Discussion:
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by Charlaine Harris
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Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2020-03-21 20:02:48 UTC
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030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris

This review has *SPOILERS* *SPOILERS* *SPOILERS*

No matter what situations Harris puts her lead character in, Sookie's
"voice" is always true and convincing, so I can't complain about
that. What I think I *can* complain a bit about is the way Harris
seems to be constandly re-thinking the direction of these books.
For instance, the second (or maybe third?) book ends with Sookie
getting regular doses of vampire blood, exhibiting supra-human
levels of strength and speed and starting to glow a bit (to her
"supe"-sensitive eyes anyway). Clearly the original intent was for
the next book to address this, but in the event Harris changed her
mind and basically negated that storyline, making for a jarring
transition. Similarly, the last book before this, took Sookie out
into the wider vampire world with only perfunctory nods to Bon
Temps. Either Harris felt it didn't work, or got negative feedback,
because this book is an almost complete negation of that, placing
Sookie firmly back in Bon Temps and putting her cares as a financially
struggling waitress back front and center. All of the wider-world
events started in the previous book affect Sookie only as they reach
into Bon Temps. This is particularly apparent with the offscreen
death of Queen Sophie, and the very unsatisfying way the vampire
war plays out with Sookie and her front-porch being on the very
periphry of events.

Harris continues her trend of sabotaging love interests she feels
aren't working out, this time sacking Quinn. I never liked Quinn,
but the events that culminated in his being dumped seemed particularly
arbitrary to me. Arbitrary as well, was Harris throwing Sam back
into the romantic mix, with no thoughts from Sookie as to how he
had previously taken up with the Menead who almost killed her. I
thought as well that her remarks to him about why she wanted to
stay involved in the vampire world were a bit weak. I've said in
previous reviews and will say again here: For Sookie to stay
involved with the vampires, she needs some actual vampire friends.
Not lovers and ex-lovers like Eric & Bill, but some vampires she
actually enjoys hanging out with. Bubba is too flaky [as an aside,
I note that Harris apparently received some legal advice after the
last book to the effect that it was OK to explicitly say that he
was Elvis, something she had never done by name until this book],
and apparently Pam is on another wavelength. You would think that
after mixing for this long, if Sookie hasn't found any vampires she
could hang around and play cards with, the scene isn't for her.
D B Davis
2020-04-04 22:42:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
Vampire Elvis, presumably Presley, and not former bloodsucker Lionel
"Elvis" Cormac.



Thank you,
--
Don.......My cat's )\._.,--....,'``.
telltale tall tail /, _.. \ _\ (`._ ,.
tells tall tales.. `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Magewolf
2020-04-05 15:59:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
This review has *SPOILERS* *SPOILERS* *SPOILERS*
No matter what situations Harris puts her lead character in, Sookie's
"voice" is always true and convincing, so I can't complain about
that. What I think I *can* complain a bit about is the way Harris
seems to be constandly re-thinking the direction of these books.
For instance, the second (or maybe third?) book ends with Sookie
getting regular doses of vampire blood, exhibiting supra-human
levels of strength and speed and starting to glow a bit (to her
"supe"-sensitive eyes anyway). Clearly the original intent was for
the next book to address this, but in the event Harris changed her
mind and basically negated that storyline, making for a jarring
transition. Similarly, the last book before this, took Sookie out
into the wider vampire world with only perfunctory nods to Bon
Temps. Either Harris felt it didn't work, or got negative feedback,
because this book is an almost complete negation of that, placing
Sookie firmly back in Bon Temps and putting her cares as a financially
struggling waitress back front and center. All of the wider-world
events started in the previous book affect Sookie only as they reach
into Bon Temps. This is particularly apparent with the offscreen
death of Queen Sophie, and the very unsatisfying way the vampire
war plays out with Sookie and her front-porch being on the very
periphry of events.
Harris continues her trend of sabotaging love interests she feels
aren't working out, this time sacking Quinn. I never liked Quinn,
but the events that culminated in his being dumped seemed particularly
arbitrary to me. Arbitrary as well, was Harris throwing Sam back
into the romantic mix, with no thoughts from Sookie as to how he
had previously taken up with the Menead who almost killed her. I
thought as well that her remarks to him about why she wanted to
stay involved in the vampire world were a bit weak. I've said in
previous reviews and will say again here: For Sookie to stay
involved with the vampires, she needs some actual vampire friends.
Not lovers and ex-lovers like Eric & Bill, but some vampires she
actually enjoys hanging out with. Bubba is too flaky [as an aside,
I note that Harris apparently received some legal advice after the
last book to the effect that it was OK to explicitly say that he
was Elvis, something she had never done by name until this book],
and apparently Pam is on another wavelength. You would think that
after mixing for this long, if Sookie hasn't found any vampires she
could hang around and play cards with, the scene isn't for her.
Arbitrary is a good way to put it, I think. That is something that can
really pull me out of a book. The more of it that is in a series the
more it makes me think what is the point of reading this? If past
events can effectively have no effect on the present what was the point
of writing them?
D B Davis
2020-04-05 17:17:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
The quality of Harris' prose aside, this ?neo-Southern Gothic? genre
shows promise (in an alternative universe that affords me the requisite
immortality to read to my heart's delight). Allow me to now jump to a
tangential topic.

