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Grave Peril (The Dresden Files, #3)
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Book 3: GRAVE PERIL (Spoilers Allowed)

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Berkley Publishing Group (berkleypub) | 14 comments Mod
Chicago's dearly departed are not resting in peace, and Harry's got to figure out why. Let's talk GRAVE PERIL! Spoilers through SKIN GAME are permissible, so new readers beware.


Julie | 1 comments I’ve always been amused that Michael and Thomas immediately became two of my favorite characters when I first read this book, given that they’d both annoy the hell out of me if I knew them IRL.


message 3: by Lillicat (new)

Lillicat | 8 comments It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) Harry. That sneaky Lea!


Richard Baarspul | 5 comments Although he has a very small role in this book, I think theres more to Mortimer Lindquist than we get to know here. I certainly hope we will see more of him in future books!


Nasim Bahador | 5 comments I just realized that Lea is already talking about Michael's eldest, Molly. So much foreshadowing in this book!


Meryl | 11 comments Julie wrote: "I’ve always been amused that Michael and Thomas immediately became two of my favorite characters when I first read this book, given that they’d both annoy the hell out of me if I knew them IRL."
I had a very similar reaction. I think it's Harry's affection for Michael that makes him tolerable. But Thomas always came across to me as a much more complex character than he looked on the surface - Grave Peril sets him up well.


message 7: by Julie (new)

Julie Gattis (jukiee) | 32 comments When The Nightmare was irritated that Lydia was in the Church, he tossed a car and pulled up the roses AND he called her by name. So did Father Forthill know her real name and didn't mention it to Michael? I would think that would be part of telling what happened, not part of priest confidentiality.


message 8: by Cara (new)

Cara (chibbard) | 1 comments I've always thought this book was the one hardest on poor Harry except for maybe Changes. He loses his girlfriend, starts a major war he knows will kill innocent people and appears to cause the destruction of a Sword of Faith. Yes, i know these events are necessary to set up future plot, but they are still a kick in the crotch.

Worse, Harry doesn't have much of a triumph, no catastrophe averted, no making the world a better place, just the chance to escape with his life. Second most depressing book in the series.


message 9: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Richard wrote: "Although he has a very small role in this book, I think theres more to Mortimer Lindquist than we get to know here. I certainly hope we will see more of him in future books!"

spoilers allowed here, so there...

Ghost story has Mort on the front seat - that guy sure is tougher than he looked. That's some clout - getting rid of that crazy witch from Molly - i bet even in full force, Harry wouldn't have been able to do such a delicate thing to her psyche - if he tried to kick Corpsetaker out of Molly's mind, he would probably have killed both. Mort did it after spending the day being psychically tortured - he definitely has something going on for him.


Nasim Bahador | 5 comments Lea gets the athame in this book. We find out later that is how she gets "infected" So who infected the athame in the first place? Was it the red court?


message 11: by Yasmin (last edited Feb 05, 2020 09:50PM) (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Nasim wrote: "Lea gets the athame in this book. We find out later that is how she gets "infected" So who infected the athame in the first place? Was it the red court?"

same person/group that is causing the troubles behind the scenes throuout the series.
they gave power to victor sells, hexenwolf belts to denton, they contacted Bianca and helped he set up the party and the gifts...
for the next books they are corrupting fairies, vampires and denarians, messing with necromancers and generally causing chaos everywhere.
I really want to see what they're up to - probably to open the outer gates...

it's not the red court because that cabal is still active after Changes.


message 12: by Paulum Mortis (new)

Paulum Mortis | 14 comments Bianca is a great villain in this one. Her dastardly plan is pretty tight. I could really feel all of Harry’s options being trimmed off one by one, building to the high-stakes clusterf—…climax. Dresden points out she was a lot less scary in retrospect, but more than anything this shows how his character has changed over the long running series.

