Because several people have asked where I came by my spoiled knowledge, I decided to put it over here. I’m going to literally cut and paste what I grabbed off of Reddit, so keep in mind this is NOT my shit. And remember, you can’t unsee it.
So consider yourself warned.
(The other DEA thread was marked “no spoilers” — this is the opposite. Spoil away! As per this subreddit’s spoiler policy, the title is marked, so you don’t need tags in your posts. If you’ve got information, spill!)
• Eric becomes a sex slave. Dress it up all you like, this is what it boils down to. He is unable to find a way out of marriage to Freyda and is doomed to spend not 100, but 200 years as her consort. The breakup with Sookie is outrageous and ridiculously OOC. He has his child (whom we’ve never heard from prior to this) summon Sookie to Fangtasia for a humiliating public divorce.
This is particularly cruel since Eric spent at least his first hundred years as sex slave to Ocella (and likely more.)
“You may call me Appius Livius,” he said, “since you are Eric’s wife. It took Eric a hundred years to earn the right to call me Appius, rather than Master. Then centuries to be able to call me Ocella.”
So only Eric got to call him Ocella. Fine with me. I noticed Alexei was still at the “Master” stage. Alexei was sitting as still as if he’d taken a huge tranquilizer, his synthetic blood sitting on the coffee table in front of him with only a sip missing.
Ocella has three name stages. He’s had Alexei since the Russian Revolution, and he’s only at Master stage. Sookie as Eric’s wife got skipped ahead to Appius Livius. Eric is at stage three, Ocella. If it takes as long to earn the right to call him Ocella as it does to get out of the Master stage, that means Eric was Ocella’s sex slave for at least three hundred years.
And now he’s enslaved himself to Oklahoma for an additional 200. And let’s be clear, this is a slave relationship. He is not a King, he is a consort. Freyda holds all the power. Eric must ask her permission before he can do anything (which comes into play below.) While it’s unlikely that he’s being raped as sadistically as he was with Ocella, he is still being coerced into sex under contract.
Coming from CH, a rape victim herself, this is beyond cruel.
• It’s Sam. Many of us have been predicting that for a while now, based on the use of the cluviel dor, (which I believe CH created solely to prop up Sam as an HEA) and the painfully obvious gesture of having Sam bring Sookie to his brother’s wedding, and introduce her as his girlfriend. CH even goes so far as to have one of Sam’s nephews call her “Aunt Sookie.”
Small-Town Wedding 10A.2:
While Sam and I ate in the living room, sitting side by side on the couch, Mason brought me a glass of sweet tea, carrying it very carefully. “Here, Aunt Sookie,” he said proudly, and though I opened my mouth to correct the title, I just said, “Thank you, darlin’.” Mason grinned, looked instantly bashful, and dashed away.
Sam put his arm around me and kissed me on the cheek.
I took a sip of the tea because I didn’t know what else to do. I thought Sam was getting a
little too into his role-playing.
There’s also this part back in From Dead To Worse, when Sookie introduces Sam to Niall, the closest thing she can offer to meeting the folks:
I became aware of Sam standing by my side.
“Who is that?” he breathed.
“That’s my, ah, my great-granddad,” I said. He was right there in front of me. I had to explain.
“Oh,” he said, his voice was full of amazement.
“I just found out,” I said apologetically.
Niall stopped soaking up the moonlight and his eyes opened. “My great-granddaughter,” he said, as if my presence in the Merlotte’s parking lot was a pleasant surprise. “Who is your friend?”
“Niall, this is Sam Merlotte, who owns this bar,” I said.
Sam extended his hand cautiously, and after a good look at it, Niall touched it with his own. I could feel Sam give a slight jerk, as if my great-grandfather had had a buzzer in his hand.
“Thank you for not thinking I’m defective,” I said.
“Other humans think you’re defective?” Niall sounded genuinely outraged.
“They can’t be comfortable sometimes,” Sam said unexpectedly. “Knowing she can read their minds.”
“But you, shapeshifter?”
“I think she’s great,” Sam said. And I could tell he was absolutely sincere.
And again in 11.4:
“You’d be out of a job,” and closed his mouth, as if that had sparked a chain of thoughts.
Everyone was mighty interested in what I’d be doing if Merlotte’s closed. “Sam would be out of his living,” I pointed out, as I half-turned to go to the kitchen to get another cup of coffee.
“Which is way more important than my job. I can find another place to work.”
“He could run a bar somewhere else,” Claude said, shrugging.
“He’d have to leave Bon Temps,” I said sharply.
“That wouldn’t suit you, would it?” Claude looked thoughtful in a way that made me distinctly uneasy.
