DEADLOCKED: Exclusive Interview with Charlaine Harris

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Charlaine Harris always honors us with a Q & A just after her latest Sookie Stackhouse novel is released. This year is no different. [easyazon-link asin=”1937007448″]Deadlocked[/easyazon-link], which is book 12 in the Southern Vampire Mysteries, debuted this week and we thought it was fantastic, but we had a few questions for Ms. Harris, which she graciously answered for us before she embarked on her tour promoting the book.

Exclusive interview with Charlaine Harris for Deadlocked (Sookie Stackhouse book 12)WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!

True-Blood.net: Even though Sookie was dealing with daily, even hourly, crises, the pace of this book feels deliberately slower. Why? Is it a sign that Sookie is maturing and opting to respond vs. react? A textual representation of the heat of summer?

Charlaine Harris: I’m tempted to say yes, but that would only partially be true. I tried to take my time writing this book because I wanted to be sure I was saying exactly what I meant. And it’s true that Sookie has become more deliberate in her responses.

Sookie’s friends and family are experiencing milestones all around her (relationships, weddings, births), and as a result we see her becoming more introspective about her own future. After everything she’s been through in the past few years, can Sookie ever settle into a “normal” future similar to those around her?

Charlaine: That’s what she wants. I think “similar” is as close as she could get.

How long has Claude been plotting to overthrow Niall? (Love that Sookie felt “wrongness” about him from the beginning.)

Charlaine: Claude has never wished Niall well, but I don’t think he really planned to overthrow Niall because he didn’t think he’d have the opportunity. That’s why he’s been living in the human world. However, he has been strewing discord where he could.

Why did you decide to make Bill’s love for Sookie an open, even jokeworthy non-secret? That scene in Sookie’s yard where Eric predicts the conversation between himself, Pam, Bill, and Sookie was hilarious.

Charlaine: There’s no way that could escape any of the people involved in that scene, so it seemed funnier and more interesting to acknowledge it.

Palomino’s coloring – genius! How far in advance do you plan things like that to use in future plots?

Charlaine: Ahhh . . . not so much. Every now and then I adapt the plot of the current book to use something I wrote in the past. And to give me a fair shake, every now and then I plan like crazy.

Is the point of Sookie being a partner in Merlotte’s that she and Sam are no longer employee/employer? That she’s now pretty much on equal footing with him?

Charlaine: That’s certainly one of the outcomes.

Are you ready for fan reaction to Eric/Sookie/Sam? (We. Are. Giddy!)

CCharlaine: Let me just point out that you haven’t read the last book yet. And I don’t think fan reaction will be universally positive no matter what I write.

What’s left to wrap up in Book 13? Amelia? Mr. Cataliades? Hunter? Sookie’s future?

Charlaine: There’s an incredible amount to wrap up. I don’t think I can even manage it all in one book, and some questions may have to remain unanswered.

What do you hope readers will take away from this novel when they’ve finished reading it?

Charlaine: I hope that readers will be interested in discovering the final resolution of Sookie’s long journey, what her fate and that of those around her will be. But aside from hoping that [easyazon-link asin=”B0072NZZGM”]Deadlocked[/easyazon-link] primes readers for the final Sookie, I hope they enjoy the book simply for the adventure it is. It stands on its own pretty well, and I am very happy with the way it turned out.

We were happy with it too, Charlaine. Once again, thank you for taking a moment with us and for creating the wonderful world of Sookie Stackhouse.

Over-night fan (almost literally) of the Sookie Stackhouse series since early 2008. Co-owner of True-Blood.net. Anxiously anticipating season 6.

22 Comments

  1. Niecey

    May 2, 2012 at 9:21 am

    I read it in one sitting yesterday. It was an ok book, not the best in the series. I liked the outcome however.

  2. Bethany

    May 2, 2012 at 10:57 am

    I can only hope and dream that the “Unanswered” questions left at the end of the series will possibly be answered in a book somewhere down the line??? I have finished Deadlocked (Twice, and 1/2 way through my 3rd time) and think that there are so many unfinished things that, other thank knowing that CH wants to focus on other projects, it is killing me that the series only has one book left. I read these books (all of them) weekly, and just can’t imagine exactly how this is going to come to a close.

    That being said, I think I have been on the mark since the first book in guessing who CH pictures Sookie’s HEA as. IMHO it was proven in Deadlocked. But now I have to wait 354 more days to find out. ARG!!!!!! LOL

  3. Momo

    May 2, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    “CCharlaine: Let me just point out that you haven’t read the last book yet. And I don’t think fan reaction will be universally positive no matter what I write.”

    Like she said “Don’t give too much credits to the end of this book because lots of things will happen in the next one” 🙂 Which is true because like Sookie pointed out “it’ll be a delicate conversation” with Sam.
    It’s always hard when you have to explain to your best make friend you just don’t love him that way. But i hope he’ll stay in her life because she needs him, as a friend, that’s why she did what she did and like Mr C said, the cd could have been used for her self care too. I would have done the same honestly.
    There are so any good hints in this book, many good quote like Sookie watching the black and white movie that after a re-read everything is even more clear but it’s gonna be a looong wait.

