An Easy Death Review
Title: An Easy Death (Gunnie Rose, #1)
Author: Charlaine Harris
Publication Date: October 1, 2018
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Blurb: From Charlaine Harris, the beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Sookie Stackhouse series -- which became the True Blood television sensation -- comes a new thriller that presents a chilling alternative history of the United States where everyone believes in magic-but no one's sure they can trust it.
After the assassination of FDR in the 1930s, the US collapses and is picked off by the UK, Canada, Mexico, and Russia. Gunnie Lizbeth Rose has been hired by a pair of Russian sorcerers as both their local guide and muscle through East Texas as they search for a distant relative of an infamous sorcerer whose bloodline can help save their emperor-in-exile as an ever increasing number of assassins tries to stop them.
When I learned that Charlaine Harris was coming out with a new book I was at work, on the floor, and literally squeaked with joy. My manager got a laugh out of that one… along with a few customers. Harris is one of my favorite authors, I fell in love with her blunt style writing when I was 15 and have never stopped. The Sookie Stackhouse series is one of my favorites and is probably the reason I now love huge book series.
I truly love the setting of this book and look forward to the rest of the series. It was something completely different from what I’m used to. This strange mix of old school and modern thinking with the altered history line make the framework very unique. If nothing else, read this because of the strange/amazing backdrop! And because of Lizbeth Rose! She is such an amazing character. She is strong, flawed, and so very straight forward. She is just one of those women that you want to be like! Harris has a marvelous way of writing her female characters- making you adore them and also respect them and kinda want to be friends with them!
However, I did not love this book, a fact that makes me sad 😩. The plot is interesting and could have been great but the story is over detailed to the point of making it inconsistent because those small little details contradicted each other at times. And the storyline could be a little confusing- things that didn’t seem important were emphasized more than they needed to be. There is also a lot of drawn out situations that were built up for many chapters that were then quickly resolved. This pattern kept repeating.
Also, I know the Great Mrs. Harris can write amazing sex scenes, as seen in the Sookie Stackhouse series. There are no spectacular sex scenes that would be worth writing home about (not that you would write home about great sex scenes- or maybe you would…?). In my opinion, it is a missed opportunity to really show the connection between the two main characters when the chemistry does not seem all that strong or really even there. Plus, Eli and Lizbeth go from 0 to 60 in the relationship department and then it’s kind of a strange back and forth. This sudden togetherness almost comes out of nowhere and is a strange breakaway from the rest of the story.
Eli is a great male lead but like most of Harris’ writing we only get one point of view- Lizbeth’s. So, that leaves Eli as this kind of an enigma. Lizbeth doesn’t know what he is thinking so in turn, you don’t know what he is thinking. It makes it hard to connect with him as a main character. The problem I have with this is that I did not have this problem with the Sookie Stackhouse series, which was written in the same way. To me, the entire story seemed to be an overview, just missing its meat and potatoes.
Harris has this very straight forward way of writing. It is not stylized or in prose in any way. So it can be a little off putting at first. The only way to enjoy her books is to get used to the way she writes and once you do, you find you don’t even notice the bluntness anymore. With her other works I found this very easy to do. I would be enchanted within pages- almost like I was thrusted into the world she had created. Yet, with An Easy Death I did not find myself enchanted- I knew I was reading the entire time, if that makes sense…
All in all, I think that the future books in this may be worth reading. Once all the kinks are out I believe this series could be absolutely incredible.