By Dave Thompson
Limelight Editions, $16.99, 232 pages
Forget Team Edward versus Team Jacob. For fans of Charlaine Harris’ popular Sookie Stackhouse series and the HBO television show True Blood, it’s all about Team Bill or Team Eric. When you are so dedicated to a particular TV show or book series, it’s often hard to find time to view or read anything else. Author Dave Thompson takes time constraints of vampire uber-fans into consideration in his new book If You Like True Blood…. Now fans don’t need to waste time endlessly searching for new vampire material. Recommendations are all in one place. Thompson relies on his wealth of vampire-related knowledge to suggest to True Blood fans hundreds of other vamp-themed television shows, books, movies and songs that they would enjoy. Vampire topics covered include vampires in English literature, movie Draculas, female vampires, the Hammer Films studio and the undead through the ages.
Thompson’s already great writing is at its best when he is discussing the music featured in the True Blood soundtrack. His great passion for and appreciation of the perfect song becomes apparent in two specific chapters: one that analyzes 17 songs with ties to True Blood (including Jace Everett’s 2006 hit “Bad Things”) and another chapter that outlines the development of gothic rock. Even the biggest vampire trivia buff will learn new bits of fascinating information. Thompson mainly uses True Blood as a basis to begin his discussion, not as the center of it. That is good news for people not completely familiar with Harris’ characters and plot but who are still looking for a resource loaded with vampire pop culture references. If you are searching for more of a True Blood analysis, there are better resources.
Once fans finish reading this fascinating exploration of all things vampire, they can check out Thompson’s lists of the 100 greatest vampire movies, 100 greatest vampire novels and series and 150 more songs from the True Blood soundtrack. You’ll have enough extra material to watch, listen to and read to keep you up all night. Just don’t let any vampires in…
Reviewed by Kathryn Franklin