Carolyn's Reviews > Backup

Backup by Jim Butcher
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Mar 01, 2015

did not like it
bookshelves: fantasy_paranormal

Having read the first Dresden book - Storm Front - and having seen the TV show for it's brief run, I am familiar with the setting/characters in the "Dresdenverse", as someone so aptly called it.

The best I can say about this little novella is that if you are a fan of the series, you'll enjoy it for the different angle on an event you're already familiar with. If you're collecting the series, it *might* even be worth the exorbitant cover price to own it.

For everyone else - borrow it from the library, or a friend.
Actually, if you're not familiar with the Dresdenverse, don't bother untill you've read some of the main books. The entire thing is written like someone confiding in someone who is already 'in the know', but the 1st person voice is kind of foolish, I thought, since the main character tells us over and over again that he can't tell anyone this information. It left me wondering, then, just why he was telling me? He's not rambling on to himself, he's actively speaking to another, explaining all sorts of things.

Ultimately, this is the jarring detail that ruined the story for me. Of course, there is also the skipping-all-the-details of things happening, which is a big story-killer for me, but ultimately I just couldn't get past trying to figure out just WHO was the narrator talking to, within the severe confines he had set up around the direst need to NOT tell anyone about the "Oblivion War", even the name of it.

Oh, well. Enjoy it if it's your 'thing' and you can overlook the obvious flaws, but to me it's just bad story-telling.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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Susan 's a bit harsh since you admit you haven't read past book 1 and this book is about Thomas, who wasn't even acknowledged as Harry's brother til about book 5... and the TV-Dresden-verse it completely different.

Did you buy it or check it out/rent it/borrow it?


Carolyn Susan wrote: "'s a bit harsh since you admit you haven't read past book 1 and this book is about Thomas, who wasn't even acknowledged as Harry's brother til about book 5... and the TV-Dresden-verse it completely..."

I borrowed it from the library. Cover price is $20.

My harshness isn't because I am or am not familiar with the Dresdenverse - my issues are all in the style of it. Like I said in my review, if the whole Oblivion War is so super-super-secret-can't-even-mention-it's-name, then who exactly is Thomas supposed to be talking to? The book is all first person narrative; and very familiar, friendly narrative, at that. I just can't reconcile the two.

Also, I dislike writing that glosses over the events in a story in big gallops so as to get to the conclusion - I actually *like* the details. The writing style on this is slick, with not many details - 'he stabbed the demon. it fell down dead' kind of action sequences. The actual denouement is done so quickly, I had to go back and read it again to make sure that was it.

Very slick, but ultimately unsatisfying - unless a reader is already such a big fan of the series that they are willing to overlook such pesky details in favor of getting all the background that Thomas is liberally dishing out.


Susan It felt to me like he was talking in his head... ever find yourself narrating your day?


Carolyn Not really.
With that premise though, would he have felt the need to repeatedly describe Harry and his place in the world?

But hey, if you liked it, good and well.



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