WARNING: CURSE WORDS AT PLAY!!!!
Do you like my title? Do you see how I did that? The final book in Ms.Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse series has come full circle….literally.
Not that I give a shit about about spoilers right now, especially since the book was shit and everything was leaked about two weeks ago! I just like the picture. It is now 3:30 a.m. on the morning of the 7th and I received the book yesterday. Originally, we were all set to write a pre-“Dead Ever After” post, as an ode to our girl Sookie but that plan went astray when the ending of the final book in the series was leaked early. Now, as you can imagine our hearts were just not in it and so we changed our plans.
After reading the book, this is how I felt except I have a PDF version so I had to settle for throwing it in the trash bin after reading it.
Sookie: “I’d changed in order to survive, and I was paying the price of survival. I had to be willing to change myself forever, or everything I made myself do was for nothing.” (DR)
As it turns out, it was all for nothing because Sookie is right back where she started from in “Dead Until Dark”. The only thing different is that she now has more money to spend. After 13 books, there was absolutely no character growth, whatsoever. I don’t, and will never condone with all the (alleged) threats the author received on her page because that is taking it too far, I just hope it was none of our followers. However, I do not blame those that spoke their mind on how they felt about the way the whole book went down.
I have not been in this fandom as long as some of my friends have but I have been a part of it long enough to have been able to discuss the series with people I consider dear friends now. These friends of mine have become like sisters to me and I am extremely grateful to have them in my life and this is the ONLY thing that this series brought me.
I have never voiced in public about the continuity issues that arose in many of the books, for instance when Clancy died in Dead to the World, only to be brought back from the dead, just to die all over again in a later book; DAG (Dead and Gone). I even defended the author in some of these cases even though I knew what people were saying happened to be true. I have gallantly defended Sookie as well from members of the author’s own forum and that only got me kicked out. Now I wish I had never done so, at least defended the author that is.
I ignored the fact that she let a fan write emails between two of her characters, I would have been territorial about this. It says a lot that this same person turned out to be her continuity editor (bang up job she did huh?). I never would have let a fan anywhere near my literary work……..EVER! There are so many things I could have said, but I was not going to be one of those fans that tried to tell her how to write her book series, or that she was writing it wrong and her characters were now OOC. I was being nice because I genuinely believed she was going to take Sookie to the place we all felt she was going and we ended up with shit for character growth because she had no fight left in her for what she truly wanted out of life. What a way to bring down your protagonist Charlaine! BRAVO!
I am going to let all of it out now because I still managed to read the last book in what used to be my favorite series, despite what had been leaked (which was a lot and not just the ending), I just had to read it for myself. I am getting my ‘entitled reader’ badge out and wearing it with pride.
As I was reading this book last night, I truly wondered who in the hell all these characters were – for I did not recognize any of them because they were all so vastly different from the other books in the series. I felt as if I was stuck in the Twilight Zone and could not make my way back out.
THE OTHER POV’S
I thought hearing from other people in the books would be a great idea because it would be nice to get a different perspective from someone other than Sookie, but it was just wasted space. I would have loved to have known what was going on in Eric’s head since it appeared to be so much a part of what was on Sookie’s mind. Instead, we got Cope, Tyrese and the, well not THE Devil but A Devil! *rolls eyes* Cope wants to prosper, Tyrese wants his Gyspy Kidd to love him, (awww ain’t that sweet?) and Cope gets a bonus since he brought another soul. He wants the Cluviel Dor for the stupidest reason ever, to get his daughter back! Sookie already expelled it’s magic, sorry Cope you are assed out! Cope and Tyrese get theirs in the end, one with HIV and the other becomes a slave of some kind to vampires, notably Pam; the new Sheriff of Area 5. I cannot even begin to tell you how boring this part of the story was and it turns out it was just filler as well.
THE BIG MURDER SET UP
The prologue was really much ado about nothing in the grand scheme of things. Besides, the Devil that was not the Devil, there were two (supposed) mystery men siting on the beach in Baja having a mysterious conversation about one Miss Stackhouse. I believe the author described them throughout the book as the ‘medium man’ and the ‘tall man’ (until she decided to reward us with the information of who they really were as if it was hard to figure out) as if it were some big mystery. Arlene is bailed out of jail by ‘medium man’ and they get into a car with ‘tall man’. They want her to just simply talk to Sookie at Merlotte’s where people can see her and for her to steal a scarf from Sookie’s home so they can kill Arlene with it and BOOM Sookie gets the blame!
Arlene has never been more stupid in her life, R.I.P. Arlene, you were nothing but a bad plot device! Dumb and Dumber (Read Steve Newlin and Johan Glassport) were revealed to be working for…wait for it…DUN DUN DUN…..CLAUDE! It seems Niall knew a traitor in the land of Fae would let Claude out of the portal, back into human world where Claude’s punishment would truly begin. Well, thank you very fucking much Great-Grandfather Niall for putting my life in danger and I love you too! All three men get what is coming to them, death! NEXT!
