Monday, June 21, 2010

My Favorite Book Series Part 1 - The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher



I was thinking (never a good thing, I'm told). Since this is a spanking brand new book blog, you probably have no idea how my tastes run. So, I thought it would be a good idea to make a list of my favorite book series, that way you can get a picture of what I like, and see if we have similar interests or not. The list I'm going to be posting in the next several days are in no way comprehensive and are not listed in any particular order. They are just some of the stories I have enjoyed lately. I won't be reviewing each individual book here, unless I reread them. But, I'll probably be reviewing the next installments in each series, as soon as they are published. I'm waiting for them with bated breath, hopefully you will be too.

If you haven't read any of the series that are going to be enumerated here in the next few days, I strongly suggest you do so as soon as possible.

You ready? Here we go. 


THE DRESDEN FILES BY JIM BUTCHER

Product Description:
(Taken from the author's website: http://www.jim-butcher.com/)

The Dresden Files are set in a "alternate" Chicago where magic is real, but only a few actually believe in it; it's a first-person tale told by an irascible wizard named Harry Dresden, who regularly gives the magical establishment indigestion — and the police, the same. Take Sam Spade, your Average Joe Underdog Action Star, and toss in some spellcraft, and you get Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Heck of a guy.


HARRY DRESDEN — WIZARD
Lost Items Found. Paranormal Investigations.
Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates.
No Love Potions, Endless Purses, Parties or Other Entertainment


Yes, Harry Dresden is a Wizard. The only one in the phone book and practicing it out in the open. He consults with the Police sometimes, but don't let it fool you into thinking that makes people take him seriously, it really doesn't. He's also a private investigator. He's unlucky in love and usually broke, but that doesn't stop him from always trying to do the right thing, solve the most incredible mysteries, and save as many lives as he possibly can in the meantime.  

I  don't have enough words to express how much I love this series. I absolutely adore it. Harry Dresden is probably my favorite hero in the Urban Fantasy genre. Jim Butcher is a genius. I love the plot lines, the characters, the humor, just everything about it. Oh, the humor. It's priceless.  Harry always manages to crack me up, even under the most dire circumstances. It's one of the most quotable series out there. If you are a fan of sarcasm and snark, these are the books for you. Let me just give you a few quick examples: 

"You're such a cynic," Molly said  
"I think cynics are playful and cute."
"Jobs are a part of life. Maybe you've heard of the concept. It's called work? See, what happens is that you suffer through doing annoying and humiliating things until you get paid not enough money. Like those Japanese game shows, only without all the glory."
"Don't yadda yadda the Lord, Harry. It's disrespectful."

"Bank guys get so hung up about things like bad credit histories and people who fill in the "occupation" blank of the application with wizard. I guess it could have been worse. I could have been filling out the reason the loan was needed with pay off mercenary for services rendered."

"Harry?" Bob asked.  "Are your feet wet?  And can you see the pyramids?"
I blinked.  "What?"
"Earth to Dresden," Bob said. "You are standing knee-deep in De Nile."

"Who were those guys?"
"I can't tell you that," I said.
There was an empty second and then Billy's voice turned cautious.  "Why?  Is it some kind of secret need-to-know wizard thing?"
"No.  I just have no freaking clue who it was."

"Oh," I said.  My voice shook a little.
"Are you afraid, boy?" Cassius whispered.
"You're about the fifth scariest person I've met today," I said.
His eyes became very cold.
"Don't knock it," I said.  "That's really better than it sounds."

I'll stop with the quotes, because I don't want to spoil you. However, let me just add that these aren't even the best ones, just the most "non-spoilery" I could find.

I can't stress enough, that what's really incredible to me about The Dresden Files is that a male author has manage to create some of the best female characters in the genre. The main character might be a man, and our narrator, but the secondary female characters are very complex and interesting. There are no clich├ęs, something that unfortunately happens a lot in this genre, but not here. Actually, all the characters no matter how small are very layered. There is such a rich cast of characters that you'll probably fall in love with many of them and not only Harry. I know I did. The character development all through the series is fantastic, and encompasses the whole cast.

