Not quite as satisfying as I was hoping for, but Butcher keeps Harry Dresden's journey interesting and unpredictible.
My main problem is that Butcher i...moreNot quite as satisfying as I was hoping for, but Butcher keeps Harry Dresden's journey interesting and unpredictible.
My main problem is that Butcher is letting the extended cast get a bit unwieldy. I keep expecting him to start using footnotes to remind the reader of which book such-and-such happened in, which character came from where, a la Marvel comics once they hit triple digits in their numbering. (An appropriate simile, given Harry's penchant for making Marvel references this time around.) Absent that, I almost started keeping notes to keep things straight. And I read thick Russian novels for fun.
The other irritation to me was that Butcher's Catholicism -- which has been apparent for at least half the series now -- begins to interfere with the narrative here. Up to now, there has been ambiguity in the relation of the Catholic worldview to Dresden's larger universe (for instance, Sanya, the atheist Knight of the Cross). It feels as if Butcher hit a tipping point in this book, going over from "this is how I see things" to "all of reality works this way, and everybody else is wrong". Which, for this atheist reader, was a sad moment. I've got no problem with anyone believing anything they wish, but when an author lets his own faith shut off other possibilities, the story can get a bit dreary. Perhaps the next book will prove me wrong, and Butcher will drop Harry into a completely different metaphysical realm (without a guidebook, of course). I'm rather hoping so.(less)
In terms of the narrator's voice, this is a five star book. Blair Mallory is a 30-ish southern princess and former cheerleader. Her perspective on jus...moreIn terms of the narrator's voice, this is a five star book. Blair Mallory is a 30-ish southern princess and former cheerleader. Her perspective on just about everything is screamingly funny.
In terms of everything else -- plot, mystery, characterization of anyone besides the narrator, it's maybe a two star book.(less)