WHERE OH WHERE HAS THE VIKING GONE?
Eric threw the equivalent of a vampire temper tantrum by Sookie’s use of the CD. Well, this is according to Bill ‘I can do no wrong’ Compton who Sookie all of sudden seems to trust over any other.
Sure, this was the Eric the author has written over the years, the vampire that has lived for a 1000 years by circumventing the vampire political system to give himself enough power to stay in his own little corner of the world. Sookie is summoned to Fangtasia by Karin for the divorce. The night before Eric paid a visit to her house (when he was left to his own devices for an hour) to warn her that “No matter what happens in public-no matter what, don’t doubt that I love you and care about about your welfare…as much as I am able”.
She was completely blindsided and this was the first major thing that the author did wrong to Sookie, she took her choices away, same as she did with Eric. After this is over, Bill is on her porch and she thinks about having sex with him to get back at Eric. I am not even going to touch that one with a ten-foot pole except to say WHAT THE FUCK?
Eric goes to see Sookie at her house after the divorce and it soon turns nasty. Sookie greets him with “What the fuck are you doing here?” and from there it just goes from bad to worse. This is where Eric is totally out of character and operation ‘Character Assassination’ begins.
Well, Sookie rightfully rescinds Eric’s invitation. Who wouldn’t? This particular exchange pissed me off because it goes against past narrative and everything we had read previously. When it comes to Eric saying he regrets his decision to not turn her against her will, I guess the author forgot that her character had this to say on the subject:
“But that’s not going to happen to me. And you won’t ever turn me.” I was absolutely serious.
“No. I won’t ever force you into subservience. And I will never turn you, since you don’t want it.”
“Even if I’m going to die, don’t turn me. I would hate that more than anything.”
“I agree to that. No matter how much I may want to keep you.”
What happened to “She won’t win”? I was hoping for an all-out; no-holds barred scene to fight for his freedom, with Sookie by his side, and instead we get Eric surrendering and acting like a dick. I wanted this: “Without looking at me, Eric reached back, and I stood to slide my hand into his. Time to close ranks”. Sookie (DL p 82). Why did I want this? The answer is quite simple, because the author put the idea into our heads.
In the end, Eric leaves for Oklahoma under some conditions, most of which have to do with Sookie. He agrees to marry Freyda and be with her for two hundred years rather than the customary (and required) one hundred years under the absolute condition that Sookie never be harmed by any vampire, “Not harassed, not tasted, not killed, not made a servant.” Karin, Eric’s other child, is to guard Sookie for a whole year to make sure that Eric’s condition is adhered to. Apparently, this was the only reason that his other daughter was brought into the mix, to be a bodyguard. This is just more filler.
I would not get too excited for Eric’s gallant move as Pam decides to tell Sookie how it is by offering her some advice.
Pam:“Sookie, take my advice,” Pam said. “I’m going to give it to you for free. This was not ‘nice’ of Eric. This was Eric protecting what used to be his, to show Freyda that he is loyal and protects his own. This is not a sentimental gesture.”
Eric could not bring his children to Oklahoma with him, he had to sever all ties with his former life. Sookie is banned from Oklahoma under penalty of death and Felipe banned her from Fangtasia. Eric is not allowed to be around Sookie, especially alone. Charlaine Harris tied up what could have been something good between Sookie and Eric with a nice, neat FUCK YOU bow and now Eric has to live out two hundred years as a SEX slave, the same way he began his vampire life, HOW FUCKING SAD! Eric deserved better than what he got. He basically ended up alone, losing everything he had gained and with nothing to show for it.
“Eric is unfortunate in that people want to take him down a peg…including his own Maker”.
Charlaine Harris, 2013.
You would know since you are his ‘Maker’ Charlaine.
Guess who gets to stay in Bon Temps and stalk Sookie’s woods for the rest of his immortal life? Bill!
SOOKIE AND THE CLUVIEL DOR AKA DEUX TIME MACHINE
Erase the image of Bill and replace it with Sam and you have the ending of Dead Ever After! If you think Eric was the only one who received a raw deal from the Maker, think again because Sookie got it just as bad. I have to be honest, I was wondering if this Sookie was the same Sookie I had been reading for 12 books. I needed to play a quick game of “Where in the world is Sookie Stackhouse” because she was not in Bon Temps.
I understand a lot has happened to her in the last couple of years but I was missing the fight in Sookie. She literally had no energy to fight anymore for what she wanted. In the beginning of the book, her mind is on Eric and her love for him but it feels detached and off base. I could tell it was time for another ‘Operation Character Assassination’ and it would only get worse from here. Sookie spent the first 1/3 of the book talking about her love for Eric and then poof, it was gone, just like that. I guess all one needed was a Cluviel Dor AKA DEUX TIME MACHINE, to turn off those feelings and start them up for another man.
