I have recently completed the reading of two books by a relatively new author, Charlaine Harris.
Ms. Harris has created a delightful main character in the person of Sookie Stackhouse, a waitress in a little bar in the town of Bon Temp, Louisiana.
Sookie has a gift. At least some people call it that. She can read people's thoughts. That, of course, makes dating relationships really difficult. Until she runs into Bill the Vampire. Bill Compton, to be exact. Sookie falls hard for Bill and also discovers, much to her delight, that she cannot read his mind.
Ms. Harris's mythology creates yet another society where vampires have legal rights. Not so different from Laurell Hamilton's Anita Blake series. However, the similarities pretty much end there. Except for the dating a vampire thing.
The first book is called Dead Until Dark. In it, we are introduced to Sookie and her entourage of family/friends/not-so-friends (anybody named Bellefleur). We are also introduced to Bill Compton the vampire. He soon becomes Sookie's love interest.
On a side note, there is still this problem about how vampires can have sex. No circulation, right? And blood circulation is required to have...well, never mind. You must know what I mean, here. It's just that I've never heard an explanation of how this is possible. But it seems to happen in every story/series that I've gotten hooked on.
Anyway, Bill is soon accepted by most of Sookie's crowd, which includes a shape-shifting boss who owns the bar. In fact, by book two, Living Dead In Dallas, they have begun referring to him as V. B. (Vampire Bill.)
Charlaine Harris writes with a wonderful style that is not so predictable and not as shallow as you might expect from novels of this type. The characters have depth that is developed as the stories move along, and she throws in enough unexpected surprises to keep interest high. I'm pretty sure that I have read each of the books in the span of 2 days. I can honestly say that I didn't want to put them down.
I am anxiously looking forward to reading the third book, Club Dead. There is already a fourth one in hardback, but I can't remember the name right now. But I can't read it, yet, because, hey. You gotta go in order, right?
Next up...The Taking, by Dean Koontz. Independence Day meets Stephen King's "The Mist?"