Tuesday, July 12th 2011

Review: A Touch of Dead, Charlaine Harris.

Publisher:Gollancz
Publication Date: August 19, 2010
Received From: Bought
Pages: 208
ISBN: 9780575094444  

Blurb:
Meet Sookie Stackhouse!

Sookie Stackhouse is everybody’s favourite cocktail waitress: a cute, bubbly blonde. . . who can read minds. But Sookie’s far from being the only person in Bon Temps, Lousiana with a handicap, what with the local vampire population demanding their unhuman rights and weres fighting for territory… In fact, Bon Temps is a pretty lively place these days!

A Touch of Dead collects together all the Sookie Stackhouse short stories in one gorgeous volume, and showcases the writing talents of international bestseller Charlaine Harris.

A Touch of Dead is a collection of five short Sookie Stackhouse stories. The short stories included in this edition have all been published before in other anthologies which means there’s the chance that an avid Sookie Stackhouse reader could have come across some, if not all, of these stories before. Those who haven’t read these short stories before will love them but this doesn’t mean those who have, won’t appreciate having them compacted into this short, well-presented book.

A Touch of Dead begins with an introduction from the series author Charlaine Harris. This introduction helps put each story into chronological order, which is useful for working out where the characters and story fit into the Sookie Stackhouse series as a whole. Each of the five short stories are a light and easy read for fans of the series. However, they could be read without prior reading of the series, perhaps as an introduction, as each one successfully stand independent.

The stories included are; ‘Fairy Dust’, ‘Dracula Night’, ‘One Word Answer’, ‘Lucky’ and ‘Gift Wrap’.

‘Fairy Dust’ takes place after the events in Dead to the World. It focuses on the fairy triplets Claude, Claudine and Claudette. Sookie Stackhouse uses her telepathic ability in order to find out who is responsible for the murder of one of the fairy triplets. It was a light-hearted read which I thoroughly enjoyed. I especially liked to learn more about Claude and Claudine and fairies in general. Sookie’s wit remains present, which is what I love most about her.

In ‘Dracula Night’, Sookie receives an invite to the celebration of Prince Dracula’s birthday, from Eric Northman. She agrees to attend and is surprised to find out that Eric is somewhat a fanatic when it comes to Dracula. Unexpected events occur when the person who claims to be Dracula himself shows up. For me, it was great to see the usually calm and collected Eric Northman acting out of character and being a little neurotic. Pam, Eric’s second-in-command, is present along with her witty side comments.

‘One Word Answer’ is the short story which I’d been wanting to read ever since I read ‘Definitely Dead’, book six in the Sookie Stackhouse series. While reading this book, I felt as though I’d missed something as Sookie’s cousin Hadley had died and I had no recollection of when, where or how. This is the story which I was missing. In ‘One Word Answer’ Sookie is doing some late-night gardening with Bubba when some guest arrive at her house in a limo. Mr. Cataliades, a lawyer, steps out of the limo to inform Sookie of her cousins death. His visit reveals more disturbing information as it progresses. This short story is the only one of the five which I deem as essential to the Sookie Stackhouse series. ‘One Word Answer’ is simple, straight-forward and answers the questions a lot of fans of the series might have. It’s definitely worth reading.

‘Lucky’ follows the progress of Sookie and her witch roommate Amelia, as they try to discover who has stolen files from insurance agent Greg Aubert. The aspect I loved the most about this tale is that the element of mystery I have grown to love from the book series, was present. Sookie and Amelia have to follow a number of clues in order to find out the culprit. A good read!

Finally, the last short story is ‘Gift Wrap’. It’s Christmas Eve and Sookie is down in the dumps as she’s all alone. In search of something to do she decides to take a walk. She comes across an injured Were and insists that she takes him to her home to tend to his wounds. This stranger adds a bit of festive magic to her night. This was one of my favourite of the short stories. It was fun, light-hearted and well worth the read. I wasn’t expecting the twist at the end but absolutely loved it!

Overall, this collection as a whole is fun. It offers fans of the Sookie Stackhouse series more Sookie – which is always great. It’s also great to read in between books. I’d definitely recommend.

One Response to “Review: A Touch of Dead, Charlaine Harris.”

  1. Miss. Lucinda Fountain says:

    Thank you for such an informative and helpful review! I am not usually a fan of short stories or a collection of stories. but this does actually sound quite good.

Leave A Reply