Thursday, February 4, 2010

Vampire books etc

As a present my newly married older brother bought me the complete Stookie Stackhouse novels. They have recently been turned into the excellent TV show "True Blood" - which was written by the quite frankly fantastic Alan Ball (not the dead ginger footballer, someone else) he also wrote one of the best shows to come from America in the last ten years "Six Feet Under".

And since she was in it, and I appreciate her aesthetics qualities, here is a picture of Lauren Ambrose who was in "Six Feet Under".
Any way, back to the books. Written by Charline Harris, who looks like this:

Don't know why but I didn't think she would look like this. But she looks happy and she is at a signing and she is signing a book so I would imagine more than one person turned up. So she is popular.

I have just finished the first book, "Dead until Dark", all the titles have the word dead in them. As Vampires are dead. So they are based on a firm grasp of logic. I have to admit that I was sceptical about whether or not I would like these books. As I thought they were targeted firmly towards women. Like Twilight. But I have read it, as previously hinted, and it is really good. The characterisation is immersing, especially given the fact that it is a first person narrative. However, rather cleverly, Harris has given her protagonist - Sookie - mind reading abilities which allows the reader to temporarily to hijack their internal monologues. Which usually run as an italicised stream of consciousness.

The plot basically revolves around the romance between Sookie and a Vampire named Bill. Vampires came "out of the coffin" two years ago when the Japanese invented a synthetic blood which Vampires find as nutritious as human blood. And there is a killer on the loose. Not saying who it is, unless you have seen the show then you'll already know. So after Jason has killed three of four waitresses Bill fights him in a really exciting finale.

But this got me thinking of the comparisons between this series and the other famous Vampire love story. Namely that piece of shite that is Twilight. Both feature lonely marginalised women in love with dangerous romantic type outsiders. But if Twilight is aimed at the teen market and is a way of making teenager stay celebate before marriage. You could argue that the Twilight series is such a success because it captured the Vampire zeitgeist and the lovers are, due to ones mortality, ultimately doomed. Like Romeo and Juliet they are meant to be opposites, like Peter and Katie they are divided by culture, but like these two they must be doomed. Now I have not read them so they may end up living forever together in a semi-detached in a suburb of a major town. Probably not.

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