It hath arrived. The long-awaited final book in the 13-book Sookie Stackhouse series. Or the Southern Vampire Mysteries. Whatever you prefer.
I fell in love with the series in high school. I’ve read every page. I’ve watched every episode of True Blood (based on the books with several liberties taken), and I’ve even read the fan fiction. There I said it. I’ve had a voracious appetite for anything Sookie Stackhouse.
It was like a high school relationship too. It was puppy love. Nothing serious. No Crime and Punishment, but it was fun. I suck with it for far too long. Everyone said to give it up, that the books had gone downhill, but I remained faithful until the end.
I won’t spoil the ending for you like the rest of the internet so I’ll just stick with my literary criticism.
I think Harris created lovable characters, which is extremely hard to do in her genre of jaded romance paperback lovers and mystery solvers and fantasy fans. The first books had this wonderful magic about them. They were enchanting.
As the books went on, they experienced a prolonged sophomore slump, if you can say that about multiple works. I thought the struggle was all about coming through to a brighter ending. It was as if Harris was like: “Listen, y’all (because she is southern), these books are gonna be rough, but stick with me, and I’ll carry you through.”
Did this happen? I’ll leave that up to you.
I will say that I was disappointed. Incredibly so. Harris failed to evolve her series as it went on. It became formulaic. I knew how it would go without opening the cover. The books were like an episode of Scooby Doo.
It had so much potential, but Harris’ charming southern colloquialisms and Sookie’s stubbornness could only go so far. I wish she would have developed what she was working with and stuck with a good thing instead of stretching the series beyond its reach and alienating its fans.
If you’re feeling the post-series emptiness, fill the void with fanciful fan fiction until you find another series that can hopefully follow through.
- Charlaine Harris Says Goodbye to Sookie Stackhouse (tor.com)
- True Blood: Author Charlaine Harris THREATENED By Fans Over Story Ending!! (perezhilton.com)