Charlaine Harris: All Together Dead

All Together Dead is the 7th book in the Sookie Stackhouse series, and I really wouldn't recommend reading it without having read the first 6 books, because there are a lot of references to things that happened in the past. Anyway, this time, Sookie is one of the very few humans to attend a vampire summit. For some reasons I didn't really understand, lots of other creatures, like Sookie's shapeshifter boyfriend Quinn, will be there too. The vampires are going to perform a lot of ceremonies, among them the trial of Sophie-Anne the vampire queen, who is charged with having permanently killed her husband. But once the summit attendees arrive at their hotel, things start to go wrong: from smaller things, like suitcases that seem to belong to no one to actual attacks. But who is trying to hurt or kill the vampire community?

As always, Sookie's adventures are a pleasure to read. Sookie is one of the very few fictional characters who come across as a real person, which is no small feat considering the fact that this is fantasy and most of the characters are vampires, shapeshifters and other assorted supernatural beings. It's very suspenseful too, and I can hardly wait to read the next book. That said, I hope that there won't be many more ceremonies in Sookie's and the series' future. The overabundance of bizarre vampire and shapeshifter ceremonies and rituals is one of the things that turned me off Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake books, and I don't like them all that much in Sookie's world. It also doesn't seem very plausible to me that such supernatural beings would have firm structures in their lives, much less rituals. This is especially true for the vampires: those characters come from many different centuries and places. Each of them would have lived in a completely different way when they were still mortal; and to me it seems be logical that a person who is turned into a vampire will act in one of two ways: either they'll try to stick to their way of life as far as possible, or they'll go completely wild and do only what they want, when they want it. Either way, there will be anarchy. For vampires, that is. Still, this is a "good" book (Grade B)