Alex's Reviews > Cold Days

Cold Days by Jim Butcher
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Dec 01, 12

Read in November, 2012

** spoiler alert ** Updated 12/1/2012
This is not really a proper review, but expanding on why I gave it 3 stars. It has spoilers, so don't bother reading if you haven't read the book.

Honestly, I enjoyed the book because I am a huge fan of The Dresden Files, but that doesn't mean I am going to be biased and just rate everything 5 stars.

I don't know if it's due to the different type of series I have been reading lately or not, but seeing Harry as the underdog yet again didn't sit well with me.

I felt like he had to rely on his friends too often to save his butt in this book. There's nothing wrong with that, but Harry was already a very powerful wizard. By adding even more power with the winter mantle, I thought he was going to be a force to be reckon with.
What happened was he ended up getting his butt kicked multiple times by individuals who should have been no match for him.

The Little Folk? Ace the Changeling? Redcap? Being as strong as he should have been, I didn't expect these people to be obstacles in his way.
Hell, the way he froze those fae at the beginning of the book only to shatter them into a million pieces was awesome. I had high hopes at that part.

Another personal disappointment for me was the way he was reunited with everyone.
The only reunion I really liked was with his brother, because it felt the most genuine to me. Thomas couldn't/wouldn't believe that his brother could still be alive. When he finally came to believe it was really him, it made me smile.

We find out Molly already knew Harry was alive weeks ago, so their reunion felt really lackluster to me.
Again the same thing happens with Murphy. Another lackluster reunion. This was the one I was really interested in too. She was grieving hard in Ghost Story and couldn't believe that the ghost was actually Harry. It wasn't until the end that she finally really accepted it was him, only to realize his ghost is now gone.

In Cold Days, Harry is getting his butt kicked and Murphy pops out of no where to help him. After he's safe, they are chatting like him being alive is no big deal. "Oh I followed the explosions I heard about on the police scanner, I figured they had to be you."(paraphrasing). Really?
I was really expecting much more than this. There was no shock on her part at all that he was alive.

There were probably a few other parts of the book that bugged me, which is why I didn't give it 5 stars, but those ones stuck out for me.

I really did enjoy it overall, but maybe I was just expecting the things above to happen exactly as I imagined they would.

Learning about why the Gatekeeper is called the Gatekeeper was interesting. I completely forgot that there must be a reason for his name.
There was more Toot in this book which I loved. His adoration for Lacuna(after realizing Hook was a female) was adorable. I believe he even gets her a jolly rancher, only to be sucker punched in the face. "Wow!"

We learnt more about Mac in this book, even if it wasn't much. We know he's not just some bartender now. I guess he will play a much larger role in a future book.

Everything to do with Demonreach I loved reading about. The spirit of the island, the Well that Harry is now Warden of, the monsters that are imprisoned there. I thought Jim Butcher did a great job with the imagery.

Anyways there's probably more I could say, but I'm going to go read.




-----------------------

Wow, I am really looking forward to this book. The wait is dreadful. The last book 'Ghost Story' was one of my favs of the entire series.
I can't wait to see Harry in his new role as the WK. I especially can't wait for when Molly, Murphy and the rest of his friends realize he is alive.
I teared up a lot during the last book (not afraid to admit it,a lot of it was sad), so I am really, really looking forward to Harry reuniting with everyone (even if his new role will probably make him feel like he has to stay away).

In every book so far (that I can remember), it starts months and months after the last one has finished. Granted, Ghost Story did sort of start off immediately where Changes left off, but that was only from Harry's point of view, in reality 6 months had past.
I REALLY hope Cold Days starts off IMMEDIATELY where Ghost Story ended. With Harry now the new Winter Knight, and Mab taking him to Faerie to introduce him as such to the Unseelie Court. I think that would make for a really good read.

I will be disappointed if the book starts off 6 months later and all Harry's friends already know he's alive and working with the Sidhe. I want to "be there" for when they actually find out that he's not dead, not read about how they found out months ago.