  4. Elisha_Q

    May 2, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    “I don’t think I can even manage it all in one book”
    Do I sense a little hint that there might, just might, be book 14 or is it my desperate hopes that I won’t have to say goodbye to Sookie next year ? No mater how many people think that the series have already lost their charm I want more. Please, pretty please with a cherry on top. 🙂

    • Liz

      May 2, 2012 at 1:50 pm

      No, book 13 will be the last. Charlaine is ready to move on to other projects that she’s been wanting to do, and she will leave Sookie in a good place, that much you can count on. As to whether or not Sookie makes an appearance again in the future, who knows? She may wander through one of Charlaine’s new books. But really, Charlaine has mentioned before that she feels that she has told all that she could of Sookie’s story.

      • Elisha_Q

        May 2, 2012 at 4:16 pm

        Guess writing about somebody’s life for 13 years is enough, huh? Probably writers become pretty fed up even with their own characters. At least Charlaine is not killing Sookie, haha 🙂

        • Liz

          May 2, 2012 at 4:48 pm

          I think it’s more like Charlaine has told all she wants to about Sookie’s world. I don’t think she’s tired of her, she just told all that she wanted to.

          • vikingrl

            May 7, 2012 at 8:43 pm

            I think I read somewhere there is a short story coming out involving Hunter, called “An Apple for the Creature”. CH will be stopping the books at book 13, hopefully not the short stories…

  5. Gill D

    May 2, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    “What’s left to wrap up in Book 13? Amelia? Mr. Cataliades? Hunter? Sookie’s future?” This is the question of the moment. CH has hinted that however she ends the series, some readers will not be happy. These were not “girl meets boy, loses boy, gets him back and rides off into the sunset with him” types of books,but rather the development of Sookie who was up against what life has put in her path. So the last book may be Sookie acting on what is best for her.

    I am braced in case her future doesn’t include our favorite brooding vampires (but I really hope that it does!), and like the interviewers, I want to know what happens to the other characters,especially Pam, who is also slowly evolving as a person, and Sam, who has more evolution to do.

  6. Dee

    May 3, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    Lovely interview and Ms. Harris is right that no matter what she writes in Book 13, some will not be happy.

    363 days (approximately) until Book 13 comes out. (Yeah, it’s like that.)

  7. Misyy

    May 3, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    I didn’t care much for this book. I felt like Eric not being around half the time Sookie needed him & her not caching on to the VERY obvious hint that Eric was giving her were serious disappointments for me. I feel like her romance w/Eric has run its course & a relationship w/Sam wouldn’t be exciting enough at this point. There is so much left to wrap up, it would take 400 pages in the next book to do it. Even though I’ll read the last book, I’m not as excited as I was about the others, which is a shame since it’s the last & i’ve devoted time. It seemed like we waited a long time for this book, so I’m hoping the last will be a lot better!

  8. Tracy

    May 4, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    This wasn’t my favorite book. I think the end of Sookie and Eric’s relationship would have been more heartwrenching if they weren’t so mean to each other through the whole book. I missed the heat.

    • Liz

      May 4, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      Tracy, as Ms. Harris said to us, we haven’t read the final book yet. You don’t know if this is the end of Sookie and Eric’s relationship or if it will just change. It’s not over till the last page of “Dead Ever After”. 😉

  9. Sarie

    May 4, 2012 at 6:56 pm

    I agree w/ liz. “dead ever after” seems fairly final to me,… Who do we know to be as selfish as to tether a love between them for all time? A love that would endure should he marry a queen?

  10. BB

    May 5, 2012 at 2:16 am

    Well, I’ve just completed reading Deadlocked. I’m eager for the next book. Like some of you I missed the heat and passion between Sookie and Eric. At the same time, it had to be this way to show the possible break up between the two. I’m going to miss the Fae. I wish there were soOme way she could keep contact with her kin. I have a lot of mixed emotions……

    • vikingrl

      May 7, 2012 at 8:50 pm

      I still think there is a way she could contact them, especially thru Mr. Cataliades. Yes, I will miss the Fae as well, especially Dermont. Loved that he was going to miss his HGTV…(lol)

  11. Georgia

    May 6, 2012 at 6:44 am

    U would just like to know why the cover is different for this book? I am in love with the other covers with all the actors/ actresses on the front I have the whole collection so far including the companion and the short stories I’m really disappointed as I think it ruins ” the look ” against the other ones.. Sorry guys I couldn’t find another page to write this on :((

    • Mel

      May 6, 2012 at 11:11 am

      You mean the TV tie-in covers? So far only the first 5 novels have the True Blood actors on the covers. The book series launched in 2001, 7 years before the show, and the original covers all have artwork by the same woman, artist Lisa Desimini. The covers with the actors on them aren’t the original versions.

  12. Wendy

    May 6, 2012 at 8:44 am

    I knew at the end of Dead Reckoning that we where looking at the end of Sookie and Eric. With him trying to keep the news about the marriage to the queen of Oklahoma from Sookie. Then after they all helped kill Victor the way he was to her and the way he bit her and made it hurt. And now in Deadlocked he was spending less an less time with her and wanting her to use her one powerful token to get him out of a marriage is just childish. Then he gets all upset when she uses it save the life of her friend instead of using it on him is just…. MIND BLOWING!!!

    Don’t get me wrong I loved the Sookie and Eric Story line but lets be real he is acting like a twit!!!

  13. Nancy

    May 14, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Is it true that CH said that we haven’t met the real person Sookie is going to end up with? Anyone? Thanks

    • Mel

      May 14, 2012 at 8:44 pm

      I haven’t heard or read that anywhere.

    • Liz

      May 15, 2012 at 12:51 pm

      Charlaine Harris said that no new characters will be introduced at all. At this point it wouldn’t make any sense to introduce someone entirely new after 12 books.