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Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris:  My Review!

Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris: My Review!

Definitely Dead by Charlene HarrisWhen HBO started the series True Blood.  I had never heard of the Sookie Stackhouse books.   When I did hear about the books I had mistakenly gotten the impression that it was “chic lit” that it was for teen girls and HBO made it a much more adult type series.  Because of this mistake I didn’t read the books.

It was a year or two later and I made a thread on a forum that I moderate about the True Blood series and someone suggested the books.  I said, I thought they were like that Twilight Crap, books for teen girls that don’t give a shit that they’re disrespecting an entire genre with their silly sparkling vampires.

He corrected me and said that if anything, HBO tones it down for TV.  Well, that was enough for me and Johanna Parker the Voice of Sookie StackhouseI started the series on audio.  I had already seen the first season of True Blood.  My first impression was at how closely the TV show matched the book.  There were some character changes.  But, the girl that does Sookie Stackhouse for the audio books is amazing!  Then I became impressed with the actress who plays Sookie on the show.  She does the voice very close to the way the Johanna Parker does the audio books.

I tore through the first few books in the series.  In fact I got to book 5 and then took a break for about a year.  I hadn’t had Definitely Dead on audio yet so I had to put it off for a while and then got immersed in some great zombie books by Mark Tufo and Z. A. Recht.

So, while waiting for Mr. Tufo 6th book in his amazing Zombie Fallout series to come out I finally jumped back into the Sookie books.  It didn’t take long to get back into the action.

Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris involves Sookie having to deal with the death of her cousin Hadley.  The Vampire queen of Louisiana, A witch that lived next door to Hadley, A new man in Sookie’s life.  His name is Quinn.  We also find out some shocking news about why Vampire Bill first started dating Sookie and it breaks Sookie’s heart.

There’s a lot going on this book and Charlaine Harris weaves a fun and easy to follow story.  Good strong characters development as usual.  I guess my only issue with the story is Sookie’s reaction to what Bill tells her.  Now I don’t want to give it away even though this is an old book and the series is on like book 10 or 12 by now?  I personally am almost done with book 7.  So, I don’t want to give significant plot points or storylines away for those that even behind me.  I certainly understood Sookies reaction at first.  But, the one thing I hate more than anything are people who refuse to listen.  I can certainly understand her feelings at first and refusing to listen to Bill.  However, later on to still refuse to listen and to then not even be able to understand.  It just disappointed me in her character.  I adore Sookie and simple way of looking at life and always applying her respectful upbringing to these extraordinary situations she gets involved in.  But, I personally feels like she needs to cut Bill some slack.  She so eagerly believes the reasons why they first dated but then refuses to believe why he still continued to date her.  It’s hypocritical of her in my opinion.  But, then again, I am not a girl and not even women understand women so what chance do I have!?

Other than that this book is great fun.  If you haven’t started this series, jump on it!  I am kicking myself for waiting so long.  There’s just something comfortable about the series and Sookie Stackhouse always makes you feel right at home.

The Morningstar Strain by Z. A. Recht!

The Morningstar Strain by Z. A. Recht!

Plague of the DeadA few months back I discovered Plague of the Dead: The Morningstar Strain by Z. A. Recht.  I downloaded both of his books Plague of the Dead and Thunder and Ashes.  Now let me preface that I love apocalyptic type books.  It doesn’t have to be zombies.  It could a storm, a virus, a plague of Vampires, doesn’t matter.  I’ve just always been fascinated with what happens when society breaks down.  What will people do? How do they react to what’s happened and what now needs to be done.

Now when I started Plague of the Dead I wasn’t sure how much I had liked it.  I had just finished another end of the world trilogy called The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan.  It was enjoyable, it was good even.  But, it lacked a few things in my opinion.  I will review this book later, but I wanted to just say that the  series could have been better.  Then I go right into another end of the world story.  Plague of the Dead:  The Morningstar Strain.  The book was a pleasure.  It wasn’t the greatest zombie story every told.  But, it really held my interest.  I related to most of the characters and most importantly, the main characters didn’t do anything stupid!

After The Strain, I was a little gun shy because there was a major moment of stupid going on at the end of one of the books and though I could kind of understood the characters reasons, it was just such a stupid move it almost ruined the rest of the books in the series for me.  Fortunately, Plague of the Dead was next and it was pretty damn good.

Plague of the Dead is part zombie book, part viral outbreak and part road trip.  There’s a lot of characters but basically two main characters.  One is a female doctor working for the CDC as I recall.  The other is older guy, a general in the Army stationed in Africa.  An outbreak of the Morningstar Virus soon occurres in Africa.

Before long the General and his men are fleeing Africa as it’s zombies are taking over.  He has some limited contact with the younger woman from the CDC.  They have been corresponding via email about the virus.  She is on the east coast and having her own issues with the government and teams up with a few people.    They have decided to attempt to make their way to Omaha Nebraska.  Hoping that the secret CDC office is still functional.

Meanwhile the General and his men have arrived on the west  coast near Seattle.  The government can notThunder and Ashes by ZA Recht be really reached.  The general takes his men and they too head for the CDC office in Nebraska.  The rest of the first book and second are all about the road trip.  The journey to Nebraska is filed with trials and tribulations for both groups.

After finishing the second book I look desperately for part 3.  Can’t find it.  Doesn’t exist!  I look for other books by the author and I very sadly discover that Z. A. Recht had passed away in 2009 a year after Thunder and Ashes was released.  He was only 26 years old.

Fortunately for us, he was working on book three and with the help Thom Brannan the book was finally completed!  I have not read it yet.  It just came out this past week.  I really look forward to getting back to this series.  The first two books were pretty good.  I found them to be completely entertaining. I recommend them to anyone who is a zombie fan or a fan of apocalyptic books.