Don’t think I’d have noticed, but recently my mind has been on artwork. Ever seen Altered Carbon? There’s an actress playing a police detective—other than being the absolute first victim when Capiocorpus powers manifest—looks precisely like Bianca St. Claire, or perhaps Arianna. Whatever her surname was…

---

One last thought before book’s end:
Items of faith, the expression of love, probably hope, thresholds, and the light of the sun. All good things to aid in the slaying of vampires, right? So why in the hell does garlic of all things scare Mavra? Or for that matter Draculas of all kinds on non-Dresdeny fiction…
Never thought to ask the question before this read-through


message 13: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Garlic is a good antioxidant...
Well, no - black court vampires are the cliche ones - from the dracula book, that the white council made sure released...
They have all the weeknesses, but if they survive - a dead corpse is pretty tough.


message 14: by Paulum Mortis (new)

Paulum Mortis | 14 comments Yasmin wrote: "Garlic is a good antioxidant..."

Ha! Yeah. Bet anything there’s some kind of gluten vampires out there too. Who can only be destroyed with gluten, or maybe lack of gluten… The Beige Court of Vampires are probably behind society’s whole anti-gluten fixation


message 15: by Nasim (last edited Feb 07, 2020 11:22AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nasim Bahador | 5 comments Yasmin wrote: "same person/group that is causing the troubles behind the scenes throuout the series.
they gave power to victor sells, hexenwolf belts to denton, they contacted Bianca and helped he set up the party and the gifts...
for the next books they are corrupting fairies, vampires and denarians, messing with necromancers and generally causing chaos everywhere.
I really want to see what they're up to - probably to open the outer gates...

it's not the red court because that cabal is still active after Changes"



Yes, I agree with all that. I was just thinking that the red court was also infected by the Adversary and that is why they infected the athme and started a war with the white counsel.


Suzette Banick | 6 comments Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) Harry. That sneaky Lea!"

Is that why? I've always wondered.


message 17: by Yasmin (last edited Feb 09, 2020 04:51AM) (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Paulum Mortis wrote: "Yasmin wrote: "Garlic is a good antioxidant..."

Ha! Yeah. Bet anything there’s some kind of gluten vampires out there too. Who can only be destroyed with gluten, or maybe lack of gluten… The Beige..."


there are lots of different kinds of vampires in the human mythology. not sure if any of them have issues with wheat products, but at least one kind can be distracted by spreading poppy seeds on the floor and the vampire is compelled to pick all of them up.
At least it's easier to do than bury them at a crossroad with a stake through their hearts...


Scott Minkoff | 1 comments Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) Harry. That sneaky Lea!"

Very possible, but I also think Lea truly loves Dresden, as much as a Fae can love a mortal. It's just not recognizable to Dresden through the pain she puts him through to "toughen him up."


Meryl | 11 comments Nasim wrote: "Yasmin wrote: "same person/group that is causing the troubles behind the scenes throuout the series.
they gave power to victor sells, hexenwolf belts to denton, they contacted Bianca and helped he ..."


I've wondered about this myself. I wonder if we'll ever learn the answer?


message 20: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Scott wrote: "Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) Harry. That sne..."

I don't know how much a fae without a soul can love anything. I'm not sure what Lea is feeling can be called Love. Obligation to his mother, to him, to future knowledge of what he becomes - but love?
I like the other explanation better - she got Susan's love and that's why she burns a white court vamp.


Suzette Banick | 6 comments Scott wrote: "Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) Harry. That sne..."

I doubt it. Unless Lea and Harry have had sex and Harry is secretly in love with Lea. It has to be mutual love (that's why Harry/Luccio didn't work. Luccio didn't love Harry) with sex to seal it. I guess it is possible that Lea had sex with someone that she did love and who loved her in return. But I don't see that happening. Unless it was one of her hounds (before she turned him, get your mind out of the gutter).


Chris McGrath (gunnermcgrath) | 1 comments I have always felt books 1 and 2 were much weaker than the rest. There were things I liked about Storm Front and it's a good introduction to the early relationship between Dresden and Murphy, but Fool Moon is the weakest of the bunch. Then you get to book 3 and suddenly the quality of the story and interest in the characters skyrockets. I keep wondering if it makes sense to recommend people just skip the first two, knowing that there will be references to them later.

