May 10, 2013

Book Review: Dead Ever After

Dead Ever After
Sookie Stackhouse, Book 13
Charlaine Harris

Released: 07 May, 2013

Gollancz, Paperback, 352 p.
ISBN: 978-05750-9662-2

On the back....

Sookie Stackhouse has one last adventure in store.

Life has taken from her a waitress in Merlotte's Bar, Bon Temps, to part owner; from social outcast to the heart of her community; from a vampire's girlfriend to the wife of one of the most powerful vampires in the state.  She has survived explosions, revolutions and attempts on her life.

Sookie has endured betrayal, heartbreak and grief... and she has emerged a little stronger, a little wiser, every time.

But with life comes new trials...

The question is, in the end: who will love, who will live, and who will be dead ever after?

*** May contain Spoilers ****

So what did I think of this, the not so final installment of the Sookie Stackhouse series?  Having just finished it about an hour or so ago, I have to say that I like it.  I tried to stay away from all the other reviews so that it wouldn't influence my own thoughts on this book.  Now, looking at other reviews, I see that there are mixed opinions on the success of the final book.  All I can say is that I'm just glad that I finally have some closure in the whole Sookie/Eric, will they - won't they, quandary.

For me, I liked they way things were resolved with Eric.  He's been such a manipulative undead so-and-so for a long time now.  He's made his bed, and now he has to lie in it.   Although it was strange that he really has no presence in this title.  He only has one or two meetings with Sookie.  Strange, but I thought Ms. Harris would have an Eric laden finale.  However, the vamps were mostly in the background of this book.  This was a huge surprise.  No one - except for Bill - was speaking to Sookie.  Pam had a few words, and so did Karin, but that was it.  

Bill's presence however, was well executed.  There was none of the anger, sadness, manipulations, etc., that have been the broody trademarks we've come to look for.  Bill was his old self in this story.  Not overly solicitous, nor was he moody and distant.  He was the Bill that we saw in the earlier books, the one that was a good friend to Sookie.  Sam's role in DEA was not so much an unexpected twist for me, but a welcome surprise.  I've always thought that this should be the ending he had.  I can't wait to find out if they stay together (sorry, trying not to give away spoilers to those that haven't read DEA yet ;-D ).  There was a stage while reading the book that I thought Sam might be a little 'altered' thanks to Sookie's use of the cluviel dor in Deadlocked.  It would have made a nice twist, but I'm happy enough with the way the story unfurled.

Pam's promotion was great, and I'm glad that she would like to keep Sookie in her life.  The introduction of Karin was a tad unexpected, but then, those who get sent to guard Sookie's house are always unexpected.  I did wonder why we didn't get even a cameo from Bubba?   He wasn't even mentioned!  As far as I can remember, he's still alive... right?!

It was great that a lot of characters from previous books got a final look-in here.  Some we loved, and others we loved to hate.  There are more than a few suspects in the 'who want's Sookie dead' club.  And I was surprised to see Arlene back, even if it was briefly.  The real twist in the tale for me was Claude, and what he's is involved with.  I really did get a surprise when his role in the events of DEA were revealed.   

A great way to end what has been a fabulous, and much cherished, series.

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