Fiction

Dead Until Dark, Charlaine Harris

2015-02-16 21.18.21It is never a good sign when the nicest thing you can think to say about a book is that it isn’t quite as bad as Twilight. Dead Until Dark is the first in the series of novels that the True Blood tv show was based on and, while it is better than Twilight, it is only by a hair and really only because the protagonist is at least a grown up.

If I complain, from time to time, that Star Trek isn’t always my cup of tea, that is nothing compared to my general dislike, nay loathing, of neo-vampire books. Call me old fashioned, but I just don’t find the coldly-unavailable highly-controlling violent-killer thing very attractive.  I just can’t empathize with these women who just make a series of bad vampire related choices because they are so drawn in by the way the vampires are horrid to them.

This means that I spend the whole book thinking things like “why would you do that?” and “no, don’t go into the vampire bar, that’s clearly a terrible idea” and “of course he is going to lose control and bite you: he is a vampire; you are an idiot” and “ouch, that must’ve hurt” and “She’s a virgin? Seriously? What is this, Dracula? Could it get more paint by numbers?”  There is even a point in the book where she is so scared he is about to kill her that the only thing she can do to keep herself alive is to persuade him to have sex with her as an alternative. Surely at that point you decide to skip town or invest in silver or take up whittling or become a garlic farmer?? But no, not if you are in a neo-vampire book, it would seem it just makes you love him more.

At least, in the book’s favour, the obligatory virgin does beat up the killer (not her vampire, silly, he is a nice killer) by herself in the end, without needing rescuing by some boy vampire, but I couldn’t help feeling that if she had made better choices earlier on, she wouldn’t’ve needed to.

You will all be pleased to know that there are only another 7 books in the series that we have to wade through, although I may be too angry to read them all.

8 thoughts on “Dead Until Dark, Charlaine Harris

  1. It’s just as well us women are all stupid and silly and love to be victims or there would never have been any literature at all. And thank goodness all men are strong, handsome heroes, even when they’re vicious bloodsuckers…

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  2. You could sort and classify these books, choose one book from each pile as being representative and critique that. If it’s good, carry on and read the rest of the pile. If its dire, you could assume that the rest would be the same. You can then put the whole of the dire pile in the Oxfam box. It’s not totally scientific but it would save many hours of your life. Just think. no more more neo-vampires, no more Star Trek…

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    • I’m seriously thinking about that for these True Blood books. I feel like they are glorifying abusive relationships, and I’m not comfortable with that. I’m not sure whether blogging about them is helpful in providing a counter-view or just draws more attention to them. I’ve been ranting about how much I dislike them all day to various people.

      Star Trek is at least innocuous, and fundamentally all about valuing diversity and trying to do the right thing even when it is hard!

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  3. Pingback: Well, that was February! | Blogging Around My Bookcase

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