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    Review of DEAD UNTIL DARK by Charlaine Harris (see her website)


    Ace Books, 2001

    Sookie Stackhouse isn't a fang-banger, but when a handsome vampire walks into the bar where she works, she can't help the attraction. Especially since his is one of the few minds she can't read. Since she can't help reading minds when she touches someone, sex hasn't been easy before--but with the vampire, anything is possible. Of course, a vampire is different and Sookie isn't sure she can deal with the amoral violence that Bill the Vampire deals out.

    When vampire lovers start to die in Bon Temps, Louisiana, Sookie wonders whether she'll be the next victim. Her mind-reading ability doesn't point to anyone and the police have settled on her brother. Bill is certainly willing to defend her, but he's only available after dark, and he brings his own problems, including a hungry senior vampire named Eric who insists on coming into Sookie's life. Somehow, Sookie has to get to the bottom of the killings, save her brother from the police, end the increasing hatred between vampires and the human, and manage to stay alive at the same time.

    Author Charlaine Harris (see more reviews of fantasy novels by Harris) combines smooth and compelling writing with exciting world-building and a well-constructed mystery. There are plenty of red herrings, some exciting action scenes, and a thoughtful look at the way people deal with new and scary things (like vampires).

    DEAD UNTIL DARK is an enjoyable treat.

    Four Stars

    Reviewed 6/30/03

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