Geez, where do I start? I know I'll finish the series, but like other reviewers, I'm disappointed with the unnecessary explanations that ultimately conflict with the timeline. There were also a couple of incongruous actions of the characters- leading one to believe that C.H. is going to arrive at her predetermined resolution, no matter how inelegant or contrived.
I really wish C.H. had done something like Orson Scott Card. During his 8 book series, he recruited a handful of avid fans to comb over drafts of upcoming books for plot holes.
Taken as a stand alone book, I really enjoyed it. But it isn't a stand alone, and we all know these characters, so when they do out of character things or we find out they've been doing things that don't fit the timeline... the magic is lost.
And now, MAJOR SPOILERS:
Like other reviewers have pointed out, we find out that Niall and Eric have been in contact all along... and that just isn't possible. Goes against the timeline. I guess we're meant to understand (among other reasons, I'm sure) that Eric has had motives all along and is no better than Bill. I'm okay with C.H. tearing down some of what we know about Eric if that's the way she wants to go, but at least let it make sense.
Then there is Eric tearing into her neck after the major fight scene. What? Now Eric is manhandling Sookie? Can that be explained away by the bond break? Or maybe the heat of the moment? No, I just don't buy it. Eric has almost always worn kid gloves when it comes to Sookie. Yes, he has put her in danger before, but that's the world he lives in. Yes, they've had rough sex, but that has always been consensual and doesn't count. And yes, he has deceived her, which is wrong, but it has never been to injure her. If Eric isn't "the one," so be it. There are plenty of reasons for the Sookie/Eric relationship to fall apart, but revising his character, turning him into something readers don't recognize isn't necessary.
Then there's the betrothal to the Queen of Oklahoma that he can't undo. I'd be okay with this if it weren't for all the other slams against Eric, inciting us to believe that Eric will never be honest with Sookie and that until now, we haven't seen his true colors. This betrothal reeks of "it can never be," bc Eric will never put Sookie first, just like everyone else (except maybe Sam, of course). Does that mean that everything we've learned about these characters up til now has been wrong?
I will be sorry if C.H.'s ultimate message suggests that one should go with the easy, safe choice even if there isn't that attraction- the lesson being: this (drama, heartache, etc.)is what happens when you DON'T settle. (And btw, I like Sam).