“He’s my best friend,” I said. “You know that.” Maybe that was the first time I had said that aloud, but I guess I’d known it for quite a while.
And again in 12.9:
“It’s because we were talking about involving Sam,” Bill told Eric. “That’s the stumbling block.”
Suddenly they were on the same side, and that side was not mine.
“You’re sweet on him?” Eric said. He couldn’t have been more surprised if I’d said I had a crush on Terry’s Catahoula.
“He’s my boss,” I said. “We’ve been friends for years. Of course I’m fond of him.”
Subtle, CH is not.
Many readers didn’t believe CH would actually do it, as despite these passages, Sam has been a largely ancillary character for the majority of the series, and any demonstrable indication of a romantic connection (i.e., a passionate kiss) has been long gone from their relationship since Dead as a Doornail (Book 5). That’s the last time Sam kisses her with any passion, as opposed to the pecks and friendly hugs in the later books. On Sookie’s part, she has occasionally commented on his body, but hardly exclusively. She sizes up just about every man she meets: Bill, Eric, Quinn, Alcide, take your pick.
• CH created the character of Karin the Slaughterer as a prize in a contest. (She’s named after Karin Slaughter, an author apparently.) This is Eric’s Other Child, who was first mentioned in passing back in 7. But this is not some grand plan. Karin, as was once speculated, is not a reference to Eric’s Viking background. No, she’s just the contest winner, and this was just a promotional gimmick. Karin is nothing more than a plot device, she kills the token baddie (Copley Carmichael) and Eric tells her to watch Sookie for a year after they divorce.
• The other terms of the divorce are that Sookie is banned from Fangtasia, and banned from the state of Oklahoma, on penalty of death. No vampires are allowed to feed on her, and Eric is not allowed to be alone with her. Pam is also banned from seeing Eric for the duration of the marriage (as is Karin, but seriously, who gives a shit about Karin.)
• Despite this, after the divorce, Eric approaches her afterwards and asks her to be his mistress. He also says that he should have turned her against her will, spitting in the face of everything that we’ve learned about his character and this specific passage from 9.10:
“But that’s not going to happen to me. And you won’t ever turn me.” I was absolutely serious.
“No. I won’t ever force you into subservience. And I will never turn you, since you don’t want it.”
“Even if I’m going to die, don’t turn me. I would hate that more than anything.”
“I agree to that. No matter how much I may want to keep you.”
And even earlier than that, in 9.6:
“It’s a compulsion. It’s impossible to resist, even when you want to… even when you’re desperate to get away.” His white face was closed and brooding.
I couldn’t imagine Eric doing something he didn’t want to do, being in a subservient position. Of course, he had a boss now; he wasn’t autonomous. But he didn’t have to bow and scrape, and he made most of his own decisions.
“I can’t imagine it,” I said.
“I wouldn’t want you to.”
• Even Pam is dragged through the mud. She breaks off all contact with Sookie and tells her that Eric only negotiated with Freyda for Sookie’s protection to demonstrate his power and loyalty to that which used to be his.
• Sookie is arrested in a tedious B-plot involving Arlene, Copley Carmichael (Amelia’s father) and the devil, of all things. Sam goes to Eric for $30k in bail money. Eric has to ask Freyda for permission first, and then only gives Sam the money with the stipulation that Sam can never pursue Sookie romantically. Bill later gleefully tells Sookie this, as “retribution” for Eric revealing Bill seducing Sookie to bring her to Sophie-Anne in 6.
• Sam and Sookie have sex, but Sookie won’t let him spend the night, wanting to take things slowly. She says that she thinks they’ll be together by Christmas, possibly forever.
• Claude is pointlessly dragged into the story again. Despite what Niall’s been saying for three books now (since the end of 9) about avoiding contact with humans for the humans’ sake, he opens up the portal again to allow Claude to escape so he can flush out the remaining “bad fae” in the world. Awesome continuity once again, CH.
• And just for kicks, CH contradicts herself again by saying that Cataliades can now remove telepathy from Sookie and any eventual children with Sam.
“Can I use it to take away the telepathy?”
“No, my dear, it would be like wishing away your spleen or your kidneys. But an interesting thought.”
So I couldn’t help Hunter with it. Or myself, either. Damn.
The fact that shifter children are usually miscarried has also apparently slipped CH’s mind.
“So how come America’s not full of werewolves and shapeshifters?” I asked, after I’d considered his statement.
“Like must marry like to produce another, which is not always doable. And each union only produces one child with the trait. Infant mortality is high.”
On the leak:
• CH and her apologists have demonized the German source for the leak, insinuating that the book was illegally obtained and maliciously spoiled. In reality, the book was legally purchased at a German bookstore that mistakenly sold it before the scheduled release date. That person then shared their reactions with a few friends, and it spread from there. The parties at fault are CH’s publishing company, agents, and booksellers, for botching the release.
