Mavra, Queen of the Black Vampires, is after “The Word of Kemmler,” the ultimate how-to on being an all-powerful necromancer. Mavra wants it, and is bMavra, Queen of the Black Vampires, is after “The Word of Kemmler,” the ultimate how-to on being an all-powerful necromancer. Mavra wants it, and is blackmailing Harry into getting it for her. Harry must find this book, while dodging a whole collection of black wizards who are also seeking the tome.
Jim Butcher’s Dead Beat is another one of the “middle” DRESDEN books that I love so much. Just about the time when most series start getting stale, THE DRESDEN FILES gets better.
Dead Beat continues the tradition of one-upping the action from the previous novel. Harry seriously gets to unload on the bad guys, and the battles take place around some of the most iconic Chicago landmarks. While I was at a Jim Butcher book signing, someone asked Jim which of the books he would like to see turned into a motion picture. His answer was Dead Beat. The story is still early enough in the DRESDEN universe to begin a movie with, and the effects and action would be amazing.
I can’t really tell you any more without spoiling the book, and I’ve said about all I can say about how wonderful this series is in my previous reviews. There is never a dull moment, and the books just keep getting better as Butcher’s craft gets tighter and tighter.
Dead Beat is available in unabridged audio from Penguin Audio. James Marsters is the voice of Harry Dresden. James is best known as Spike from the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and he is brilliant in Dead Beat, as he is in all the audio DRESDEN FILES I have listened to. When I hear Harry in my head while reading, I now hear James Marsters. Penguin has used Marsters in every DRESDEN audiobook to date, and if they are wise it will remain that way. —Justin@www.fantasyliterature.com...more
“The building was on fire and it wasn’t my fault,” says Harry in the opening line of Blood Rites. This has to be one of my favorite DRESDEN FILES book“The building was on fire and it wasn’t my fault,” says Harry in the opening line of Blood Rites. This has to be one of my favorite DRESDEN FILES books, and the very first line is quite possibly one of the most memorable in the series. Harry has been asked for a favor by his pseudo-friend and White Court Vampire, Thomas Raith: he is to investigate a possible death curse at an independent adult film studio. As with all DRESDEN stories, not everything is as it appears to be. Harry finds himself in multiple perilous situations, all of which are over his head. Jim Butcher masterfully weaves the reader through the chaotic mess that is Harry’s life, all culminating in a dramatic finale that deserves a standing ovation.
There are so many great moments in Blood Rites, from demon monkeys throwing flaming poo, battle meetings held in an IHOP, to the endless humorous banter between Thomas and Harry. The events that take place in Blood Rites have a lasting impact that still lingers six books later. Several wonderful characters are introduced, and many existing ones are fleshed out. You learn more about the White Court vampires, and Harry’s relationship to them. Mouse the Fu-Dog is introduced, and Kincaid the mercenary body guard becomes one of my favorite characters.
Blood Rites is what I call a keystone book in a series, and long-running series like THE DRESDEN FILES generally have a few of these. The events taking place are essential to the overall story arc that will end many books later. I like to be given the feeling of a “big picture,” and Blood Rites is one of the first DRESDEN FILES books that really move the overall story further along. It was after Blood Rites that I first realized that Jim Butcher had a plan for how he was going to end this series.
I cannot recommend Blood Rites highly enough, and I'm excited that Roc is re-releasing it in hardcover. The middle books of the DRESDEN FILES certainly deserve this sort of attention, as they are some of the best books in the urban fantasy genre. I never read books twice, but though I’ve read Blood Rites before, I found myself unable to put it down when Roc sent me a review copy of their new hardcover edition. It is simply an amazing and fun experience from the very first sentence!
Small Favor is the 10th installment in the Dresden Files series. Harry Dresden is a wizard for hire, and he likes to take on the things that go bump iSmall Favor is the 10th installment in the Dresden Files series. Harry Dresden is a wizard for hire, and he likes to take on the things that go bump in the night. Like the rest of the series Small Favor takes place in modern day Chicago, where the general populace remains blissfully ignorant of the dark magical underbelly Harry deals with on a day to day. In the opening of the book Harry is attacked by Gruffs, lethal enforcers of the Summer Faerie court. As he investigates further into the motivations behind the attacks he finds himself caught in the middle of a struggle that could change the world forever. With enemies including the Mafia, Faeries, Demons, and goats it takes everything Harry has to piece things together and stay alive while doing it.
Small Favor has a hard act to follow with 9 novels preceding it. Many authors start to struggle with keeping a series refreshing and exciting at the point the Dresden Files is now. Jim Butcher is different. Each book brings new elements into the story that keep you wanting more and keep the over all story of Harry Dresden an entertaining one. Small Favor continues in this tradition very well. Small Favor is filled with the usual action, mystery, and magic of a Dresden book, yet adds elements that make it unique in the series.
I truly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone looking for a fantasy novel not quite like any other. Though as a stand alone novel the reader would have a hard time knowing what's going on. Small Favor is very much a continuation of a ongoing storyline that starts to establish itself by the 3rd book in the series. Read the other books first before picking this one up. ...more
I read this book after I ran out of Dresden Files. Jim's little blurb at the end of his books had convinced me to give it a whirl. Let it be known, thI read this book after I ran out of Dresden Files. Jim's little blurb at the end of his books had convinced me to give it a whirl. Let it be known, this is not to the caliber of The Dresden Files. It is a good book none the less. The story follows several characters in the world of Alera, who find themselves intertwined together in a land on the brink of war. This is a book of themes. Bravery, honor, love, family and sacrifice are all themes predominately displayed through out the story. Alera itself is not described in much detail, and the reader is left mostly to context to piece together what the world is like. The main characters are likable, but not easy to identify with. What I liked most about the book is its simple yet engaging storyline. It's essentially good vs evil. I'm sucker for a story where the good guys wins, and heroes get the girls...or guys. Overall I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys classic fantasy story telling. I do however caution Dresden fans, this is no substitute while waiting for the next Dresden Files....more