Your mileage may vary
I'm new to reading Charlaine Harris in 2014 and I don't have HBO, so I've never heard of the associated TV show, but after reading the first three Sookie books I have to say they're cute and okay for a light read.
Of course I understand that this is fiction. But I'm very analytical, and once an author chooses to establish "facts" for how the beings in her imaginary world exist and interact, I expect those facts to continue as time goes by or to have changes and exceptions be acknowledged. For now I'll be generous and assume there are times when she wants to make an exception, rather than she can't keep track of her own SVM world facts and is a sloppy author.
So far, the first three books in this series each contain exceptions and/or errors in established SVM "facts" so I have to remind myself that they're just for fun and don't have to always make sense TO ME. But they are fun, and on sale they cost the price of a matinee movie, so I'll keep listening to see what happens next and continue to ignore the contradictions.
The narrator is average and doesn't do much to differentiate voices compared to most of the narrators I have enjoyed from other books. She tries to do a little bit with accents, so the main character is almost always identifiable when she is speaking.
Keep your mind active.
Based on a preview of the second book that is included at the end of the first, the books may diverge more from the HBO series as they advance. I have watched and enjoyed True Blood and I thought the books might contain depth as novels often do. This book was so close to the series, that I was kind of bored. It was enjoyable but not sure I will invest in the rest of the books.
I broke down and bought this book on a whim, despite my hatred of fan fiction. But, despite the cult-like hype surrounding these books, I have to say I really enjoyed listening to it. Sookie is silly and endearing and intelligent all at the same time, and though she's often flighty and scattered, I found myself being drawn to her. I tend to steer clear of anything about vampires for the obvious reasons, but I really enjoyed this book. It gave me a nice break from my usual literary fiction, and I kind of want to listen to the whole series now. Good thing I can access most of the audio books from the library! If you're looking for something fun and catchy, you may just want to try this one.
I am a return college student, mother of three wonderful (step)kids, and housekeeper. I listen to audiobooks while doing homework and cleaning houses.
I have listened to this audiobook more times than I can count. It is we'll read and a vivid story.
Johanna does a great job telling this story.
I listened to this book in one setting the first time I listened.
I was hoping this would be an adult story, like the TV show that it spawned, but in fact it reads more like it's a book I'd find in the "young adult" section of the library. Not quite as teenaged as Twilight, but still a lot of the book sounds rather juvenile, particularly the romance part of the story. Not really bad, but not particularly good either. Which is a shame, because I think it could have been better than it is. The narration is a little uneven, sometimes with a trace of one character's accent bleeding into the next.
Love Audible Books! Love the new whispersync! Not sure why it says I have been a member since 2014 I have been a member since 2010.
Wow these books are addicting. I have watched the series True Blood. I love the series but wow the books a addicting. Totally recommend these books worth the credits and dollars. I have read the first 3 and on to the 4th. It will be very interesting when I get past what I have seen in the show compared to the books. The narrator does an excellent job.
This is a great story line done with wit and orgaization. The stories build one on the other. There are many characters but keeping them straight is easy due to the narrator's skill. Johanna Parker gives the characters their voice and makes the reading an entertaining time. She's so good, you will sometimes find yourself talking back to the characters. And the experience is not just with the first book but the entire series.
“I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.” ― Jorge Luis Borges
This review goes for books 1-9 in the Sookie Steakhouse series.
Fun, interesting, crazy, at times predictable but who cares,...I started reading and I couldn't stop until I read (listened) to all of them. I truly enjoyed them until I read book 10 and I got so very disappointed. Why, oh why Mrs. Harris? I heard number 11 is as bad but I can't say since i stopped buying them. Anyhow, first nine are a must for anybody who enjoys a good vampire story.Oh and reader is great!
I ignore genre labels. Some of my favorite books are outside my genre comfort zone. Listening to audiobooks is still reading. Not theater.
I've almost read this book so many times. I was not familiar with the TV series based on it, and really didn't know a great deal about the book or the subject. But it always got such great reviews and so many people talked about it.
I rated the first book in the series after having read the first three or four books and probably rated it slightly higher than I would have if I rated it right after reading. But the series grows on you and as you learn more about the characters and the unique world they inhabit, the more you appreciate what came before. In the first few books of the series, but especially in the first, the author does a very good job of giving you quite a bit of background information without just reciting a list of "things you need to know to read further." Points introduced in the first book become far more important the further you go in the series. And since the author is creating essentially an alternate universe, I appreciate that she did it gradually, primarily in this book. It made it much easier to accept and believe.
I liked the simplicity of the first book. The number of major characters to keep track of was kept to a minimum. You really got to know them, before many, many others are introduced later on.
I started watching the HBO series after I read this first book. I would suggest that if you watched the series first and then tried to read the books, you would probably be disappointed in the books. To me the two are nothing alike, beyond the fact that some of the characters share the same name. But the HBO series is so much more intense and violent, and considerably less humorous. I was able to ramp up to enjoy the excess. But starting with excess then scaling back is far more difficult.
I will say one of the reasons I have avoided these books is I often have trouble with narrators using a heavy southern drawl, which is what I expected here. They usually exaggerate the unique characteristics of this accent to such a degree it is just annoying. It is not my favorite accent to listen to in real life. The exaggeration makes it worse. But I thought the narrator did a great job in this book. There is no doubt you are reading a book about southern characters living in a southern state. But she comes across as natural, not forced and definitely not over the top.