Dead Until Dark: A Sookie Stackhouse Novel

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Penguin Group US, May 1, 2001 - Fiction - 304 pages
114 Reviews

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Sookie Stackhouse is just a small-time cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana. Until the vampire of her dreams walks into her life-and one of her coworkers checks out....Maybe having a vampire for a boyfriend isn't such a bright idea.

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User Review  - SuzyQ0965 - Borders

I have the entire series of books about Sookie Stackhouse. I love everyone of them and now have all my friends and family reading them. They are so very entertaining. Once you start reading them you ... Read full review

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Dead until Dark is the first book in the Sookie Stachhouse novels released by Charlaine Harris. I tend to be a horror/thriller/mystery reader but I figured since I read the 2nd one first in this series I might want to read the first so I can get the back story.
I will say it was an interesting and fast paced story. I find that a lot of times when romance is thrown together with horror or thriller it can go horribly wrong. One is usually overtaken by the other and there is no balance involved. I will say that this is not the case with the Sookie Stackhouse series as it stands. It not only is a whirl wind romance for Sookie and her vampire Bill there is more to the story which is a nice change. It was intertwined with the mystery of the story without being overbearing or the main focus of the book.
The character development was outstanding and the balance between all the characters was believable. Even though this is a fiction book it is important that the characters are believable. Without that key a story is just that, a story that doesn’t draw you in but keeps you on the outskirts and only mildly interested. This book gave enough information about each character and how they have met or interacted which is what made it believable. The murderer in the story was definitely a surprise which can be very hard to achieve, even some very well known writers can telegraph the killer in their books and not realize it. No writer is trying to give away the ending in the first few chapters and Harris achieved keeping the killer a secret until the end.

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About the author (2001)

Charlaine Harris, who has been writing mysteries for over twenty years, is a native of Mississippi. Born and raised in the Delta, she began training for her career as soon as she could hold a pencil. Though her early works consisted largely of poems about ghosts and (later) teenage angst, she began writing plays when she attended Rhodes College in Memphis, and graduated to books a few years later.

After publishing two stand-alone mysteries, Harris decided to establish a series. She began the lighthearted Aurora Teagarden books with Real Murders, which garnered an Agatha nomination.  Harris's protagonist, a diminutive Georgia librarian whose life never turns out quite the way she planned, kept Harris busy for several books, but finally Harris (and Aurora) grew restless.

The result of this restlessness was the much edgier Shakespeare series -- set not in England, but in rural Arkansas. The heroine of the Shakespeare books is Lily Bard, a tough and taciturn woman whose life has been permanently reshaped by a terrible crime and its consequences. In Shakespeare's Landlord, the first in the series, Lily is caught at a moment when the shell she's built around herself is just beginning to crack, and the books capture Lily's emotional re-entry into the world, while also being sound mysteries.

Harris's latest venture is a series about a telepathic barmaid in southern Louisiana. The first book in the series, Dead Until Dark, won the Anthony for best paperback mystery of 2001. Each book about Sookie Stackhouse (and her dealings with vampires and werewolves and other creatures of the night) has gathered more readers to enjoy the books' unique blend of mystery, humor, romance, and the supernatural. The Sookie books are also being read in Japan, Spain, Greece, and Great Britain.

In addition to her work as a writer, Harris is married and the mother to three children. A former weight lifter and karate student, she is an avid reader and cinemaphile. She is a member of the vestry of St. James Episcopal Church.

Harris is a member of the Mystery Writers of America and the American Crime Writers League. She is a member of the board of Sisters in Crime, and alternates with Joan Hess as president of the Arkansas Mystery Writers Alliance. © 2004 Charlaine Harris

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