This Monday I am very happy to welcome my another Internet friend, The Red Witch, who very kindly agreed to review for me “Deadlocked” by Charlaine Harris. You see, we’ve been both fans of the series and we’ve discussed it from time to time. I think The Red Witch would do it more justice than me (it is, after all, a paranormal romance).
Let me only mention that The Red Witch, a very clever, scholarly and funny lady (yes, it is possible), writes her own great blog entitled Distracted From the Now
. Isn’t it a nice name? The content is even nicer – go and visit and you’ll see!
Ok, here my ramblings end, let’s progress to the review itself:
Deadlocked is the twelfth volume of the very popular Southern Vampire series by Charlaine Harris that was turned into the wildly popular HBO series True Blood. Originally, she had a contract to write ten books in the series but in the fall before the tenth book came out, Harris revealed that she had agreed to write three more books. It is difficult to say how she would have written it had there not been a commitment to write three more, but the ninth book introduced Sookie’s vampire lover’s maker, a Roman from the time of Christ named Appius Livius Ocella.
Eric, a Viking, was turned by Appius around the turbulent time of the North’s conversion to Christianity, although Eric was a heathen at the time he became a vampire. In the ninth book, Dead and Gone, Harris gave out some of Eric’s backstory(including that he had been married and had children) but neglected to identify what country he was from. He was also given Northman as a surname but it really only describes what he is; he should have been called Eric So-and-So’s-son but I am nitpicking. Most people would not know or care.
In Dead in the Family, the tenth book, Appius showed up at Sookie’s house with Eric’s ‘brother’ and he made a cryptic pronouncement just before his final death that Sookie would never keep Eric. In the eleventh book, it became increasingly clear what Appius meant by this and the twelfth book Deadlocked is largely concerned with the problem of Appius having betrothed Eric to a vampire queen. In spite of Sookie knowing that Eric cannot disobey a direct order from his maker, thanks to the strength of the blood bond with Eric and the odd feelings it gave Sookie when Appius showed up at her house, Sookie feels Eric has betrayed her by not outright refusing the queen. Harris wrote in Dead and Gone:
|Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin) is the main character of the series. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
“As I felt his fear roll through me, I understood that Eric had to physically perform whatever Ocella ordered him to do. Before that it had been an abstract concept. Now I realized that if Ocella ordered Eric to kill me, Eric would be compelled to do it.”
That was in Book 9, by Book 12 Sookie would forget all that and insist that Eric break off the engagement because Appius was dead, even though Freyda was a powerful queen whom it would be risky to offend and Eric is in trouble with his own king, Felipe, for having killed second in command Victor Madden. (Book 11)
Complicating the situation is the fact that Sookie’s fairy great- grandfather Niall likes Eric and approves of him and had revealed to him that Sookie had a way out for both of them – the mysterious cluviel dor, a magical fairy object that Sookie’s fairy grandfather had given to her human grandmother as a token of his love. It could be used for one wish, one wish only, and must be used for someone you love.
Eric is too proud to ask Sookie to use the object to save him because he thinks, if she loves him, then she will offer. She thinks that he should not need saving and if he loved her, he would simply refuse to marry Freyda although she should know how dangerous and impossible that is for Eric as well as herself.
Sookie is getting older and her friends are all settling down to married life and starting families. She clearly longs for a child but this is something that Eric cannot give her. In spite of her desire to avoid vampire and shapeshifter politics, those politics draw her in against her will and threaten her life once again.
At the end, we find out how Sookie chose to use the cluviel dor(a choice which no doubt left some fans very unhappy) but the difficulty between the two lovers would not be resolved. That will have to wait until next year when the last book comes out. Harris has announced that it will be called Dead Ever After and has even mentioned that we will be introduced to Eric’s other progeny who is named Karin. I, for one, can hardly wait.
|Ancient Roman Marble (Photo credit: Swamibu)