Title: Living Dead in Dallas
Author: Charlaine Harris
Publication Year: 2002
Genre: Fiction, Fantasy
Source: Borrowed from the public library
From the cover:
When a vampire asks cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse for a favor, she complies. And soon she’s in Dallas, using her telepathic skills to search for a missing vampire. She agrees to interview the humans involved as long as the bloodsuckers promise to let them go unharmed. Easier said than done. All it takes is one delicious blonde and one small mistake for things to turn deadly.
Just like Dead Until Dark, the second season of the HBO series follows along quite faithfully with Living Dead in Dallas … at least in the basics. This is where the book series and the television series slowly start to diverge, until a few books from now, they’re almost completely different.
I liked the way that Harris had the characters move farther afield in this book, outside of the comfort zone of Bon Temps. It was nice to see Sookie come into her own a bit with the telepathy, be able to control it. At the same time, I also felt like the writing style and detail of this book was an improvement on Dead Until Dark – it started to feel more like there was something beneath the surface, and it wasn’t just a bare-bones basics story.
However, I did feel in this book in particular that there were bits of the story that could’ve still been fleshed out a bit more (and I must not be the only one who feels this way, as the tv series did just that). For example, the backstory of the vampire they’re looking for is very minimalist. I would’ve been more interested in the search for him if there had been more of, well, him for me as a reader to feel sympathy for.
As further setup for the characters and the relationships between them in the rest of the series, definitely pick up Living Dead in Dallas. It’s not really my favourite book in the series but it sets up a few things that come about later on.