Crossing my fingers Jim Butcher doesn't disappoint!
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Comments (showing 1-50 of 53) (53 new)


message 1: by Llsbear3 (new)

Llsbear3 He will work for MAB, but the jobs she gives to him he
gets to handle how he see fit.


message 2: by Llsbear3 (new)

Llsbear3 CHANGES is the book that made me sad. To find his only
child then have to give her up for her own good after
he had to kill her mother, that a lot for one man to
take.


message 3: by Riley (new) - added it

Riley Llsbear3 wrote: "He will work for MAB, but the jobs she gives to him he gets to handle how he see fit."

Yeah, because THAT really worked out when he just owed her favors. Frozen eyeballs anyone?

It comes back to what Uriel told him - Mab cannot change who he is, only Harry can decide to do that.


message 4: by Smalvina (new)

Smalvina Riley wrote:Mab cannot change who he is, only Harry "can decide to do that"
I'm not sure it's true . people change when circumstances changes.


message 5: by Alex (last edited Jun 02, 2012 11:29AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex Smalvina wrote: "Riley wrote:Mab cannot change who he is, only Harry "can decide to do that"
I'm not sure it's true . people change when circumstances changes."


I agree. It should be really interesting. I really hope he doesn't stay excatly the same. For some reason it wouldn't feel realistic to me. All throughout the books we've learnt that a part of Harry craves power, and if he just gave into it, he would be a force to be reckoned with(like he already isn't?).
Now that he is the Winter Knight, he's going to have more than just his go-to fire spells at his disposal. Since the Winter Knight gains power from the court they are with. He's already a very, very strong wizard. Now he's going to have more power at his disposal. Can't wait!


Shdnx Smalvina wrote: "Riley wrote:Mab cannot change who he is, only Harry "can decide to do that"
I'm not sure it's true . people change when circumstances changes."


What Uriel meant is that Mab can't drag Harry around like a puppet on a string. He still has free will.
He serves Mab now, and that will change him, but Mab can't take away who he is without his own consent. Mab tried to lie to him by implying that she can shape him any way she wants, but once Harry realized that this is not so, he can fight her.

You're right though: circumstances do shape people, so essentially life is about compromising between who you are and who your circumstances demand you to be.

Basically all that changed for Harry is his circumstances. Mab ultimately failed to convince him otherwise - if he had believed that he is completely hers now, he would be by far more vulnerable to her.

(I realize that my thought process is somewhat chaotic, but I hope I managed to convey what I mean.)


Shdnx Oh and I really hope as well that Cold Days will start right where Ghost Story left off: I'd hate to miss Harry's reunion with his friends.

I'm not exactly certain that Jim Butcher would agree though. Harry sort-of got his reunion with his friends in Ghost Story. Starting Cold Days with it could feel like repetition, and would take away precious pages from the actual story, unless, of course, if it is vital to the story.

In any case, I'm sure Jim Butcher will once again come up with an amazing novel. He's yet to disappoint.


message 8: by Llsbear3 (new)

Llsbear3 I don't think that Ghost Story was as good as all of his
other books about H.D.


message 9: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Well the first line of the book will be "Mab has unique ideas of physical therapy." so it can't be too long after Ghost Story.


message 10: by Alex (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex Andrew wrote: "Well the first line of the book will be "Mab has unique ideas of physical therapy." so it can't be too long after Ghost Story."

Thanks for the info! I agree that sounds like a good sign that it's not too far into the future if Harry is still recovering.


message 11: by Smalvina (new)

Smalvina Shdnx wrote: I realize that my thought process is somewhat chaotic, but I hope I managed to convey what I mean.


I see your point. I hope you right,
or at least it's true in books.
not so sure it's working in real life.
I know that if Harry change to the worst it will be painful to read.



message 12: by Jeff (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jeff Would it be too much to ask for you to hold off on a rating and review until you've actually read the book?


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

i'm stoked for the book as well. So excited, I have no words for it. I loved all the books and even though I was depressed through most of Changes and Ghost Story, I cannot wait to read more.


Dustin There is a time skip, but we basically just miss Harry recuperating for a few months, no missed reunion!


message 15: by Smalvina (new)

Smalvina Dustin wrote: "There is a time skip, but we basically just miss Harry recuperating for a few months, no missed reunion!"

