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Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris
Review by Gayle Surrette
Ace Hardcover Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 0441012795
Date: 03 May, 2005 List Price $22.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

There were many threads hanging at the end of Dead to the World. Would Sookie?s brother Jason, who?d been bitten by a were-panther, change at the next full moon? Would Eric remember what had happened while he was under a curse and in Sookie?s care? Would she ever come to terms with Bill?s betrayal of her trust? Would Sookie finally pay off all the favors she owed to the vampire and shape shifter communities and be able to get on with her life? Some of these questions do get answered in Dead as a Doornail and of course this book leaves you hanging on with more questions and waiting for the next book in the series.

There?s the usual multi-threaded plot: someone is shooting shifters and the shifters suspect someone out for revenge and Jason is top on their list of suspects; detectives are looking for Debbie Pelt; Tara, Sookie?s friend, is having a problem with a vampire; the Shreveport werewolves are looking for a new leader and Alcide Herveaux wants to use her abilities to keep the contest honest; Eric wants the hole in his memory filled; Bill wants Sookie back; and Calvin wants to continue his low-key courtship. These are just a few of the thread followed in this book. The supernatural community is still underestimating Sookie and thinks her unprotected because she hasn?t sworn allegiance to any group. Her power is not her ability to read minds; no, it is in her dedication to family, friends, justice (whether legal or moral), and her solid sense of self-worth. Sookie won?t be used. She helps where she can. She remains faithful to her friends even when it can be dangerous. And, even though she doesn?t ask for help when she needs it herself, she?s there to help others. She?s a person I would be proud to know and call friend.

This far into a series, you usually begin to see a dearth of ideas. Harris manages to keep the series fresh by allowing her characters to grow and change based on their experiences and for the plots to grow out of their previous adventures. The Sookie of this book is not the Sookie of Dead Until Dark and she can never go back to what she was and what she knew. She?s filled with secrets ? her own and those of others. While her ability has always made her aware that the outside of a person is not necessarily the same as their inner thoughts, she?s maintained her belief in the basic goodness of people no matter whether they are supernatural or human.

Recommended. However, if you haven?t read the series it will be easier to follow if you start with the first book, Dead Until Dark.

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