First of all, let me preface this book review with a quick little disclaimer. I heart vampires and vampire stories. I have a bit of an (unhealthy?) obsession with these creatures of the night. I'm not sure why, but I do. That being said, I shall proceed.
Dead Until Dark is the first in the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. I don't know why I'm just now reading these - what with my obsession with vampires and all. But I guess I was a little wary of another vampire series. I tried reading that series by Laurell K Hamilton and just wasn't able to get into them. And I enjoyed Twilight to an extent but had issues with Bella and Meyers kind of jumped the shark with the last book. So I held off on this series, but after looking for something quick, easy and fun to read, these were suggested to me (my friends know of my vampire penchant) and I've fallen in love.
But I digress. As I was saying, Dead Until Dark is the first of a series. We are introduced to Sookie Stackhouse from Bon Temps, Louisana and she has a special ability to hear people's thoughts, though she tries to block them out as much as possible. She's a waitress at a local bar and is extremely excited when they get their first vampire customer. See, vampires are "out of the closet" in this series - they are integrated with humans for the most part, but a vampire in Bon Temps is a pretty exciting deal considering how small the town is.
Sookie quickly realizes that this vampire, Bill Compton, is special - different - she can't hear his thoughts! And he realizes that she's not like most humans. So begins the love story. But it's not all sex and lame romantic stuff. No, there's murder and humour and mystery and a cameo by a supposed dead "King" (which made me laugh hysterically)...it's just a damn good story. Well, a damn good story for someone who hasn't read an actual book in almost 9 months at any rate. Plus? I actually like the heroine of this story. This is rarity with me but Sookie rocks. She has her flaws (as any good protagonist does) but she more than makes up for them.
READ THIS BOOK. Then, go watch the HBO series True Blood. The plot of season 1 basically follows this first book...loosely. And for the first time, I actually enjoyed both the book and the TV adaptation - even though the TV series has quite a bit of differences than the book I never once uttered "that didn't happen in the book!" And if you don't fall in love with Sookie and Bill (seriously, how could you not?) and all the others of Bon Temps then...well then I'm just sorry for you. But if you tire of Twilight's immaturity and Edwards creepiness and Bella's annoyance and want some good vampire stories - read this now.