One side note to all of this was that I took my mother back to the airport on Saturday so she could fly back to Hawaii. I was dreading it, and have missed her terribly. My mother means the world to me, so sending her back hit me pretty hard. Although I'm used to being a tough cookie and taking care of myself, it was nice having her here. Now, I have to count down the days until Christmas! In the meantime, I actually calmed myself by finishing Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse book 7, All Together Dead, as well as J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (which sent me into a crying jag when Harry fought Voldermort), but I'll save that review for a little later. Needless to say, these books helped ease the sadness a little, which makes me love books even more!
Review: I have to say, that as a balm for a troubled soul this weekend, this was the perfect get away trip, all packaged in one book. Even if I had not been in a position where I desperately needed an escape read, this seventh in the series still would have been appealing and a great read. Where previous installments left me looking towards the future, knowing that I was being set up to like or not like certain characters, I didn't care as much in this installment. Sookie felt stronger to me, and her ability to keep her head on straight (so to say), made me relax and trust that she could get through the vamp summit safely. In that case then, I enjoyed seeing where Charlaine Harris took these familiar characters.
In a strange way, this installment felt like a side story, and yes, like it is a stepping stone to more stories to come. I didn't mind that stepping stone though, and found the vampire trials, vampire entertainment, and new skills Sookie learned with her fellow telepath from a previous novel fun to watch. I can't help that I like Bill, but I also like Eric and Quinn (okay, so maybe not Quinn quite as much). The difference though is in where Sookie is honest with us as readers. Lest I give away too much, it's starting to become evident that she's not being 100% honest about her feelings for one of these characters, maybe because (blood sharing aside...wow, that sounds icky when I write it) she feels more vulnerable to one of these characters whom she is feeling a deeper connection? Yes, I'm hoping that's the case.
Out of the other novels in the series, this was one of my favorites thus far. I liked Sookie's strength, and that it wasn't all about a million different men falling at her feet and coming to save her after every painful battle. In this case, Sookie really seemed to pull herself together, and even managed to do a bit of saving herself! Whether it was her strength that drew me in this time, or the direction that it is headed, I liked this novel and can say that I can see it's going to continue to be a fun ride!
*FTC Disclosure: This review was based off of a personal electronic copy of the novel.