While my affection for Sookie Stackhouse remains firm, my affection for the Sookie Stackhouse series just might be waning.
Frankly, when an author publishes roughly one book a year in a beloved series, I don’t think it’s too much to expect for there to be some kind of major moves forward for the character in each entry. Though I’ve started to feel some twinges of ennui prior to this book, Definitely Dead feels decidedly like a placeholder in which nothing much happens.
The plot, such as it is, involves Sookie with the vampire queen of Louisiana and her minions and, since the jacket copy gives it away, a new love interest. That new man would be Quinn, a shapeshifter who makes a living traveling from town to town as sort of a paranormal event planner. There’s also an ongoing tussle between Sookie, vampire sheriff Eric, and the vampire queen over just whose entourage Sookie will be a part of at an upcoming vampire confab.
Quite honestly, that’s about it. There are a few vampire attacks, some cool new witch characters, and cameo (or maybe a bit more than that) appearances from bar owner Sam, Sookie’s brother, and a few of the other denizens of Sookie’s small Louisiana town.
As for Quinn, he’s an interesting character who shapeshifts rather dramatically into a weretiger over the course of the book. The vampire queen is regal enough. And the bad weres and vampires are all suitably bad. Sort of bland, but bad enough, I suppose.
And then after all the desultory nature of the goings-on here, there is a none-too-subtle set up for the next book in which – you guessed it – that vampire confab will obviously take place.
In case you can’t tell, color me more than disappointed.
By the end of the story, very little has changed in Sookie’s life and all the adventures – such as they were – might as well not have happened. Okay, there are a few developments on the love front, but something tells me that this isn’t …well, anything permanent.
So where do we end up here? Sad to say, despite my continuing fascination with Sookie, Definitely Dead is ultimately a very forgettable book and one the series could have well done without. And after all the foreplay in this book, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the big vampire confab in the next lives up to all the hype.