ProsFast-paced and interesting plotlines
Continues plots established in the first novel of the series
Begins the Sookie/Eric relationship
ConsBegins the demise of Sookie and Bill's relationship
Kills off Lafayette
Full ReviewThe second novel in the Southern Vampire/Sookie Stackhouse series by author Charlaine Harris finds the main character, Sookie Stackhouse working for Vampire Sheriff Eric Northman to help find a missing vampire in Dallas, Texas, while she is also "listening in" to figure out who murdered her friend and coworker, Lafayette.
The book opens with Sookie and her coworkers finding Lafayette's dead body in Andy Bellefleur's car outside of Merlotte's bar. Soon after, Sookie and her boyfriend, vampire Bill Compton, are summoned by Eric to Shreveport, but Sookie is attacked by a Maenad on the way there. Eric calls in a special doctor to heal Sookie. He then reveals that she and Bill must go to Dallas to help find a missing vampire. Sookie agrees to use her telepathic skills to help interview the humans suspected to be involved in the vampire disappearance, but only if no humans will be harmed as a result of her questioning. She eventually learns of an anti-vampire organization, the Fellowship of the Sun, that is behind the vampire disappearance. By going under cover and putting herself at risk, Sookie is able to infiltrate the organization and free the vampire. As soon as this plot line is tidied up, Sookie and Bill return home to figure out who killed Lafayette.
Living Dead in Dallas is a fast paced read that introduces a lot of new characters and continuous plot lines to the Sookie-verse. The existence of werewolves and other "mythical" creatures appear. These characters all become very important later in the series. Another very important element of this book is the establishment of the Sookie/Eric blood bond. In Sookie's world, when a human shares the blood of a vampire, there is an emotional connection between the two. For a while afterwords, the human and the vampire can feel each other's emotions and find each other when one of them is in danger. Eric tricks Sookie into sucking some of his blood by pretending to be in mortal danger. Bill is very upset by this because he knows that Eric wants to have Sookie all to himself. Eric values her telepatic ability and also finds her very attractive. Sookie is appaled at the idea of a relationship with Eric because she is desperately in love with Bill, her first real relationship. There is a bond between Sookie and Bill from sharing blood, but her bond with Eric soon begins intruding into her thoughts.
In ClosingThis is a great second novel for the series. It continues, but also offers conflict to, the continuous storyline of Sookie's love interests, and has a couple of other mysteries to solve as well. Living Dead in Dallas is a definite building block to the various novels in the Sookie Stackhouse series. This book is also the basis for the second season of HBO's True Blood series based on the Southern Vampire Series.