So I just finished Book 1 of The Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. Though not a bad read, it simply make me like it’s television counterpart that much more.
This post is going to be spoilerific for Season 1 of True Blood and Book 1, Dead Until Dark. Reader beware!
There are some key differences in the book that vary from Alan Ball’s portrayal of Sookie and her gang of misfits. First off, the tone of the book is much lighter and airy. Sookie is a little more naive, flighty, and ditzy. Compared to True Blood’s bloody, intense, and much darker tones and themes, I was surprised by my first glimpse into Harris’s world. Sook in the book was quite different, and it was hard to get a grasp on it with Anna Paquin on the mind. (Note: It is only Book 1, so this could definitely change as I dive deeper into the books).
No Tara! There is absolutely zero presence of Tara Thornton! Though, after the first few chapters of the second book, Living Dead in Dallas, it is mentioned that Lafayette has a cousin….because he’s dead and they need to contact his family! Whaaaaat!? I know, right? I’ll pause a minute to allow you to digest.
Alan Ball really gets full credit for the crossdressing, bi-curious drug dealer Lafayette. Not only did he advance this character into a fan favorite, but he chose to keep him alive as well! Kudos, Ball (I promise I’ll get to Season 5 of Six Feet Under soon, but I’m a tad preoccupied as you can see..).
Another con for the books? The entire story is told in Sookie’s point of view. This means less of everyone else and more Sookie/Bill romance action. Look – I’m no Twilight fan and I’d rather hang myself than read that shit. What makes True Blood work is the ensemble! All of the characters are strong, funny, and interesting with each providing some sort of payoff. In the book, almost every character without the name Sookie or Bill takes a backseat. And it’s one of those really, really long van-style backseats. Major con.
So while the book wasn’t bad, I do get that it was Harris’s first attempt at the series. I’m hoping the books get a little better, but when it comes down to it…True Blood is still my go-to Sookie fix