Who’s been watching HBO’s True Blood? Me! Most of my friends have stopped watching the series saying there’s too much sex in it which, although true, doesn’t really bother me much except for the orgy scenes, obviously *rolls eyes*. But I seem to have become fixated on the series. Hello Eric Northman, the Viking vampire played by Alexander Skarsgård. Yup, it’s always because there’s some handsome blond dude. I have a weakness and it cannot be helped.

When I started watching the first series on tv, I happened upon a copy of the first book in the series on which True Blood is based: Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris. As it was only a pound, I had to get it, right? Steph and Tony Investigate! had mixed feelings about Dead Until Dark and it lay on my shelf for months until I read Gaskella’s review and thought, why not?

And she’s right, I thought it was a great read. Maybe because I’ve already seen the series, I kept comparing the book to it, but it was fine. It was a quick and easy read and I read it in two sittings (which is pretty quick for me these days with my shrinking attention span!) Dead Until Dark covers most of series one of True Blood minus some characters and plot threads which probably appear in other books. I suppose this is because tv works differently from books. But that’s OK with me.

Sookie Stackhouse is a waitress working at Merlotte’s in Bon Temps, Louisiana. When we first meet her, she’s someone who’s trying hard to appear normal and hide her ‘disability’ from others. She can read minds and is always on edge. That is, until handsome Bill Compton arrives at Merlotte’s. For the first time in her life, Sookie knows peace and quiet as she cannot read him. And she’s excited because he’s the first vampire she’s ever met. Vampires have become mainstream since synthetic blood was formulated by the Japanese thus negating the need for them to drink from humans. There is still an uneasy and fragile concord between the two species but things seem to be progressing with the introduction of laws to ease the vampires into human society.

But as soon as Sookie and Bill form a friendship, two ladies with an interest in vampires are found murdered in their beds. As the killer strikes close to home, Sookie must try and find out who did it while protecting her fragile relationship with Vampire Bill. With her handsome brother Jason under suspicion from the police for his past dalliance with the two murdered women, Sookie starts her own investigation. With the aid of Bill, she visits Fangtasia, where vampires and their groupies hang out, to ask questions. She also meets Eric Northman, the owner of the club and the Vampire Sheriff for the area, who shows a dangerous interest in Sookie and her ability to read minds. As Sookie’s world becomes more crowded and dangerous, will she be able to find the killer in time before she becomes a target herself? And will she be able to keep control of her relationships?

I thought this was a great book. It’s easy to read, sexy and gallops at a fast pace. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the series, although as A Little Bookish pointed out, the tv series is better written. But I’m not complaining. I have to add, however, that maybe reading this in book form rather than audio form may be less cringy, what with all the sex ‘n’ all;P By a happy coincidence, I just found the fourth in the series, Dead to the World featuring Eric Northman, in my local charity shop. I say it’s destiny^^

Have you read any of the Southern Vampire books or watched True Blood? Did it tickle your fancy? Spill!