I know there are a few items that I’ve forgotten, so if I’ve left something out or you have additional info, please do share.
ETA: Someone linked this graph up on the boards. It charts how often each male character has been mentioned, in any context, in all the books through 11.
Someone asked a question about the coda CH has been promoting, scheduled to come out this fall. Her answer:
3818 Maker 2013-04-28 09:15 Coastiegurl, AFTER DEAD is just a listing of characters who appeared in the books with a little taste of what happens to them after the books are over. DEAD EVER AFTER is the final word on the course of Sookie’s life. Charlaine Harris
Wonder how that one will sell…
HERE IS THE FULL “SPOILER” PM THAT WAS SENT. I DID NOT WRITE IT, JUST REPOSTED. “ENJOY”
HEA The HEA is Sam but it is not really romantic. They do discuss their prospective future together and to me this whole conversation was odd. She wants to be sure Sam is not a rebound. There is one Sam/Sookie sex scene very late into the book but it is pretty short and feels somewhat detached and reminded me of Bill’s earlier scenes with Sookie. Even though Sookie calls it “best making love ever” and states she is happy there are no real emotions coming across.
Eric/Sookie According to Bill, Eric was mighty mad (or to quote Bill, Eric was “in a towering rage”) when he returned to Fangtasia the night Sookie used the Cluviel Dor (CD). Eric wouldn’t tell his vamps what happened, so the area 5 vamps contacted a were to find out the details and are now convinced that Sookie loves Sam more than Eric.
We meet Karin “The Slaughterer”, Eric’s other child. She seems pretty weird but there are hardly any further details about her.
Eric and Sookie don’t talk really about the CD incident and what it means in regards of their love/future. Sookie tries to talk to Eric at Fangtasia but is being sent as FDC’s vamps were around.
Sookie and Eric publicly divorce in Fangtasia in front of FDC and Freyda. Sookie is summoned to Fangtasia by Karin for the divorce.
Eric visits Sookie the night before the divorce ceremony but she was asleep and as very typical for her, she is not really interested in what he had to say. He told her that whatever happens in public she should not doubt that he loves her and cares for her. Sookie does not ask what will happen publicly and seems to be surprised and humiliated by the turn of events although I thought it was pretty clear where this was heading.
Eric goes to see Sookie at her house after the divorce but it turns ugly. Sookie greets him with “What the fuck are you doing here?” and from there it turns into a shouting match in which Eric is basically a total bastard. He wants to keep her (as his little secret from Freyda) and on top of this he expresses his regrets for not having turned Sookie against her will. Sookie rightfully rescinds Eric’s invitation.
It is not really explained why Eric marries Freyda in the end. It is mentioned several times how beautiful, powerful and rich the queen is but to me it sounds that Eric will be quite out of control of his own life. He is now a consort (not king) and Eric seems to be inseparable from Freyda (if by choice or not is unclear).
Apparently the marriage contract was dealt out with Freyda, Eric and FDC. Eric made a wish list and some details on the agreement are revealed to Sookie by Bill and Pam: – Sookie is never to be harmed, harassed, tasted, killed or made servant by any vampire. – Karina will guard Sookie’s house from her woods, every night for a year. – In return for Sookie’s protection, the marriage will last 200 instead of the customary 100 years. – Eric is not allowed to ever be alone with Sookie again. – Pam will be the new area 5 sheriff (FDC agreed surprisingly) – Both of Erics children are not allowed to follow him to Oklahoma – Sookie is banned from Fangtasia – Sookie is forbidden to ever enter Oklahoma (death penalty)
Now before you swoon over Eric’s protective measures towards Sookie, this is what Pam has to say: “Sookie, take my advice. I’m going to give it to you for free. This was not ‘nice’ of Eric. This was Eric protecting what used to be his, to show Freyda that he is loyal and protects his own. This is not a sentimental gesture.”
Sookie is arrested for Arlene’s murder and Eric bails Sookie (his then ex-wife) out of jail but only because Sam goes to Eric/Freyda for financial help ($ 30k). Eric agrees but only if Sookie will never learn that Sam was the moving force behind bailing her out and to add to this ugly tidbit, Sam had to swear to stay away from Sookie, i.e. to never try to court her in the future.
Of course, it is Bill who has the “intense pleasure” (his own words) to tell Sookie about Eric’s deviousness towards Sam. Bill starts this conversation with “Do you remember what Eric did to me in New Orleans?” and enjoys himself greatly… why Bill would know about this is not explained.