What do you think? Are books 1 and 2 must-read? Skippable entirely? Maybe have people read book 3 (and 4 and 5...?) and then go back to 1 and 2 as prequels once they're hooked?


message 23: by Steve (new)

Steve H | 3 comments In re-listening to Grave Peril, I latched onto Lydia's prophecy that she told Harry near the beginning of the book. The prophecy fits with the story of the book, but also seems to set up the entire series. It's pretty cool...

"Fire," she whispered. "Wind. I see dark things and a dark war. I see my death coming for me, out of the spirit world. And I see you at the middle of it all. You're the beginning, the end of it. You're the one who can make the path go different ways."

The last one, about Harry being the beginning and end of it and he can make the path go different ways... hell, it even feels like it could refer to Mirror Mirror where Jim has said that the premise is that Mirror Harry made a different choice in Grave Peril...


Gabriel | 3 comments Chris wrote: "I have always felt books 1 and 2 were much weaker than the rest. There were things I liked about Storm Front and it's a good introduction to the early relationship between Dresden and Murphy, but F..."

I started with SF and it was the scorpion scene that got me interested. Read FM soon after and I loved the werewolf lore that was explored (I found it better that SF). All of this led to GP which was that much better because I had read the first two.

So ... I think starting at SF/FM allows folks to get into the pulp nature of a lot of the stories and gives a solid introduction to the world. GP shows just how "serious" the series will get and the repercussions of Dresden's hubris will not be ignored. All of these aspects feel important for someone reading the series.

But to get them hooked in the first place? Why not Brief Cases or Side Jobs? Get them to like the world and then get into the overarching story.


message 25: by Dawn (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dawn (dawntm) | 6 comments Referring to Chris’ comments about whether or not SF and FM may be skipped - it depends on the person. I was hooked on the series within the first few pages of SF. Admittedly, the series really kicks into gear with Grave Peril. With Grave Peril, Jim Butcher’s story line and character development begin to take on depth and immense detail. The characters and the lives they lead become believable, almost real. I love the layers of the storyline. Like the layers of an onion - the more you peel, the more you get in each layer.

One thing that stood out this time reading GP was the seeming prediction of Molly eventually being recruited by the fae. At Bianca’s party, Leah mentions Molly to Michael as being of interest to Leah as a bargaining chip that Michael could trade with. Makes me wonder if Leah knew even then of Molly’s magical ability.


message 26: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Suzette wrote: "Scott wrote: "Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) H..."

it's not the sex - it's the self-sacrifice - like Thomas and Justine could sleep with each other until she let him almost kill her, and afterwards...


message 27: by Paulum Mortis (last edited Feb 12, 2020 04:35AM) (new)

Paulum Mortis | 14 comments Tell them to start with DEAD BEAT.

Depends on your friend of course. If they’re the type to stick with it, say the series goes from Good to Amazing and to start with SF. DEAD BEAT however has several advantages; Waldo Butters’ role in story leaves him unable to help in any meaningful way, but still ask all the pertinent questions. You sacrifice the Thomas spoilers from earlier books and there’s not much Murphy, but there’s lots of Monster of the Week action, Mab’s in it, and so are White Council. As events progress Dresden gets kicked to snot physically and is on questionable ground morally.

Also, something memorable happens at the end…

---

I think the way JimB wrote the series, DEAD BEAT was meant to be the first one? Something to do with it being the first published in hardback?


Brian Layman (brianlayman) | 2 comments Steve wrote: "In re-listening to Grave Peril, I latched onto Lydia's prophecy that she told Harry near the beginning of the book. The prophecy fits with the story of the book, but also seems to set up the entire..."

Even since the first book, Harry has been declared the lynch pin for something big. Something he is born too. The latest mini-story about Morgan, from the news letter, makes it all the more clear. It's also neat seeing how far back the cabal in place against him was mentioned.


Tricia | 2 comments Steve wrote: "In re-listening to Grave Peril, I latched onto Lydia's prophecy that she told Harry near the beginning of the book. The prophecy fits with the story of the book, but also seems to set up the entire..."