Among other things, Ted collects images of "What's not in Columbia
anymore." My own image collection includes yahoo search backgrounds that
aesthetically appeal to me. Take this one:

Loading Image...

At first blush, it looks like a summer night in a Southwestern town, to
me at least. But, after you zoom in you can clearly see the Spanish moss
dangling from tree branches in the background. So, Southeastern,
strictly speaking, and not Southwestern. Some sfnal Gothic thing may be
happening in the room with the blue light...



Thank you,
--
Don.......My cat's )\._.,--....,'``.
telltale tall tail /, _.. \ _\ (`._ ,.
tells tall tales.. `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2020-04-05 17:58:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by D B Davis
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
The quality of Harris' prose aside, this ?neo-Southern Gothic? genre
shows promise (in an alternative universe that affords me the requisite
immortality to read to my heart's delight). Allow me to now jump to a
tangential topic.
Among other things, Ted collects images of "What's not in Columbia
anymore." My own image collection includes yahoo search backgrounds that
https://sxh.yimg.com/jf/flickr-assets/photos/flickr_page_6_791-40707549864_6db7f58f91_k.jpg
At first blush, it looks like a summer night in a Southwestern town, to
me at least. But, after you zoom in you can clearly see the Spanish moss
dangling from tree branches in the background. So, Southeastern,
strictly speaking, and not Southwestern. Some sfnal Gothic thing may be
happening in the room with the blue light...
☮
Thank you,
Interesting shot. It puts me very much in the mind of Fernandina Beach FL,
though I know the place well enough to say it's not there.
--
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
J. Clarke
2020-04-06 01:48:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by D B Davis
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
The quality of Harris' prose aside, this ?neo-Southern Gothic? genre
shows promise (in an alternative universe that affords me the requisite
immortality to read to my heart's delight). Allow me to now jump to a
tangential topic.
Among other things, Ted collects images of "What's not in Columbia
anymore." My own image collection includes yahoo search backgrounds that
https://sxh.yimg.com/jf/flickr-assets/photos/flickr_page_6_791-40707549864_6db7f58f91_k.jpg
At first blush, it looks like a summer night in a Southwestern town, to
me at least. But, after you zoom in you can clearly see the Spanish moss
dangling from tree branches in the background. So, Southeastern,
strictly speaking, and not Southwestern. Some sfnal Gothic thing may be
happening in the room with the blue light...
☮
Thank you,
Interesting shot. It puts me very much in the mind of Fernandina Beach FL,
though I know the place well enough to say it's not there.
Interesting that you say that. I had the same reaction--I grew up
there and agree that it's not there.
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2020-04-06 04:13:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by J. Clarke
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by D B Davis
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
030 From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Book 8) by
Charlaine Harris
The quality of Harris' prose aside, this ?neo-Southern Gothic? genre
shows promise (in an alternative universe that affords me the requisite
immortality to read to my heart's delight). Allow me to now jump to a
tangential topic.
Among other things, Ted collects images of "What's not in Columbia
anymore." My own image collection includes yahoo search backgrounds that
https://sxh.yimg.com/jf/flickr-assets/photos/flickr_page_6_791-40707549864_6db7f58f91_k.jpg
At first blush, it looks like a summer night in a Southwestern town, to
me at least. But, after you zoom in you can clearly see the Spanish moss
dangling from tree branches in the background. So, Southeastern,
strictly speaking, and not Southwestern. Some sfnal Gothic thing may be
happening in the room with the blue light...
☮
Thank you,
Interesting shot. It puts me very much in the mind of Fernandina Beach FL,
though I know the place well enough to say it's not there.
Interesting that you say that. I had the same reaction--I grew up
there and agree that it's not there.
Kind of an older Centre Street area look.

My grandfather ran the waterworks in the 1930s, my Aunt lived
on 7th St. Spent many a summer and winter week there.
--
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
Loading...