How do you know that?


Llalania Anyone else see Harry being groomed by Him to be the next real Merlin? I got that vibe books ago and now that he's 'died' and come back I'm even more certain.


Dustin I stalk the forums, and I've talked to people who've read the sample chapters in the paperback copy of Ghost Story.


Chase Riley wrote: "Llsbear3 wrote: "He will work for MAB, but the jobs she gives to him he gets to handle how he see fit."
Yeah, because THAT really worked out when he just owed her favors. Frozen eyeballs anyone?
..."

This time is different. She doesn't just need a pawn, she needs his unique point of view, his character, and his way of solving problems.


Chase Llalania wrote: "Anyone else see Harry being groomed by Him to be the next real Merlin? I got that vibe books ago and now that he's 'died' and come back I'm even more certain."
Anyone else see Thomas being groomed by Whoever to be the next wielder of Amorrachius? Think: he's the descendant of a king, he's essentially the only one of his kind to love, and he's good with swords.


Heath Meistrich I can def. See that, and harry being groomed as the next merlin. Can any one see Murphy finally picking up fideliucus for good for the coming war with the black council? Lets not forget how harry first saw her with his sight as an avenging angel when he was saving mickey Malone in Grave Peril. And how it responded to her the few times she has used it. Even despite the fact she dint like when she was kinda used at chichen itza


Llalania Chase wrote:Anyone else see Thomas being groomed by Whoever to be the next wielder of Amorrachius?"

Now that is an interesting thought, but there would need to be some serious character work done on him after the Shagnasty incident.


message 22: by Llsbear3 (new)

Llsbear3 I think Daniel being the next Amorrachius wielder as a
better choice. Who better to help train him than his
father Michael?


Llalania Llsbear3 wrote: "I think Daniel being the next Amorrachius wielder as a
better choice. Who better to help train him than his
father Michael?"


I would agree. I'm wondering if Harry and Murphy have any chance now at a romance. I keep getting vibes from Sonja for Murph.


message 24: by Llsbear3 (new)

Llsbear3 Murphy is involve with Kincaid, but we can hope.


Llalania Llsbear3 wrote: "Murphy is involve with Kincaid, but we can hope."

Not anymore really. They had a sort of fun fling thing going but it fizzled out, let me see here...by the time they went to Demon Reach the first time...Small Favor I think. I think it mentions the dissolution of their fling before that too, but I can't remember where...


message 26: by [deleted user] (new)

yeah, in Small Favor it basically tells us that Murph had romantic feelings for Kincaid which was the reason their "relationship" stopped.


message 27: by Alex (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex 2 days left. Can't wait to get my copy on Tuesday. Going to probably have it done by Wednesday, lol.


Gunner McGrath So this is how one gets their review to the top of the page.. post about how excited you are months before so everybody likes it and then when it turns out you think it's just ok it doesn't matter because you got 42 likes already...


message 29: by [deleted user] (new)

Geez. It's depressing that this is the first review people see when they check out Cold Days. For shame.


message 30: by Alex (last edited Dec 01, 2012 03:38PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex You know this book just came out, right?
My "review" was more for just us excited individuals to chat about the upcoming book.
Once it's read by more people, I am sure much more proper reviews will come out and this will fade into oblivion. It's really not a big deal.


Shdnx Yeah, you should probably write a proper review about why you think it's just worth only 3 stars. I personally liked it very much, and I'm curious to see why didn't it meet your expectations.


Gunner McGrath Better yet, delete this non-review and then write a new one so it can be "liked" by its own merits. 42 likes is going to keep this at the top for a long time and its pointless now.


message 33: by Alex (last edited Dec 01, 2012 04:28PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex This is not really a proper review, but expanding on why I gave it 3 stars. It has spoilers, so don't bother reading if you haven't read the book.

Honestly, I enjoyed the book because I am a huge fan of The Dresden Files, but that doesn't mean I am going to be biased and just rate everything 5 stars.

I don't know if it's due to the different type of series I have been reading lately or not, but seeing Harry as the underdog yet again didn't sit well with me.

