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Charlaine Harris – Dead Ever After

September 20, 2013

71. Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris (2013)
Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 13

Read my review of book:
1. Dead Until Dark
2. Living Dead in Dallas
3. Club Dead
4. Dead to the World
5. Dead as a Doornail
6. Definitely Dead
7. All Together Dead
8. From Dead to Worse
9. Dead and Gone
10. Dead in the Family
11. Dead Reckoning
12. Deadlocked
Short Stories. A Touch of Dead

Length: 338 pages
Genre: Urban (well, technically Rural) Fantasy

Started: 03 September 2013
Finished: 07 September 2013

Where did it come from? The library.
Why do I have it? Oh, I’m a completist.

Here’s a surprise for
you: Someone is out to get
Sookie. Shocking, right?

Summary: Sookie is used to having enemies, but she’s already got a lot on her plate right at the moment without dealing with any more plots against her. She used the magic power of the cluviel dor to save Sam’s life, but now he’s acting all strange, and her vampire boyfriend Eric is growing more and more distant. And then to make things worse, Arlene, who has been released from prison (where she was serving time for attempting to murder Sookie), returns to Merlotte’s with the nerve to ask Sookie for a job. Sookie refuses, of course, which makes things look all the worse when Arlene winds up dead in Merlotte’s dumpster with one of Sookie’s scarves around her neck. Now she has to face murder charges, figure out who is attempting to frame her, try to resolve things with Eric, shake Sam out of his funk, and deal with all of her other supernatural friends and enemies if she ever has a hope of having a normal life – as normal as life for a telepathic part-fairy can be, anyways.

Review: I have not been super-happy with the direction this series has taken over the past few books. The early books in the series were fun, silly, escapist guilty pleasure reads. But by about book 9 (or maybe earlier?), they started feeling scattered, a little repetitive, and a little labored, like they’d lost some of the spark that made them so much fun in the first place. This book is ostensibly the last one in the series (although of course there’s still After Dead coming out, because gods forbid Harris’s publishers just let things lie when there is still money to be made), and it was admittedly better than some of the ones that came before it. But my overall impression was “eh, y’know… fine.” It was fine. It wasn’t great. It wasn’t terrible. It did a good job wrapping up all of the many, many plot threads established in the earlier books, in a way that felt mostly pretty organic to the story. (Less organic was the constant parade of familiar characters who show up for a few pages for no good reason whatsoever. I mean, I like Quinn and all, but did he add anything to the story?) The prose was not exactly the smoothest I’ve ever read, but at least avoided some of the howlingly awful lines of some of Harris’s earlier books. But the story never really regained the spark of the early books, and the “who’s trying to kill Sookie this week?” plot just felt tired. It was a decent ending to the series, but it’s also an ending that I was glad to finally see arrive. 3 out of 5 stars.

Recommendation: If you’ve read the rest of the books in the series: you may as well. If not: the first few books are a bunch of fun, although the series as a whole starts tapering off long before it ends… and it doesn’t exactly end with a bang.

This Review on LibraryThing | This Book on LibraryThing | This Book on Amazon

Other Reviews: Love Vampires, Musings of a Bookish Kitty, Sarah Reads Too Much, and many more at the Book Blogs Search Engine.
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First Line: The New Orleans businessman, whose gray hair put him in his fifties, was accompanied by his much younger and taller bodyguard/chauffeur on the night he met the devil in the French Quarter.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 20, 2013 10:49 am

    I read the first one and didn’t love it so I probably won’t go back to the series.

  2. September 20, 2013 11:56 am

    I could basically copy your review and claim it for myself because you say everything I said about it. I read the last few books because I needed closure, not because I was actually enjoying them anymore. And yes, it was a parade of characters as if they were making their bows and curtain call and for no other reason. I was a champion for Quinn all along. I know I’m supposed to be rooting for Eric, but I thought Quinn was the best for Sookie all along and I thought her reasons for breaking up with him were stupid. When I heard the rumors that Eric wasn’t going to be Sookies’ one true love, I had a feeling it was going to be Sam. Sam makes sense, but I was never a fan of his as far as being anything more than just a very good friend for Sookie, and although they had sparks in the past, I didn’t think there was enough there to justify him being the final man in Sookie’s life. Well, maybe there was, but I just never connected to Sam in that way as a reader.
    Good review. I totally agree.

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