Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Archive for the tag “Deadlocked”

faintingviolet’s #CBR4 review #43: Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

Thank goodness this one is over and there’s only going to be one more.

You know how you enjoyed the Sookie books as trashy summer reads and they lured you into watching that crazy True Blood on HBO? Yeah. All the reasons you did are gone in this the twelfth book in the series. There has been a complete and total annihilation of the story arc and character developments in this series and we the loyal reader who simply must read the entire series because we have some OCD issues are paying the price.

The plot for Deadlocked is that the fae are still infesting the Bon Temps environs, Claude is missing in Faery, Sookie has a magic fairy object that others are on the hunt for, the vampires are still dealing with the fall-out from the murder of Nevada vampires from several books ago, and someone is trying to frame Eric for the death of a woman on his front lawn, Eric has also been betrothed to another vampire and is waiting for Sookie to use her magic fairy object to save him from this without giving her a reason to do so. Oh, and there’s a missing werewolf who witnessed the vampire killings which may be related to the dead girl on Eric’s front lawn. I think that about covers it. Somehow, all of these disparate things attempt to tie together. Attempt being the operative word.

These books were never capital L literature. They were fun. So why take the fun away? Charlaine Harris seems to have it out for those of us who show up looking for the previous formula of a coherent mystery surrounding some aspect of Sookie’s personal life (whether it be her zoo of boyfriends, vampire friends, or fae family) and fun character development featuring the romance novel angle.  What are we left with? Mundane chapter swollen with the minutia of our formerly perky, polite, considerate protagonist’s day. The truth is it’s boring, and ultimately a waste of words. The action is absent, the characters are hollow and the main storylines are resolved with a flick of the fairy wrist and a new plot development pops up in the final 15 pages just in time to lure the reader into reading the final book next year.

This is only my second 1 star book of the Cannonball… be warned, stay away.

ambern’s #CBR4 Review #22 Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

The newest Sookie Stackhouse.  I get excited every year when a new entry to this series comes out and even though they haven’t been as fun as they used to be, they are still a nice escape.  As usual, if you haven’t caught up with the series, there will be slight spoilers.

Deadlocked picks up a couple weeks after the events of the last book; Sookie is settled with her fairy roommates, her best friend is expecting twins at any moment, in fact, everyone in her life seems to be settling down with their partners.  Except Sookie.  Her relationship with Eric has been strained since she severed her blood bond and she has become wistful for a life that she cannot possibly have with a vampire.

Her troubles with Eric are increased when she arrives to a party for Felipe de Castro, the vampire king of Louisiana, Nevada, and Arkansas, who is in town to investigate Victor’s disappearance.  There, Sookie finds Eric drinking from a half-were woman who is later found dead on his lawn.  Everyone is pulled into the investigation, but Sookie’s worries over her grandmother’s final gift to her, the fairy-made cluviel dor; a prize that many would be willing to kill her for.  Sookie is again pushed into a mystery that she wants no part of.

This entry is definitely not as good as most of the previous ones, but it was still entertaining for me.  I love the characters, especially Sookie and Eric, and I am even fine with the more mundane aspects of them that Harris throws in.  My biggest complaint was the lack of Eric, but I understand that it was necessary to show the isolation that Sookie has felt from him.  There could also have been more humor, there was far too much betrayal going on, and Harris hasn’t been lightening the mood like she used to.  Overall though, I enjoyed it and will be anxiously waiting for the final chapter in this series.

Even Stevens’s #CBR4 Review #11: Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

Deadlocked is the twelfth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series from Charlaine Harris. These books are basically paranormal crack. And much like crack, you can’t get enough of them the first few times around, then they began to lose their luster, and by the end, it barely brings you any pleasure, but you’re hooked and you keep on reading because it might get better and feel like it used to*.

For those unfamiliar with the series, Sookie Stackhouse is a nice Southern girl, who works in her friend’s bar, lives in her Gran’s old house, oh, and she’s a telepath that can hear that thoughts of others. In her world, vampires have come out and announced to society that they exist, and with this revelation many other supernatural creatures enter the picture as well.

Stupid analogies aside, I’ve been frustrated with the last couple of books; where they used to be frenetically paced and jam-packed with action, Harris seems to have swung the pendulum in the opposite direction… now we get detailed descriptions of Sookie’s breakfast cereal choices. There needs to be a balance, a lull in action sometimes, but that lull should not constitute an entire book (or several). That was my frustration with books ten and eleven; twelve was a 50/50 split. The first half of the book revealed the same glacial pace that has characterized the last few, but blissfully the action started to pick up in the last half. I was almost ready to give up in frustration, but I was recovering from surgery so I didn’t have much else to do other than sit around in a recliner and read.

