Thursday, May 3, 2012
Deadlocked (Sookie Stackhouse, #12)
Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
A fair warning: this review contains mild spoilers because writing my rant without them was next to impossible. Proceed at your own risk.
The Sookie Stackhouse series is dying a slow and painful death. Everybody knows it. Charlaine Harris knows it. She knew it even before she signed the deal for the last three books. What’s more, everyone who’s been following the series closely can pretty much tell when she stopped caring. What started off as entertaining and steaming hot (albeit poorly written), is now similar to a diseased and dehydrated animal, just waiting to be crushed by an oncoming car.
So now that we’re here, mourning, let’s make a list of Charlaine Harris’s sins, shall we?
• She wrote no less than ten books going in one direction, only to change course rapidly and unexpectedly in book eleven, thus disappointing countless fans all over the world.
• She created one of the hottest, most intriguing male characters in urban fantasy (and in general, ahem), and then she turned him into a monster I wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. Oh my. No cookies for you, Charlaine.
• Every alpha male that ever showed up in the series was (and is) attracted to Sookie. While I may believe that she’s pretty and likable, I fail to see what makes her quite so special. The list is pretty long: Bill, Quinn, Alcide, Sam, Eric and many others, including her cousin and her great-uncle – barf. Also, once they fall in love with her, they never stop pining after her. Never. She ruins them for all other women.
• Harris’s overly simplistic writing didn’t bother me back when her books were actually entertaining, but now that her plots are getting weaker with each book, her writing weaknesses are also showing a lot more than before.
• She is prone to describing ridiculously meaningless details of her heroine’s everyday life. Case in point: Sookie spends exactly 10% of Deadlocked filling out IRS forms, and another 5% making sweet potato pie. I kid you not. At least now I have the recipe.
• Sam. It’s pretty clear by now that Sookie is going to end up with him. He is the guy who’d failed to notice that he was dating a homicidal maniac (she wasn’t as secretive as all that) until a completely random stranger warned him about it. In my opinion, Sam needs to grow a spine before he becomes a serious love interest, and I don’t see that happening.
• In one of her many interviews, Harris said that the bond between Sookie and Eric is her biggest regret. The way she chose to get rid of that bond was ridiculous at best.
• Faeries. I don’t think I need to elaborate. Everything went downhill when Sookie’s heritage was discovered. Her great-great-grandfather freaks her out, she describes him as both creepy and scary, she saw him no more than five times total, and yet she insists that she loves him. Because he’s beautiful. And a prince. Duh.
• Monkey sex and ice packs. Enough said.
This was my very first urban fantasy series. It’s what got me hooked to what later became my favorite genre in the world. That’s why watching it bleed to death right in front of me hurts like hell. It really should have ended with book 8. After that, it just went from bad to worse.
You are more than welcome to contribute to the list in comments. I’ll add some of your comments to the actual list, together with your name and link to your blog, if you want.
Dead Ever After? No, thank you! (Oh, who am I kidding? Of course I’ll read it.)