Dead as a Doornail
Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mystery Book 5
Written by Charlaine Harris
Narrated by Johanna Parker
Listening Time: 10 hours, 2 minutes
Publisher: Recorded Books (May 6, 2005)
Sookie Stackhouse works at Merlotte’s Bar & Grill in Bon Temps, Louisiana. She doesn’t have too many friends, since her ability to read minds tends to keep people away, until she meets vampire Bill Compton, his boss Eric Northman, and their undead community. Sookie cannot read vampires and her ability to read other “supes” is limited.
Sookie is leaving work late one evening when a shot rings out and shape-shifter Sam Merlotte falls to the ground. Since Sam knew of no one who wanted him dead, Sookie begins to wonder if the shooting might be related to shape-shifters. After all, a were-fox had recently been shot and killed. Sookie’s suspicions carry more credibility when were-panther Calvin Norris is shot leaving for work. She is compelled to visit him in the hospital to help pave the way to better relations with those were-panthers who live in neighboring Hotshot. Sookie’s brother Jason was recently kidnapped and bitten repeatedly by a were-panther jealous of his dating Crystal Norris, which means he may change into a panther at the next full moon. When Sookie sees Jason’s eyes start to change, she knows he’ll change this full moon and begins to worry that the shooter might go after him. Calvin has even suggested Jason might be the sniper, since Jason might be bitter over being bitten.
With Sam hobbling on his wounded leg, he asks Sookie to find him help bartending at Merlotte’s. It wouldn’t hurt if this person could also act as bouncer if things get dicey as they had recently when a very uncouth vampire showed up with Sookie’s friend Tara Thornton. She turns to Eric, the vampire who runs Fangtasia in Shreveport, and not the werewolves, since they are part of the shape-shifting community. Eric sends his newest employee, Charles Twining, to help Sam in exchange for room and board and a future favor. With no place to spend the day, Charles becomes Sookie’s house guest so he can reside in the private space vampire Bill hollowed out beneath her house. It’s fortunate that Charles is there when Sookie’s home catches fire. .
Sookie learns of the death of the werewolf packmaster. Alcide, the werewolf who had escorted Sookie around Jackson, Mississippi not too long ago, calls her to let her know and to ask her to attend the funeral with him. Since the funeral is also the beginning of the campaign to choose a new packmaster, Alcide hopes to make a statement by escorting Sookie.
Things go from bad to worse when the sniper sets his sights on Sookie. It’s time to stake out parking lots all over town to catch this determined shooter. By book’s end, Sookie is overwhelmed with requests of and favors owed to so many supernatural beings. Thankfully, author Charlaine Harris has expertly laid a clear path for Sookie. The story certainly twisted around many issues and people and many of the communities to which Sookie has become part. Narrator Johanna Parker lends yet another voice to the many in her repertoire living in and around Bon Temps, Louisiana.