Top critical review
Reviewed in the United States on May 27, 2011
Luckily, if you're reading the 8th book in a series, you're pretty much committed to it at this point. I don't think this book is "bad" in the sense that it would turn anyone away from a series they have thus far loved, but it's definitely mediocre, especially compared to the other books in the series. If this had been the first book in the series, I probably wouldn't have even finished it, let alone continue reading others.
The problem I had with this book is that it felt like nothing happened, although quite a bit did. Everything felt so sporadic and disjointed that by the end of the book, it felt like what happened at the beginning had to have been part of a different book. There were plenty of interesting things that happened, but they were introduced so sloppily and then ended so abruptly that I just ended up feeling frustrated. The vampire war especially I felt was not given enough time. Some of the characters who died in that war deserved much more than a short mention in conversation. A lot of things that happened seemed like things the characters would never do or agree to, but they happened so that there would be a quick resolution to the situation. I found the last chapter a bit more intriguing than the others, but it was so far removed from the other storylines, like everything else in this book, that it was harder to enjoy. It really should have been the closing chapter of a previous book, since Hadley had nothing to do with anything else here.
This felt like a bunch of short stories all lumped together that had nothing to do with each other except that, naturally, they all had Sookie in them. On top of that, there was no mystery whatsoever. Usually, I'm trying to figure something out while I'm reading, but there was simply nothing to try to figure out here. It almost felt like a first hand narrative of some historical event rather than the present story telling that I've grown accustomed to in these novels. To me, this didn't even feel like a bridge novel to tie up loose ends. It felt like lazy writing, and as a fan, I expect much more than that. Will I continue reading the series? Absolutely. But I pray that the other books are significantly better than this one.