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Dead in the Family (Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood, Book 10) Hardcover – May 4, 2010

3.5 out of 5 stars 1,338 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Still reeling from the deaths of her fairy cousin, Claudine, and many others in 2009's Dead and Gone, Sookie Stackhouse struggles with paranormal politics in her entertaining if slow-moving 10th outing. When Claudine's triplet, Claude, appears at her doorstep, Sookie reluctantly allows him to move in. The government threatens two-natures with mandatory registration, and tensions run high in the local Were pack. Then Eric's maker, a Roman named Appius Livius Ocella, arrives without warning, bringing along Alexei Romanov, whom he rescued from the Bolsheviks and turned into a vampire. Though the action often builds too slowly, the exploration of family in its many human and undead variations is intriguing, and Harris delivers her usual mix of eccentric characters and engaging subplots. (May)
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"Mixes humorous Southern-fried fantasy with biting satirical commentary." -- Publishers Weekly

--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood (Book 10)
  • Hardcover: 311 pages
  • Publisher: Ace Books; 1 edition (May 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0441018645
  • ISBN-13: 978-0441018642
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,338 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #203,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Was DITF a good read? Yes. Is it my favorite book of the series? No.

I think after reading Dead and Gone I expected a lot more to come out of DITF. I thought that I would see more of Bill and Sookie working on their relationship. Be that as friends or more. I expected a great deal about Sookie and Eric. I thought that Alcide would play more of a role especially after Tray. I even thought Quinn might show back up. While we got some answers about Eric and Sookie several more were brought to the surface. Bill and Alcide were just glazed over essentially and Quinn was never mentioned. This booked seemed unfinished almost as if it were a stepping stone to the next book.

Several plot lines were introduced bought not resolved. This book could have been magnificent but it wasn't.

The problem I have with this book is that I can't sit here and tell you what BIG thing happened. Several little things were brought about, but no big climax. The story flowed nicely but if felt like it was just a normal Sookie day sitting out in the sun waiting for something bad to happen. While I appreciate that Sookie needs time to recover the story lacked momentum.

As a reader I feel that I've waited a year and I didn't get the fix I needed. It's almost as if my book was missing 200 or so pages. The story I received was nice but I keep looking for the next part.
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Format: Hardcover
Make no mistake -- this is not a perfect book, but as it gets much more right than wrong and is much more in keeping with the earlier Sookie novels in tone, I give it the full 5 stars. There are spoilers herein, so beware!

What it gets right: Eric, Sookie gets her moxie back (mostly), Eric gets even more complex character development, the progression in Eric and Sookie's ability to express their love for each other, Bill getting his own Happily Ever After in such an unpredictable but welcome way to tie up his storyline, the return of some of the humor that endeared the early books to so many fans, the deepening friendship between Pam and Sookie, Jason maturing and acting the part of big brother for once, Claude's protectiveness of Sookie, and the more leisurely pacing overall.

I have long been a fan of Eric/Sookie, and I was definitely pleased with how things progress between them in this book. The mutual admissions of love were lovely (from Eric: "When my eyes open, I think of you, of every part of you" and "If this is not true love, it's as close as anyone gets"). It seems that Sookie is less and less concerned about the blood bond and is now acknowledging to herself and Eric that her feelings are as genuine as his. They laugh, banter, flirt, argue (and make up!), support each other, share emotions and secrets, express their love and protect each other fiercely.

I must say that I was surprised in reading the more negative reviews to see how many were penned by professed Eric/Sookie fans, who were lamenting the lack of sizzle and romantic tension. It seems to me that there is still sizzle between them, but the sexual tension is naturally tamped down to some extent now that the chase is over and they have settled into a relationship. I think Ms.
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Format: Hardcover
"Dead in the Family" has a very appropriate title -- all sorts of family members pop up, and not just for Sookie. Charlaine Harris still can whips up a pleasant warm Southern vibe for her not-so-urban fantasies, but unfortunately this latest novel isn't quite up to her usual standards: it's basically a mass of fluffy in-between storylines that rarely go anywhere.

Just after Amelia leaves for New Orleans, Sookie's cousin Claude appears at her home and asks to move in with her, since he's a lone fairy who needs the presence of another. Bill is suffering from silver poisoning AND depression, and Sookie has to find a "relative" who can help him. And Eric has some family issues as well -- his maker Appius Livius Ocella shows up on Sookie's doorstep, along with his "son"/lover Alexei.

To make matters worse, unidentified fairies and weres have been crossing Sookie's land,, and it also turns out that there's a dead body buried back there. And it's not Debbie Pelt's. Now Sookie must unravel the secrets plaguing the supernaturals around her, or there might be even more deaths.

"Dead in the Family" feels like Charlaine Harris wrote half-a-dozen short stories, ripped them apart at the seams, and then sewed them back together. There's no central plot to this book, just a mass of fluffy subplots woven loosely around each other. And some of the stories don't really have much point to them, so the book feels cluttered and fragmented.

The saving grace is that some of those subplots ARE interesting, mainly the ones that develop the characters -- the whole subplot involving Bill and the elderly Caroline Bellefleur is quite sweet and touching, and it should be interesting to see where Harris takes the religious/political pressure on the weres.
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22 Comments 312 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of the Sookie books and of the development of Sookie and Eric's relationship overall. I pre-ordered this book and anticipated it with so much joy and excitement...only to have it arrive, read through it in a day (my usual with this series), and emerge finding myself severely disappointed.

I'm left with the feeling that there was no one main storyline, but a bunch of little intermingled story lines. I lacked the fervent compulsion to continue reading that I had experienced with the other books in the series. I was disappointed with the amount of "Page Time" given to Eric/Sookie interactions, and to Sookie's recovery, and Sookie's first visit to Eric's house, and...on and on it goes. The ending felt a little anticlimactic to me as well, as if I had just read a 310 page preface to Book 11. It was like the roadside attractions you'd see in between a tour of NYC and Miami...just bland compared to the true metropolitan gems in the trip.

Another reviewer stated here that they had read better fanfiction than this, and I can't help but agree. It's a harsh statement to make, but it seems almost like the author's lost her passion to tell this story.

Here's hoping Ms. Harris will troll some fanfic sites before writing Book 11, or will fall back in love with Sookie and Eric and craft another masterwork of fiction, like the earlier books in the series! I'll still read the next book, but I won't set my hopes as high next time...and I'll keep reading the great Eric / Sookie fanfic out there to tide me over.
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