There are 12 books in the series so far, and Jim Butcher has said he will write 25 books total. What is so very impressive is that each installment gets better and better. In most series that have run for this long the latter books are usually weaker, but that is so not the case here. Trust me. The latest book, Changes, blew my mind and left me gasping by the end of it. I just can't believe we'll have to wait almost another year for the next one. I'm counting the days.

I could go on and on about it, but you'll just have to find out how amazing these books are for yourselves. Go get them now. Run, don't walk.

My rating: 




The Dresden Files:

 Storm Front (The Dresden Files, Book 1)Fool Moon (The Dresden Files, Book 2)Grave Peril (The Dresden Files, Book 3)Summer Knight: A Novel of the Dresden Files (The Dresden Files, Book 4)Death Masks: A Novel of the Dresden Files (The Dresden Files, Book 5)Blood Rites (The Dresden Files, Book 6)Dead Beat (The Dresden Files, Book 7)Proven Guilty (The Dresden Files, Book 8)White Night (The Dresden Files, Book 9)Small Favor (The Dresden Files, Book 10)Turn Coat (The Dresden Files, Book 11)Changes (Dresden Files, Book 12)

The Dresden Files Short Stories:

"A Restoration of Faith" -- Read it for free!
Takes place before Storm Front

"Vignette" -- Read it for free!
No set time frame

Plus, the short stories contained in these Anthologies:

My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding (Paperback)Many Bloody ReturnsMy Big Fat Supernatural HoneymoonBlood Lite: An Anthology of Humorous Horror Stories Presented by the Horror Writers Association (Paperback)BackupMean StreetsStrange Brew
  
There is another short story to be publish in a new Anthology called Dark and Stormy Nights that will be out on July 20th, 2010.

Dark and Stormy Knights

And the upcoming collection of The Dresden Files short stories to be released in October 26th, 2010.

Side Jobs: Stories From the Dresden Files

Product Description
The first short story collection in the #1 New York Times bestselling series-including a brand-new Harry Dresden novella!

Here, together for the first time, are the shorter works of #1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher-a compendium of cases that Harry and his cadre of allies managed to close in record time. The tales range from the deadly serious to the absurdly hilarious. Also included is a new, never-before-published novella that takes place after the cliff-hanger ending of the new April 2010 hardcover, Changes. This is a must-have collection for every devoted Harry Dresden fan as well as a perfect introduction for readers ready to meet Chicago's only professional wizard. 


The next Dresden Files book, the 13th installment, will be called Ghost Story and it'll be available on March 29th, 2011 (I can't wait!). Here is the cover art, that's been recently unveiled:


4 comments:

  1. Hi! I'm stopping by and will stay awhile.:-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I cannot agree with you more about how much fun the Dresden files are to read. You're right, they're lovingly crafted and executed... each book not only builds on the previous installments but Jim Butcher treats his readers' intellects with respect by not writing down, he trusts that if he gently nudges us, we will remember and/or follow along.

    Like you, I adore this series!

    Write on!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hey Kate! Welcome! I stopped by your blog too. Great work, I'll be checking it out as often as possibel.

    Hi Rachel! Thanks so much for stopping by. I love how you adore The Dresden Files too. Harry Dresden rocks and I'm glad I have someone who understands my love for it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You know, I don't read enough books from a male author or from a male POV. I think it's time to get started.

    Plus, I know it is all fantasy and all, but I kind of love it when the characters have a 'real' feeling to them. And what could be better than this: "He's unlucky in love and usually broke."

    I'm interested in seeing what you mean about the development of strong female characters. Plus the quotes were great!

    As always, I love getting book recs from you so I look forward to future posts on your favorite books series! Thanks D31S!

    ReplyDelete

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