The past few weeks my wife and I have been watching the HBO show, True Blood. At first I was a bit skeptical about the show as it did not look that terribly enticing in the adds… But, I am a fan of Allan Ball’s work (Six Feet Under, American Beauty, etc) and decided to give it a shot. My wife caught the first episode without me (as we do not have HBO at the apartment up here in Tallahassee) but told me that I would have to watch it when I got back down to Gainesville. I did so and was pleasantly surprised. My wife was hooked enough that she forced most of her friends to watch it and went out and bought the book, Dead Until Dark, reading through it in almost no time (which is a bit unusual for her).
The show, as the book, revolves around a telepathic waitress of a small town bar. The hook of the show is that after a scientific breakthrough introducing synthetic blood, vampires have revealed themselves to the world. Both the book and the series take a look at how prejudices, preconceptions and dispositions sort themselves out in learning to deal with something new.
I would have to say that I am happy that I watched the first few episodes of the show before starting the book as it differs from the book in some pretty significant ways that I may not have been happy with if I had digested them in the reverse order. Just a word of warning… they are not the same. I think that both are good, in their own ways.
Dead Until Dark
This book, by Charlaine Harris, was an easy read which did take seem to take itself that seriously. There was enough action in it to keep the reader interested. The dialogue seemed a little bit juvenile… but all in all it did not really detract from the book to much. Even though there wasn’t much character development, the internal musings of the main character were often pretty humorous. The scenes and imagery were light on description, but the content was enough to get the ole imagination going. Any book or series that gets my wife to read through them as quickly as she has (she is on book five in under a month), and which also got me to read through as quickly as I did, is obviously doing something right.
It is hard not to compare this novel to some of the other psuedo romance dark brooding noir vampire books. It may just be the time in my life, or perhaps it was the tone of the book, but I would have to say that other books in this genre have left better impressions with me. Even with that, however, I would still recommend this to any fan of the show, or others who might enjoy a vampire book that leans towards a romance novel with more than a touch of humor… I would also have to say that it was good enough to get me to move on to the second book.