Review ~ Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

Dead Until Dark (Sookie Stackhouse, #1)Title: Dead Until Dark
Author: Charlaine Harris
Series: Sookie Stackhouse #1
Release Date: May 1, 2001
Genre: Paranormal/Mystery

Sookie Stackhouse is a small-time cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana. She’s quiet, keeps to herself, and doesn’t get out much. Not because she’s not pretty. She is. It’s just that, well, Sookie has this sort of “disability.” She can read minds. And that doesn’t make her too dateable. And then along comes Bill. He’s tall, dark, handsome – and Sookie can’t ‘hear’ a word he’s thinking. He’s exactly the kind of guy she’s been waiting for all her life.

But Bill has a disability of his own: He’s a vampire. Worse than that, hangs with a seriously creepy crowd, with a reputation for trouble – of the murderous kind.

And when one of Sookie’s colleagues is killed, she begins to fear she’ll be next …

Review:

I have had Dead Until Dark sitting on my bookcase waiting to be read for a very long time.  For some reason I just could not bring myself to pick it up and read it until a couple of days ago.  Man am I really sorry I waited as long as I did!

Sookie has what she likes to call a “disability,” she is equipped with this wonderful thing called ‘she can read your mind even if she doesn’t want to.’  Everyone around Sookie thinks she’s a little bit on the whack-a-doo side because of her “disability.”  Sookie doesn’t date either.  Then she meets Bill…

Bill has a “disability’ of his own…the “disability’ known as being a vampire.  Bill is originally from Bon Temps and has decided to settle down there now that vampires have come out to the public.  Let’s just say that Bill is a little old-fashioned on somethings, I mean he is an individual who became a vampire post-Civil War.

Sookie and Bill’s relationship is kind of interesting.  I’m a little “eh” on why they got together but as the book progresses I was pleasantly surprised by Bill and Sookie.  Let’s just say that Sookie is a lot stronger than people give here credit for.

The conflict in the book was really interesting.  There were so many people who could have killed these people and I give major props to the author for not making the murderer to obvious to figure out.  I really don’t care for Andy Bellfluer though.

In this first book in the Sookie Stackhouse series, we are introduced to a whole host of characters besides the main players.  I am really liking Sam who is the owner of the bar that Sookie works at.  As I have already stated I really don’t care for Andy Bellfluer though.  I’m conflicted by Jason, I don’t know how to feel about him and his “habits.”  Bon Temps is growing on me a lot too.

Overall, I was really happy with Dead Until Dark.  I will be continuing this series for sure.  I’ve even gone so far as to check the remaining books out of the library.  I can’t give this book 5 Whiskeys because of my lukewarmness of why Bill and Sookie got together and my dislike/unsureness of certain characters.

Rating: 4 Whiskeys

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Review of Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

gmTitle: Grave Mercy
Author: Robin LaFevers
Series: His Fair Assassin #1
Release Date: April 3, 2012

Genre: Fantasy/Historical Romance/YA/ Mystery

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?
Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

Review:

This book had been sitting on my TBR bookcase since I bought it on Release Day last year. Why you ask has it been sitting there so long? Well I have a TON of books that I’ve bought as a result of following book blogs for a LONG time. I didn’t really have any expectations when I picked up Grave Mercy. All I really new about the book was that it was about the handmaiden’s to Death.

Our heroine, Ismae is one of Death’s daughters and narrowly escapes the brutality that is her bogus arranged marriage when she is helped to reach the convent of St. Mortain. At the convent the occupants serve the god of Death himself. Each person has been blessed with a gift, a very dangerous gift. Ismae is very good at serving her God but then when Ismae is asked to participate in a very important assignment that will take her into the heart of the high court of Brittany she finds herself woefully unprepared for all the things that take place. Or the man that eventually steals her heart and makes her believe again.

Our hero, Duval, is the Duchess’ half brother and is doing everything in his power to keep his sister safe but also see that she is crowned. At first I wasn’t sure if I was going to like Duval. He had this swagger about him that I was lukewarm on in the beginning but as the plot thickened I grew to enjoy Duval very much. Plus, as an added bonus, he’s attracted to Ismae even though he really doesn’t want to be.

There are so many things that happen in this book that had me turning pages even when I should have been doing other things like eating or getting enough sleep for work. It was a freaking roller coaster that I just could not put down. Plus, I really enjoyed almost all of the secondary characters with the exception of 1 or 2. I can hardly wait to dig into the second book, I thought that Ms. LaFevers did an excellent job building up the story so that it will flow easily into Dark Triumph.

Rating: 4 Whiskeys