Before I get into that steaming pile of shit, do you remember how Sookie barely had any friends she could truly count on? Oh, that changed as well and seemingly out of nowhere. She is no longer considered ‘crazy Sookie’ to anyone in the town of Bon Temps. Sookie is a loveable person but no one has every come in droves before to help her, the only people she could count on were herself and the vampires who helped make her what she is today.
Sookie ending up with Sam for any length of time is not fair to Sookie. I find it really OOC of Sookie in light of all her declarations of love for Eric. Where was the buildup for Sam? If the author wanted to believe in a Sookie/Sam scenario at the end of the series, she should have done a better job of convincing everyone. I felt as if everything that had been said and done was just filler. I feel as if Sam was nothing but a rebound and everyone involved deserved more than what they got. Sookie, herself said she wanted to take it slow and make sure it was not a rebound but that was how it felt to me.
I really got tired of reading about how Sam had always been there for her? I thought to myself, really? Are we talking about the same Sam who treated her like a child and yelled at her for things she had done, leaving her in tears. He was not in Dallas, Rhodes, New Orleans or when Neave and Lochlan kidnapped and tortured her. He was never at her bedside when she recovered from any of her injuries.
I am not going to go over the details of the sex with Sam, you can read that for yourself but I will leave you with this image and a quote from the book.
“The tanning lotion and the sweat meant we slid against each other like seals.”
Do you all remember when Sookie was concerned that the Blood Bond between her and Eric were responsible for her feelings? Here is the part in “Dead Ever After” that pissed me off the most because it goes against everything Sookie stands for.
Sookie: “Would we have ended up making the best love ever if we both hadn’t been altered by the magic of the cluviel dor, if Sam had never died and I had never brought him back? I don’t know and I don’t care.”
Charlaine Harris, Dead Ever After, page 311, Ace Books 2013
The whole Blood Bond business was spread out over 5 books and Sookie cared about that so much to the point that she sought magical means to find out her true feelings. We were overjoyed for Sookie when the BB was broken and Sookie knew that she loved Eric ‘all on her own’. It really mattered to her because she did not want to be manipulated by any magical means!
Now, after the use of the CD, she does not care if she has been altered. I felt bad for my friend Sookie as all her ‘Maker’ could find to give her for a Happily Ever After is a re-gifted crock up. In the end, it is ambiguous as to whether or not she will be still be with Sam by Christmas if at all but one thing is certain, Sookie Stackhouse deserved better.
It is true that it is a writer’s job to take the reader on a journey in the manner in which they see fit but it has to makes sense. If the writer takes readers on a journey that coincides with the past narrative, then readers would not have a problem with what Ms. Harris wrote. However, if certain things are said and done that go against an already established narrative (as in the case with this final book) then we have major problems.
I may not be not ‘entitled’ to the ending I wanted for Sookie but I was ‘entitled’ to a story that made sense. Dead Ever After did not deliver. It was not the leak that spoiled the last book for me, it is what was written that did it for me and that was the writer. This was character assassination at its best. We were all manipulated by the author, Bill, Eric, and Sam lovers alike. Sookie is not the only one who got the shaft.
In a world full of terror and horror, I read to escape from my world into another and if I cannot trust the author to take me away, then he/she does not need my money. It is for this reason that I will never read another book from this author ever again. Tell me, my fellow book readers, would you? There is a quote from the Night Huntress Series that I believe is very fitting for how all readers are feeling:
“See, Don, I have this question, and I hope you’ll be honest with me.”
He pulled at the end of his eyebrow. “I think you know you can count on my honesty.”
“Can I?” I asked with an edge. “All right, then tell me: How long have you been fucking me?” “That caused him to stop tugging his brow. “I don’t know what you’re saying—” “Because if I was going to fuck you,” I interrupted, “I’d get a bottle of gin, some Frank Sinatra music…and a crash cart for the heart attack you’d have. But you, Don, you’ve been fucking me for years now, and I haven’t gotten any liquor, music, flowers, candy, or anything!”
I have never felt this let-down by an author before – simply because I think she underestimated the power the characters had over her readers and she failed miserably to give them an ending that was worthy of a true Happily Ever After. With that being said, to say that we were disappointed with the book is a major understatement and we feel betrayed. Hell, there is always fanfiction. We highly encourage our readers to give the fanfiction a try, it just might help you get over this nightmare of a book.
This stunning painting below is how we believe “Dead Ever After” should have ended because it is where the author was leading us before she appeared to get amnesia…
*Image above made by none other than KittRose @KittRose*
Thank you for your beautiful artwork, it was still well worth it!