Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
Genre: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Series: Sookie Stackhouse, Southern Vampire
Paranormal Element: Vampires
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The power house that is Charlaine Harris might not need much introduction to most of my readers, but for those of you that have snubbed your nose to the popularity that is the Sookie Stackhouse series…I ask you why? Popularity does not necessarily mean crap. It means that a lot of people like it, and there is a reason. The books are great. Erase the monstrosity that is the HBO series from your mind…the books and the show might have characters with the same names, but frankly they are two totally different beasts. I sometimes I wish I can go back, go back and read these for the first time, because the experience of introducing myself to Sookie, Bill, Eric, well it is just one of those rare book moments..when you know you’ve found some new playmates.

Sookie Stackhouse, is a small town cocktail waitress that dreams of a little excitement in her life. Treated like a freak for her odd behavior and her inexplicable ability to read minds, her friends and neighbors know something is off about her and hold her at arms length, thinking she might be a little mentally challenged. Hooking up with Bon Temps only vampire resident doesn’t do much for her reputation either. When one of her coworkers shows up on the wrong side of dead, prejudices start to arise and Sookie might just be next on the killers list.

Harris’ writing style is quirky, fun and light. Her books have a dark flavor conveyed in a cotton candy voice. The subject matter is murderers, vampires and deep seated prejudice but her tone keeps the story flowing and the reader involved, it is truly a gem to read. Her characters are well formed and you find an instant affinity towards them. Even the most vile of her characters that are introduced you can understand. There is a reason why book after book of this series tops the charts.

Sookie is a powerhouse of her own. She is strong willed, assertive and amusing. She makes a ton of mistakes, but her actions are things you can relate too, instead of leaving you scratching your head. At first you think she’s a bit daft, or missing a few slices of cheese from her cracker…but you soon realize that this isn’t true at all and the transition is exceptional.

Harris embraces the small-town mentality and brings to life Louisiana life so well that I really believe that I might run into one of her characters on the streets of New Orleans one day.  This is a great series and it is recommended that you start at this book instead of skipping ahead. Have fun and read them up, for there are a few of them!

This is an adult read, their is a bit of violence, a bit of language and a bit of sexual fun. Fans of the Anita Blake Series and Rachel Morgan Series should enjoy.