This book was a Swan Song for the long running Sookie Stackhouse series. I wasn’t sure what to expect going into this book. I have deliberately avoided reading other people’s thoughts so that I could enjoy this with no preconceived notions going in. Yes, I am well aware of the irony that I’m writing up a review of my thoughts and impressions for others when I wouldn’t read other reviews first. Haha! And with that statement, I am left with some reservations about exactly what i wish to put into a review so I don’t destroy someone else’s reading experience.
First and foremost for those of you who have been living under a rock or are late to the PNR/UF genres, do not read this series out of order and definitely stop here if you are not caught up on the series. These have to be read in order.
Secondly, my summary is going to be shorter and admittedly rather vague for your protection against spoilers as will be my comments. Some of you are wondering if that is possible for me? We shall see.
This story picks up right after the big blow up with the fae conspiracy and the show down for the wolves out on Alcide’s property. Well it picks up after a prologue that reveals that there is trouble stirring on the horizon for Sookie as two different groups of enemies are plotting to take her out for their own revealed and unrevealed reasons.
Sookie has saved Sam’s life by using the Cluvial Dor wish and this has ramifications aplenty in her personal life and from a new enemy who as arisen for her (like she needs one more of those, right?). Sookie is shocked by the change in Sam after his death to life experience, but accepts that he needs some time to wrap his mind around it all. Sookie needs some time too after learning what she did about her fae relations and Eric so she waits.
But soon she is pulled out of her depression when an old enemy surfaces, dies, and Sookie gets pinned for the murder. Lots of familiar old faces start turning up after that and things start moving.
Now as to my impressions. Early on, the tone of this book struck me as passive and mellow. I was okay with that at first because it makes sense that there might be a sense of let down and exhaustion after everything that happened at the end of the last book. The trouble is that the distant feeling and the passiveness continued for me. The story never got crisp and tight. I never felt connected with Sookie’s emotions. She was like the eye of storm.
I’m going to put this out there at least. Even beyond the tone of the story, the plot (aka Sookie’s choices) is never going to make everyone happy. I am not one of the ones disappointed by that so much as by the fact that I just wanted it to be more challenging, raw and intense like other books in the series. I didn’t hate the gentle meandering through Sookie’s little Southern rural happenings and friends, but I’ve been spoiled by having that along with the mysterious happenings and the life and death action through the other books. Gotta say that one of the enemies in this one was a big shocker and I didn’t see that coming. The fact that this is a final book finished with me feeling like things were still left unfinished in some ways.
That is my take (or what I’m willing to say without spoilers) on the final story. Fans of the series should definitely read this final edition. It will have a bittersweet feel and possibly frustration for many. I will miss the Sookie Stackhouse world and will probably end up re-reading the series at some point.
Just one final thing- For those who have already read the book and have opinions (I have no doubt this book will generate strong opinions) please warn of spoilers at the beginning of your comment so it will protect those who haven’t read it yet.