I felt like he had to rely on his friends too often to save his butt in this book. There's nothing wrong with that, but Harry was already a very powerful wizard. By adding even more power with the winter mantle, I thought he was going to be a force to be reckon with.
What happened was he ended up getting his butt kicked multiple times by individuals who should have been no match for him.

The Little Folk? Ace the Changeling? Redcap? Being as strong as he should have been, I didn't expect these people to be obstacles in his way.
Hell, the way he froze those fae at the beginning of the book only to shatter them into a million pieces was awesome. I had high hopes at that part.

Another personal disappointment for me was the way he was reunited with everyone.
The only reunion I really liked was with his brother, because it felt the most genuine to me. Thomas couldn't/wouldn't believe that his brother could still be alive. When he finally came to believe it was really him, it made me smile.

We find out Molly already knew Harry was alive weeks ago, so their reunion felt really lackluster to me.
Again the same thing happens with Murphy. Another lackluster reunion. This was the one I was really interested in too. She was grieving hard in Ghost Story and couldn't believe that the ghost was actually Harry. It wasn't until the end that she finally really accepted it was him, only to realize his ghost is now gone.

In Cold Days, Harry is getting his butt kicked and Murphy pops out of no where to help him. After he's safe, they are chatting like him being alive is no big deal. "Oh I followed the explosions I heard about on the police scanner, I figured they had to be you."(paraphrasing). Really?
I was really expecting much more than this. There was no shock on her part at all that he was alive.

There were probably a few other parts of the book that bugged me, which is why I didn't give it 5 stars, but those ones stuck out for me.

I really did enjoy it overall, but maybe I was just expecting the things above to happen exactly as I imagined they would.

Learning about why the Gatekeeper is called the Gatekeeper was interesting. I completely forgot that there must be a reason for his name.
There was more Toot in this book which I loved. His adoration for Lacuna(after realizing Hook was a female) was adorable. I believe he even gets her a jolly rancher, only to be sucker punched in the face. "Wow!"

We learnt more about Mac in this book, even if it wasn't much. We know he's not just some bartender now. I guess he will play a much larger role in a future book.

Everything to do with Demonreach I loved reading about. The spirit of the island, the Well that Harry is now Warden of, the monsters that are imprisoned there. I thought Jim Butcher did a great job with the imagery.

Anyways there's probably more I could say, but I'm going to go read.


message 34: by [deleted user] (new)

Not trying to be a douche, A. The last thing I want to do is step on a fellow Dresden fan's toes. You didn't go and like your own review 42 times so you can hardly be held at fault. I just hate seeing these advance discussions overwhelm proper reviews. I appreciate you doing a quick review in your comment section to assuage us grumps, lol. Hate you didn't love Cold Days, but hopefully the next one will be better suited to your tastes.


message 35: by MrsJoseph (new)

MrsJoseph Oh crap, Grant! I followed you here and got spoiled!


Crap! Crap! Crap! Crap! Crap! Crap!


I'm sure this is a great review (stopped reading at the spoilers) but there are horrible spoilers in it. Please, for the love of Harry! Mark your spoilers!


message 36: by [deleted user] (new)

Aw, dang. Hate that, MrsJ :(


Gunner McGrath To be fair, he did say so in the first paragraph:

"It has spoilers, so don't bother reading if you haven't read the book."


message 38: by MrsJoseph (new)

MrsJoseph Gunner wrote: "To be fair, he did say so in the first paragraph:

"It has spoilers, so don't bother reading if you haven't read the book.""



This is a changed review from what I have read. I think it has been edited.


message 39: by [deleted user] (new)

I hate to say it, hun, but it was there when I first read his review. It may have been edited, but that wasn't part of it :/

On a positive note, I'll send some stout homebrew your way in an attempt to wipe away the memory


message 40: by MrsJoseph (last edited Dec 01, 2012 05:18PM) (new)

MrsJoseph ☠The Dread Pirate Grant☠ wrote: "I hate to say it, hun, but it was there when I first read his review. It may have been edited, but that wasn't part of it :/

On a positive note, I'll send some stout homebrew your way in an atte..."


Maybe I was just traumatized, then. IDK. You know how fast I read...I just saw... *shudder* and was in shock.