It really bugged me that E/S never in this whole book had a “normal” conversation or at least a heartfelt moment. There is no goodbye, no making peace, nothing. Sookie does not seem heartbroken at all and Eric even sends Mustapha in the daytime to pick up his stuff from Sookie’s house and just like that Eric is gone.
Bill Bill is alive and kicking until the end. He remains in Bon Temps and is probably roaming the night with Karin in Sookie’s woods. There are some “neighbourly” visits throughout the book and Bill is Sookie’s main source on the vamp gossip and soundboard.
Sookie discusses with Bill of all people why Niall has told Eric about the Cluviel Dor at all. To Bill’s credit (hate to say this), he believes that Eric never intended Sookie to use it on the Freyda situation but that Eric was hoping she would at least be “willing” to use it on his behalf.
Sookie believes this was a test of their love in Niall’s eyes. To either see if Eric pressured her to use it or if she would love him enough to use it to keep him. Sookie thinks they both have failed, although I cannot remember Eric pressuring her on this…
Other stuff Prologue is intriguing but the devil means Sookie no harm and he himself is of no further importance for the main plot. Just the fact of being soulless. At least we learn that vamps do have souls.
There are multiple POVs. Most of it is still Sookie’s 1st person narration but there are also 3rd person views whenever Sookie is not around in some scenes. This basically threw me off but then again Sookie’s POV lacks the emotions, fun and depth. She continues to compartmentalize to the end so we really don’t learn how she feels about the important matters or her future.
Chapter 1 sets off the next day after Sookie used the CD.
Mr. C, Diantha, Barry, Amelia & Bob move into Sookie’s house to help her in the murder investigation. Quinn appears to help as well but has to leave to stage Eric and Freyda’s marriage ceremony in Oklahoma. Alcide has a short scene which seems to be there just for the heck of it.
Mr. C. informs Sookie that he arranged for a monthly annuity for the rest of her life on Niall’s orders by selling the fae’s human assets. So Sookie at least will never ever have to worry on this front again.
For whatever reason that escapes me, Barry is not to learn that Mr. C. is his family although I wonder why he did not pick it up from Sookie’s thoughts.
Claude is back and has vengeance on his mind although his reasoning is as well as his “evil plan” is pretty poor/lame. Apparently Niall arranged for him to escape after extensive torture (his face is unrecognizable) to flush out the rest of the fae traitors.
The big bads next to Claude are Amelia’s dad & his bodyguard as well as Steve Newlin and Johan Glassport (QSA’s former lawyer and sadist). Again I felt it was lacking real reasons why they all went after Sookie and so amateurish.
Sookie is shot once (declines Eric’s healing blood) but other than that hardly harmed.
There are no vampire deaths and no other major player is killed off.
Jason marries Michele and fortunately also proves to be a very supportive brother to Sookie.
I think the most lovely and positive aspect to me was that Terry was given a sweet HEA.
Sookie’s final words: “I enjoyed my arms around him (Sam), the sense of him next to me. And if you were to ask me, I would confess that I thought Sam and I would be together, maybe by Christmas, maybe for always. I couldn’t imagine a future without him. But I also knew that if he turned away from me at this moment, somehow I would survive that and I would find a way to flourish like the yard that still bloomed and grew around my family home. I’m Sookie Stackhouse. I belong here.”
ewww. It’s like Charlaine Harris spat at all her fans with a big “FUCK YOU” sign against everyone who liked Eric. WTF kinda ending is this? It’s always been Eric for many many books, and now it’s not. I’m not sure if I’ll be reading this book.
I am disgusted by the way the series wraps up. It makes me feel like the whole series had no direction – each book seemed to be moving toward Sookie growing as a person (lots of personal reflection, learning about herself, etc) and finding happiness and her place in the world. Frankly, to have her end up with Sam when nothing really pointed towards it is ridiculous.
I would rather have had Sookie die (meeting up with her grandmother in the afterlife) and then seen from the other characters how the loss of her would profoundly change them and their lives than see her just end up with a token non-vampire boyfriend.
We all know (because she said it many times) that she couldn’t be with a human or a twoey because of the lack of privacy in reading their thoughts. All of a sudden that doesn’t matter anymore? I call BS.
Absolutely right. She says way back in Book 1 that it’s harder to read Sam than most people, but he has to actively work to block her out of his thoughts. It is not like a vampire’s natural silence (and even that is not perfect, as she read Eric’s mind a couple times, as well as Area Four Sheriff Gervaise and Jennifer Cater mook Henrik Feith in Rhodes.)
Minds are most open when the person is unguarded, e.g., during sex, and that was the stumbling block that prevented her from forming any romantic relationships before Bill. But like so much of her canon, CH has chose to ignore what won’t fit her preordained HEA.