since I’ve read them all this week and not one at a time, year by year. I see a pattern here…the next one will be published in May next year, won’t it? All of them seem to be published beginning of May, each year, since 2001. I tip my hat to anyone that had so much strength to wait, time after time, for the new novel to be published. I’ve been putting off reading the novels for years already, waiting for the last one to be published before I’d buy them all and read them in one go. Obviously, as it turns out, I was only able to put it off for so long, and last week I fell in the vampire trap.

Also, I’m one of those that have seen the show first, and then read the books. It may be suspected of me that my likes and dislikes for the books might have been influenced by the TV series cast – such an observation would be pertinent, perhaps. But aside putting on each character from the show a really clear face for the books, I don’t really think it influenced me much.

Action-wise, I think all of the novels so far are on the awesome side. The pace, of course, differs from one novel to the other; one of the slower paced is Book 11, I believe. It’s also the one that gave me some frustrating tangent ideas about the series coming to an end, but I’ll get into that a bit later.
As far as plotting, scheming, and generally convoluted plans go, all of the books were pretty well packed. What I like the most of Charlaine Harris‘s world are the vampires, and the vampire society, if we can call it that. They’re quite different one from the other, but keep a sum of traits well enough to set them well apart other species of the Harris world. Of all the species, I like the humans the least, I must admit. Not that she hasn’t written them well, she has, in fact she has written them so well, that I dislike them most of the time – that’s a reaction I generally have for real people only.
The shifters, faes and vampires make a really interesting crowd. Of course, they’ll be disrespectful with one another, hold grudges, act all nasty, and in this Harris‘s beings hold a horribly human streak, no matter how supernatural they seem to be.
The plot thickens all the time, but it retains a certain density above which it doesn’t really seem to go. After a few of the novels, I found whatever the twists and turns were, and there are enough of them each and every time, there’s a sort of constant beat to it, and a chorus of sorts, that doesn’t suffer drastic change. I find that comforting, not disappointing. The author has built her world, and she envisions all sorts of things happening in it; the game of sum 0 is one of the things that really makes it all feel so beautifully real, and sort of addictive.

Now, as far as my favorites go, Sookie Stackhouse is not on the list. I disliked her in the TV show, and I dislike her in the books. I don’t hate her, but I dislike her. There’s something about her thought process that just irks me; maybe it’s the hypocritical take on things that she just refuses to evolve out of; Sookie seems to me like the rather simple minded, prejudiced sort, deep down inside. Of course, that only makes her more real. I’m not blaming her for it, she’s a simple woman, though with a very special gift, from a relatively simple world, for the major part of her life. Then all sorts of heaven and hell break loose on her, and considering it all, I think she copes quite well.
What I sort of dislike about her is the fact that she seems to have grown to understand and/or sort of accept some things, and then, a bit later, she’s shocked by it again, and goes through the denial stage, and then struggles with it again, and then accepts/understands it, and then we go all through it…again! It’s a bit too unstable for my personal liking. And when it’s met with the eternal pragmatism of the vampires around her, it sticks out all the more, fact that is, I am sure, thoroughly intentional, but I’ll elaborate on that a bit later.
Generally speaking, I don’t agree with Sookie’s thinking a lot of the time, and I don’t like her choices, but I’d go along for the ride for one simple reason: no matter how irksome Sookie Stackhouse may be, there’s a lot of interesting characters mingling in her crowd.

The vampires are the masterpiece bit of the whole series; of course, I’d think so, I’ve been fascinated with the notion since I was 7 yo. Charlaine Harris‘s vampires are nothing short of spectacular, really showing off their cultural diversity and the many changes in mentality and character-patterns all through history.

Ah, anyways, all in all, I really do recommend the series; the characters are well written, whether you’ll like some of them or not, the plot is rich with action of all kinds (fu~fu), there’s all sorts of creatures and adventures awaiting you, with a healthy dose of humor and some angsty-feel to top it off.
If you’re thinking, “No point in reading the books, I’m watching the TV show!”, you’re sorely mistaken, there are enough differences between them to make the stories relatives, but not identical twins So go ahead and read them, we’ll fidget together about the upcoming book in the series, and we’ll fangirl over Eric together too!!
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Reading Progress

July 31, 2011 – Shelved
August 25, 2011 – Shelved as: favorites
September 21, 2011 – Shelved as: blog-review
September 23, 2011 – Shelved as: parajunkee-s-vampire-challenge-2011
Started Reading
August 1, 2013 – Finished Reading

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