Charlaine Harris’s new Sookie Sackhouse novel, All Together Dead ,hits the bookstore shelves this Tuesday*. Perhaps because of this I was inspired to catch up on her previous novels while at the library this past week. I brought home both Grave Surprise and the anthology “My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding.”
Grave Surprise is the second Harper Connely mystery. I had been looking for this at the library since it came out last October, mostly just keeping an eye out for it in the “new fiction” display. Finally I gave in and pulled it up on their computer to see if it was in and was surprised to find it in the actual mystery section instead of sci-fi or just plain fiction. They ARE mysteries, but with the premise being that of a young woman once struck by lightening who can now find dead bodies and discern the cause of death, well, I expected to find it elsewhere I suppose.
The anthology of short stories I am still working on, but it has been utterly delightful thus far. I started with the authors I was familiar with, including Harris’s own offering “Tacky” set in the Sookie-verse and one by Rachel Caine called “Dead Man’s Chest” which featured some particularly swashbuckling pirates. The other’s I was iffier about. I have heard of Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files and P.N. Elrod’s Vampire detective series. I’ve even read a romance by Sherrilyn Kenyon in anticipation of meeting her at a convention once, but have never pursued or followed any of them.
The Harry Dresden offering was fun, the characters gettting hitched were clearly featured as secondary cast in other novels and yet the tale stood on it’s own. I’m almost tempted to pick some the Dresden Files now, though I have heard they can be repetetive when consumed it large quantities. Many series have that particular problem, though, so I won’t let it stand against them. P.N. Elrod’s tale of a wedding character who meets an Elvis impersonator doesn’t sound very supernatural, but has enough twists to qualify and is funny on top of it all. Again, it’s enough to make me want check out her series (no matter how tired I’ve become of vampires) as the quality of story telling and characterization is top notch.
There are five more short stories in the collection that I’ve yet to peruse, but I can reccomend it already based on the strenghts of the four I’ve read. If any of the authors I’ve mentioned are on your radar at all it’s not to be missed. Heck, it’s not to be missed period if the title alone can make you smile…
*There’s a lot of great stuff coming out on May 1st, including Sherwood Smith’s Senrid, Kelly Armstrong’s No Human’s Involved, Meg Cabot’s Pants on Fire, the Lackey/Mallory When Darkness Falls and of course the aforementioned All Together Dead. When it rains it pours!