Happy Release Day, Charlaine Harris!

midnight crossroad

The people who are familiar with Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse southern vampire series (or the HBO series True Blood that is based on her books) have some very definite opinions about it. Most of what I’ve heard is total fandom and enthusiasm for the first 10 books or so, lukewarm feelings about 11 and 12, and abject hatred for book 13. Reading some of the reviews for the last book in the series, Dead Ever After, was enough to make me feel profoundly sorry for Ms. Harris. Her situation is a textbook example of how readers or fans can turn into an author’s worst nightmare when the author takes a character in a direction that the readers didn’t want.

Personally, I have only read the first Sookie Stackhouse book and (please don’t throw anything at me)… I was underwhelmed. It was fine. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t really see what all the fuss was about. And around the same time I read that one, a very noisy contingent of fans started squawking on GoodReads and other review sites about much they hated Dead Ever After and they wished they’d never even started the series. So I wasn’t feeling particularly encouraged to carry on with the series after that. But I still felt bad for Ms. Harris, thanks to all the reader backlash, and so I hope this new release and the start of a new trilogy will be a big success for her.

Here is what Ace has to say about Midnight Crossroad:

From Charlaine Harris, the bestselling author who created Sookie Stackhouse and her world of Bon Temps, Louisiana, comes a darker locale—populated by more strangers than friends. But then, that’s how the locals prefer it…

Welcome to Midnight, Texas, a town with many boarded-up windows and few full-time inhabitants, located at the crossing of Witch Light Road and Davy Road. It’s a pretty standard dried-up western town.

There’s a pawnshop (someone lives in the basement and is seen only at night). There’s a diner (people who are just passing through tend not to linger). And there’s new resident Manfred Bernardo, who thinks he’s found the perfect place to work in private (and who has secrets of his own).

Stop at the one traffic light in town, and everything looks normal. Stay awhile, and learn the truth…