ETA: yes. You should do that. And send my book so I can do a full fledged Snoopy Happy Dance.


:-D


message 41: by Alex (last edited Dec 01, 2012 05:21PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alex ☠The Dread Pirate Grant☠ wrote: "Not trying to be a douche, A. The last thing I want to do is step on a fellow Dresden fan's toes. You didn't go and like your own review 42 times so you can hardly be held at fault. I just hate ..."

Yeah, I am sure the next one will be great. Everyone has different tastes. I read a lot of people didn't really enjoy Ghost Story as much as the books before it, and that one was one of my favourites.

I am a huge fan of this series and have read every book at least twice(some more).
I will undoubtedly read Cold Days again in the future (definitely before the next book), and who knows my rating might change. If I was honest, I would probably give it a 4/5 because I did love many aspects of the book, I was just hung up on the few parts that I felt disappointing.


Regina For the love of Harry - love that expression.


message 43: by Shdnx (last edited Dec 02, 2012 10:23AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Shdnx A. wrote: "This is not really a proper review, but expanding on why I gave it 3 stars. It has spoilers, so don't bother reading if you haven't read the book.

Honestly, I enjoyed the book because I am a huge ..."


(view spoiler)

So although I understand you, and even agree with you on the things you didn't like, I believe you're just disappointed that the book wasn't perfect as you were expecting it to be, throughout all that time waiting for it. I'm certain that once you re-read it at a later date, you'll find that it is worth more than 3 stars. :)

Thank you for your quick review!

Time for some self-advertisement: my review. I just feel that after reading my analysis above, it would be wrong not to allow you to read my whole opinion on the book.


Jackie Agreed completely with the spoiler review. (fwiw, to hide spoilers, use leftbracket+spoiler+rightbracket at the beginning, then leftbracket+forwardslash+spoiler+rightbracket at the end)

[spoiler]The situation with Molly just pissed me off. There wasn't really a point to it, and Harry didn't really save the day. By having more of Mac and none of Michael or the swords, it makes me think Jim's going to switch and try to make Harry the lovable anti-hero, which sucks.

That's not what we love Harry for. He's the chivalrous good guy who gets the better of the bad guys with power, trickery, beating them at their own game, and the trust/love of his friends. We saw none of that in this book, and almost all the character interactions seemed fake and flat, like they would if a ghostwriter picked up the series and gave the characters their stereotypical responses without understanding who the characters were.[/spoiler]


Shdnx Jackie wrote: "Agreed completely with the spoiler review. (fwiw, to hide spoilers, use leftbracket+spoiler+rightbracket at the beginning, then leftbracket+forwardslash+spoiler+rightbracket at the end)..."

Jackie: try < spoiler > and < / spoiler > (without the spaces). :)

It sounds like you don't really like the darker theme that Jim Butcher has been going for since about Turn Coat. Based on what you wrote, it looks to me that you're looking for a "fairy tale" kind of story, where there is a definite (easily distinguishable) good and evil, and the good guys always eventually prevail.

The Dresden Files was never like that, and that is exactly why I personally love it. It explores more complicated, and deeper things, like the morality line that has been going on since like Dead Beat: it shows that in a lot of cases it's impossible to distinguish "good" and "evil".


message 46: by [deleted user] (new)

(view spoiler)


Chase Llsbear3 wrote: "I think Daniel being the next Amorrachius wielder as a
better choice. Who better to help train him than his
father Michael?"


Yeah, except Dan's kind of an asshole, no?

Think about it. A major theme is Thomas trying to overcome the prohibition on White Court members falling in LOVE, he's descended from a king, he's good with swords...


message 48: by [deleted user] (new)

what prohibition? it's not prohibited for White Court Vampires to fall in love. Unless I missed something.


message 49: by Sky (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sky maybe referring to the burning when WCV touches someone who they loved/are loved by, sort of like true love burns with Justine if they touch bare skin. Not prohibition exactly but maybe that's what is meant?


message 50: by Sky (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sky J4n3 wrote: "[spoilers removed]"

me too and her reasons given later about their long term prospects bear out this view - rational, thinking (e.g. aging issues)


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