Year 4, Book 50

50. Dead Until Dark (Sooke Stackhouse #1) by Charlaine Harris
Paul and I started watching the show True Blood on HBO when it started last year. I really enjoyed it, but had never read the series of books that the show is based on. I went back and forth on whether or not I should read them because I didn’t necessarily want to spoil the show for myself by knowing everything that was going to happen by reading the books. I finally read enough stuff about the books saying how good they were and how they were not exactly like the show that I decided to pick up the first two books in the series. I read the first one on my trip to RI this past weekend. I must say that I am so glad that I never read the books first because I probably never would have watched the show. Perhaps I am just a book snob, but I have never read a book aimed at adults that was so poorly written. I’m sure there are worse ones out there, but luckily I’ve never read any of them. The book (at least the first one, the later ones may differ more) was very similar to the TV show in my opinion. Aside from a few minor characters that appear in the book that aren’t in the TV show everything that happens in the book happens in the show. Although on the other hand the show creates a much richer tapestry in my opinion and there are several main characters that are not in the book and some minor characters that are much more fleshed out in the show leading to some additional plot lines as well as more details or slight changes in the ones that are the same. Obviously the basic plot has merit since it is the back bone of the show, which I do like. However I couldn’t really focus on that since having already watched the show I knew basically what was going to happen plotwise. Instead I remained very focused on the pitiful writing style. It totally reminded me of reading a children’s book like The Babysitter’s Club or the Sweet Valley High books I used to read. Not the plot points obviously, but the writing style of the book. I’ve think I’ve read kids books with more depth and a larger vocabulary. Having never read another vampire book other than Twilight, which despite all the horrible things I’ve seen said about its writing I think is ten times better, I don’t know if other books in this genre are comparable or if this is just particularly bad. Or perhaps I just care more about good writing than most people since I’ve seen nothing but raves about this series of books. I’ll just stick to the TV show and for once say that the adaptation is way better than the book. 2 out of 10.

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