Michael Britt's Reviews > Furies of Calderon

Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher
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really liked it
Recommended to Michael by: Derpa

Actual rating: 4 Stars

Back in the late '90s, maybe early 2000s (don't feel like looking the exact date up), Jim Butcher made a bet with some stranger on an online forum that he could make any 2 ideas into a good book. That man chose the Lost Roman Legion and Pokémon. This is the result of that bet.

Now that we have a bit of the backstory on why it was created, let's talk about the result. The story follows 4 POVs; Tavi, Fidelias, Amara, and Isana. Furycrafting is basically the name of the magic system. Furycrafters can control the elementals of earth, air, fire, wood, water, and metal. Tavi is pretty much what this story revolves around. And sadly, he has been having trouble coming into his own with furies. In a world where furycrafting can literally mean life and death, and pretty much everyone can do it, this is no bueno. Isana is an immensely powerful watercrafter, and Tavi's aunt. Fidelias and Amara are what is known as Cursors. I'm not even sure what to exactly classify them as. So I'll go with: mailmen, spies and secret agents. While the plot isn't anything special, Butcher does a really good job of making the execution pretty entertaining to read. Since I mainly read for entertainment, this was sufficient enough to keep me hooked. If you're looking for something that'll blow your mind, I'm afraid this first book won't do it. If he follows suit with his Dresden Files series, then I'm not too worried; that series started off kind of blah and ended up being so amazing as the books progressed. So I have quite a bit of faith in him.

The characters were written rather well. Unlike Dresden Files, which is told from a single POV, he switched it up and gave us 4 great POVs. Well, honestly I thought 1 of them were rather boring, but that was due to personal taste. I won't mention which one, as I don't want to possibly cloud anyone's judgement who has yet to read it. I'm not even sure why this person bored me, so I think it was just a personal taste thing. While I really enjoyed most of our main characters, I fell in love with so many of the side characters. This is pretty much how I fell about just about any book I read haha. So suffice it to say that we get great characters all around! There wasn't too much development with the characters, but Tavi probably gets the most development. One thing I loved was that Tavi was such a underpowered character. He has to rely on his whit more than anything else.

The prose reminded me quite a bit of his other series, Dresden Files. It was different enough to feel fresh and new, while still having that Butcher charm to it. I did feel like there was a bit of fluff in there, which was one of the bigger problems I had with the book. Near the end it felt like he hung on to a certain event more than he should have and I ended up getting a tad bored. But, that's once again just a personal preference. Other than that, we had some really great pacing. It was actually full of action pretty much from the beginning and almost never lets up. Which I liked but due to the length of the novel, I felt pretty exhausted by the end.

The only real problem I had with the book I had already mentioned above. I think the thing I loved most was how he was able to pull this book together. I only played the first gen Pokémon games (Red Version and Yellow Version) but I loved how he was able to incorporate something like Pokémon into a Fantasy book. He was able to make a certain scene feel exactly like a battle from the games, but it wasn't something that you would need any kind of experience with the game franchise to get enjoyment from. He was able to keep his magic system, the furies, feeling fresh and original and not like a blatant rip off of the games. He had some great rules for the magic system and stuck to them. The magic did feel a bit too powerful at times, but he also had put restrictions on it so that they couldn't sling it all day long without any kind of repercussions.

I was really scared to pick this book up because of how much I love Dresden Files and I wasn't sure if he would be able to pull something else off unrelated to that series. While this is no masterpiece, this is a solidly entertaining installment into the Fantasy genre.
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Reading Progress

October 23, 2016 – Shelved
October 23, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
July 4, 2017 – Started Reading
July 4, 2017 –
page 20
3.06% "  photo CodexAleracoverLarge_zps5uheengk.jpg

Roman Legion mixed with Pokèmon?? Heck yes!!"
July 4, 2017 –
page 120
18.38% "I wonder if he named them the Garados mountains as a nod to the Pokèmon? Obviously spelt differently, though lol. Man this is such a fun and well written book! I'm not sure if the action is ever gonna stop haha. It's so much different than Dresden Files yet it still feels familiar. So good!"
July 5, 2017 –
page 265
40.58% "This isn't as good as Dresden Files, but very fun and entertaining, so far!"
July 6, 2017 –
page 283
43.34% "  photo pokemonash_zpseyenvmje.gif

Our first battle of furies! I'm way more excited about this than I should be"
July 7, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-15 of 15 (15 new)

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Evgeny The second book is where the story really picks up.


Michael Britt That's really exciting to know!!


Jody Glad you liked it! Looking forward to your review.


Nimrod Daniel Yeah, it's a great series! I'm glad you liked it :)


Petrik Your review seems to get better Mike! Well done, can't wait to start this one myself!


message 6: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Nice review Michael! I completely understand your hesitation about picking up something not Dresdren related! hahaha


Derpa What I particularly liked about Tavi was how he wasn't too angsty about his lack of power. He could have been an asshole, but he really wasn't.


Michael Britt Petrik wrote: "Your review seems to get better Mike! Well done, can't wait to start this one myself!"

Thank you Petrik! Your advice really helped! Plus, some books are easier to review than others 😊


Michael Britt Ginger wrote: "Nice review Michael! I completely understand your hesitation about picking up something not Dresdren related! hahaha"

Thanks Ginger! I think you might like this one since you already enjoy Butcher's writing style


Michael Britt Derpa wrote: "What I particularly liked about Tavi was how he wasn't too angsty about his lack of power. He could have been an asshole, but he really wasn't."

I didn't even realize that! Great point!


message 11: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Michael wrote: "Thanks Ginger! I think you might like this one since you already enjoy Butcher's writing style "

Cool!!


message 12: by Orient (new)

Orient Great review, Michael :) Wow, that's a crazy blend in a book XD


message 13: by Emelia (new) - added it

Emelia WOW ! Great review Michael ! May have to bump this up on my list!


message 14: by Nels (new) - added it

Nels Awesome review. On my list to read! :)))


Jody Great review Michael! The story keeps getting better with each book. :)


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