I'm reading as fast as I can with Life getting in the way, and just passed this paragraph and went "WOW". Glad you highlighted it. Yes, it does kind of predict everything and Mirror Mirror, right there!


message 30: by Frank (new)

Frank | 3 comments Paulum Mortis wrote: "...Items of faith, the expression of love, probably hope, thresholds, and the light of the sun. All good things to aid in the slaying of vampires, right? So why in the hell does garlic of all things scare Mavra? Or for that matter Draculas of all kinds on non-Dresdeny fiction…
Never thought to ask the question before this read-through"


I've thought about the whole garlic thing (maybe a bit much), and here's my answer, with apologies for the long read.

First off, consider this question: Are White Court vamps really "undead"? What about the Red Court? The Black Court-- well, that's obvious.

Second, vampires have traditionally involved three central themes 1.) immortality with a price, 2.) equating sex with death, and 3.) the perils of going down 'forbidden paths'.

So looking at the Dresden universe and putting it all together, my interpretation is that all the Courts are on a _continuum_ of undead and corruption.

The Whites are spiritually undead. Their bodies are intact, and their souls are 'half'-demon. Their creation is genetic (living), but their true birth is by a choice made at adolescence (the 'forbidden path' of that first fatal feeding). This results in the 'death' of their ability to grow beyond adolescent habits and mindsets-- they can never really love or see sex as anything other than a biological need like feeding. They feed on emotions, which are a spiritual part of humans. As a result, it makes sense that the life forces of those who have evolved beyond this are their bane and undoing; a threat to the Faustian bargain they have made.

The Reds are both spiritually and physically undead. Their bodies are 'half-intact' (living but corrupted), and their souls are fully demonic. They feed on physical aspects of life-- blood itself. They are created by a physical act combined with an action/choice that can come at any time thereafter (also a fatal first-feeding). They too live "forever" in an unevolved state, and feeding and sex to them are one and the same, and they even have a continuum of sentience based on this corruption. One of their banes requires both spiritual and physical representations of ideas contrary to their bargain for immortality-- items of faith held by those who believe. As for the other bane-- sunshine-- one can argue it's the 'natural' version of the spiritual light emitted by holy items held by believers.

The Black Court are _completely_ undead (corpse), and a deeper corruption. Their bodies are unintact, and they don't really have souls or anything like life. There's no sex here, or any semblance of it-- they are truly dead, and vulnerable to much the same as the Reds. But unlike the Reds (and Whites), they are the opposite of life itself by being and moving even though they are dead. Their feeding restores them, but staving off their decay is a losing proposition (compared to Reds). So where does garlic come in? Well, it can be argued that garlic (a plant) represents life reclaiming decay, turning it into new pure flesh that burns even the living (ever eat it raw?). Garlic can be picked, woven into wreaths, dried out, and yet somehow the dead dried bits will miraculously come to full life if re-planted-- not as decay, but new life bundled in its own dead flesh. For the Black Court vamps, this life in its natural form is the ultimate bane. This is also the reason I've always suspected that garlic became the bane of vampires in folklore.

All of this has left me wondering-- what if the real reason is that garlic is more undead (and evil) than even Black Court vampires? And does this explain why garlic-breath is the bane of love on Valentine's day? Food for thought...


message 31: by Julie (new)

Julie Gattis (jukiee) | 32 comments Bianca's doomed assistant Paula is called Rachel by Harry in this book, but Paula by Bianca. Paula answered to Rachel in ghost form. I justify it since guys often have trouble with women's names. And Paula was just so happy she had anyone's notice.


message 32: by Julie (new)

Julie Gattis (jukiee) | 32 comments My favorite line in the book: "....but Micheal didn't want to hand over his truck to vampires. I didn't blame him. (this line:) I wouldn't trust a bloodsucking, night stalking, fiend of the shadows valet, either."

Cracks me up everytime!


message 33: by Ed (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ed Fleetwood | 5 comments Don't forget that "B is for Bigfoot" comes after Fool Moon and before this. (If you're going to do a read-along, do it right!)


message 34: by Julie (new)

Julie Gattis (jukiee) | 32 comments Frank wrote a really interesting explanation of their views on the state of undeadness of the different vampire courts and their banes.