Frankly, if you’ve made it to book twelve, you’re probably in as deep as I am, so you may as well jump in. There’s not much new to report; Harris follows her story setup from previous books. A mystery or problem is presented (usually involving a dead body, or several), Sookie puzzles over it, Sookie gets put in danger, mystery is resolved, Sookie thinks she should stop hanging around supernatural beings but doesn’t. For me, the draw has always been the characters – Pam and Eric especially. The fae play a large part in this book, and really I think that’s where the series went downhill for me, I really hate all the fae storylines. But I digress. Harris has said that book thirteen will be her last Sookie Stackhouse and I think that’s a wise choice. I think we’ve gone about three books too long as it is. Bottom line: If you’ve made it this far in the series, it’s not a terrible way to spend a day or two; it’s a quick beachy kind of read and it definitely entertains in some parts. If you’ve never read these, the first few are great if you like paranormal with a side of quirk.

*This is totally true and accurate. Maybe. I don’t know, I’ve never actually done crack.

Alli’s #CBR4 Review # 26: Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

I found out that the latest Sookie Stackhouse book was out when reading the winning review of CRB4 by Malin. I was pretty excited to read it and was lucky to get a copy on a Superloan from my library (they put new popular titles on a 7 day no renew no request basis, with a $1 per day late charge). I didn’t need the 7 days as I gobbled it up in about 3.

There is nothing really all that special about these books, but there is just something about them that speaks to my guilty pleasure side. I have read all of them, and reviewed quite a few of them as well. This book is not much different from the rest, there is a crime, a mystery of sorts to be solved. We get to spend time with our favorite characters, Sookie, Eric, Sam and I suppose for some even Bill.

Read the rest on my blog

Malin’s #CBR4 Review # 52: Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

This is the 12th (and thankfully) penultimate novel in Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse/Southern Vampire Mysteries/True Blood series, and while it may make some sense to a new reader, it’s really not a good starting point. It will contain spoilers for the later half of the series, and the first books are much better anyway, so do yourself a favour and start there.

At this point, I’m really only reading this series because it’s nearly at an end, and I’ve stuck with it for so long, I may as well see it through. I’ve quit so many series (Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time, Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth, Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum books, Elizabeth Peters’ Amelia Peabody (and all her damn relatives) series) because it just felt like a waste of time to keep going, and I must admit, if Harris hadn’t promised to end with the next one, this series is getting to me close to the end of my patience.

It’s not that stuff doesn’t happen in the book, because it does. I just don’t care much about it. As always, there is a mystery that’s nominally the focus for the plot. Sookie arrives late at a gathering at Eric’s house, to find him feeding on a young half-were woman. The woman later turns up dead on Eric’s front lawn, and it’s obvious that someone’s setting him up. But the investigation into how the girl died and who killed her is not really dwelt on for long, because Sookie’s too busy narrating in tedious detail every little thing she does with each and every minute of her day.

A lot of the people around Sookie are now in happy, stable relationships. Several are on the verge of getting married, or having babies. Sookie’s not actually very happy with Eric, and even if they were to sort out their difficulties, having a vampire for a husband means Sookie can never have babies (although I guess she could adopt). Although frankly, with her extended faerie kin hanging around, and the complicated power plays and intrigue they get up to, I’m not entirely sure why she so desperately wants to continue her own bloodline. But yeah, there’s a lot of focus on weddings, or pregnancies, or actual babies. None of which Sookie can have.

There’s also trouble with Victor, the local King, who’s there to investigate the death of his representative. But not much happens with that plot line, except his vampire entourage have a bit of an orgy, and Sookie’s pissed off because they ruin Eric’s coffee table.

Sookie also spends a lot of time worrying about the super powerful magic faery gift her grandmother left her, and it would be bad if other people found out that she has it. Events that take place suggest people might even be willing to kill to get their hands on this faery prezzie. There’s also some sort of unrest among the werewolves, and Sam’s werewolf girlfriend is jealous of Sookie or some such.

Stuff happens, but it’s difficult to care much about it. The book ends on a bit of a cliff hanger, it may be Harris’ way of telling us who Sookie should end up with in the end, but I hope not, as said character has been pretty seriously friend-zoned for a lot of the series, and it seems like a bad choice. I think the best ending would be Sookie deciding that she’s happy on her own, but that’s unlikely to happen. The reason this gets two stars is that despite the drag of the later books, I LIKE Sookie. I think she’s grown a lot as a character, and I wish her well. It’s just that Charlaine Harris should’ve ended the series quite some time ago.

Only one book to go. I’ll probably read it, just to get closure.

Crossposted with my blog and Goodreads.

****

And with that, dear Readers, I finish Cannonball Read IV! (although I’ll keep blogging the books I enjoy).

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