Where on this spectrum do you think the Jade court fall? Or how about Paulum Mortis' Beige Vampires with their Gluten fixation, hahaha



message 35: by Julie (new)

Julie Gattis (jukiee) | 32 comments Suzette wrote: "Scott wrote: "Lillicat wrote: "It was only on this read through that I realized that Lea’s kiss at the party burned Thomas because she’d just kissed Susan and taken her memories of (and love for) H..."

Suzette wrote it must be mutual love for the White Court vampire to be hurt, not just sex. But why is Thomas able to feed on Justine after she or he has sex with another woman?


message 36: by Frank (last edited Feb 13, 2020 09:10PM) (new)

Frank | 3 comments Julie wrote: "Where on this spectrum do you think the Jade court fall? Or ..."

Well, regarding the Jade Court, I have two responses. First, we haven't really been told anything (at all) about them, so I'd be speculating in the dark. Second, I'm hesitant to comment on things that the author hasn't fleshed out yet, 'cause it would feel like crossing a boundary of sorts. I mean, I consider the other three courts fairly well fleshed out at this point.

Also, the Jade Court are famously secretive, so I'd hate to put myself on their radar... :p


message 37: by Frank (new)

Frank | 3 comments Julie wrote: "...But why is Thomas able to feed on Justine after she or he has sex with another woman?"

It's revealed in the series that when a person has sex with someone they truly love, they're protected from the Whites, but if thereafter they are physically involved with someone they're not actually in (mutual?) love with, they lose any "love protection" they previously had.

Thomas' "allergy" to Justine was due to the fact that she was willing (and chose) to sacrifice her life for his-- an act of selfless love matched by his risking his life to keep from killing her. But Justine bringing in someone else of her own free will that neither of them are in love with negates the protection gained from that act (by the rules as outlined).

On the surface, Justine's offer/idea looks like a paradox, because, after all, isn't that ALSO an act of love? Well, yes and no. It's a strange symmetry, but it emphasizes that just as true love comes from a place of consent and choice, so does the protection it conveys. Or, to put it another way, you can choose to put down the crucifix.


message 38: by Paulum Mortis (new)

Paulum Mortis | 14 comments Frank wrote: "...plant represents life reclaiming decay, turning it into new pure flesh that burns even the living"

The further the vamp’s breed is from human, the more magical sway the mortal world has on it… that holds up quite well. Blacula ignore a hand getting blown off by a shotgun, conversely more susceptible to sunlight/garlic/faith… yeah. Whereas Whites are immune to practically everything, but also the least physically dangerous.

I was being silly with the whole gluten thing, obviously? But erm, there are other types. JimB has said there are vamps who feed on bone, I think? Or maybe the calcium in human bone, I’ve seen monsters like that in other fiction.

I’m also fairly certain he’s confirmed Jade Court vampires feed on memories.

And that makes a kind of sense too. We watch Elaine Mallory use “wonderful thought” distraction on a unicorn in SK, and Molls Carpenter weaponizes a memory against Lord Froggy in Bommbshells. Don’t see why some nefarious fiend couldn’t slurp out the memory of your first kiss while backpacking across the Yangtze river valley


message 39: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments Julie wrote: "Bianca's doomed assistant Paula is called Rachel by Harry in this book, but Paula by Bianca. Paula answered to Rachel in ghost form. I justify it since guys often have trouble with women's names. A..."

Names have meaning in the Dresdenverse - people wouldn't give their real name just to anybody - so nicknames and false names would be the way to go. Anyway - if I was going to be a high-end prostitute, I'd avoid using my real name too.


message 40: by Yasmin (new)

Yasmin Mazur | 27 comments So I'm a bit behind on my reading (well - audiobook listening this time around) - still reading this book - and I was reminded again that we never did find out what Ferrovax the dragon got from Bianca, and we never saw him again, which is a real shame.

Anyone else wants to hear how Michael got Amoracus in the 1st place? preferably either as a story about how he met Marva or the other dragon that he did slay.


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