Author: Jim Butcher
Genre: Urban fantasy
Pages: Paperback 372
Published: August 2004
Publisher: Roc Fantasy
Author Links: Website ♠ Twitter
For Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, there have been worse assignments than going undercover on the set of an adult film. Dodging flaming monkey poo, for instance. Or going toe-to-leaf with a walking plant monster. Still, there's something more troubling than usual about his newest case. The film's producer believes he's the target of a sinister entropy curse—but it's the women around him who are dying, in increasingly spectacular ways.Thoughts: This is rather hard to review. Reading this was broken into multiple sessions due to a nasty string of migraines; therefore, it wasn't a straight shot. Please forgive the lack of a coherent review!
"Harry's doubly frustrated because he got involved with this bizarre mystery only as a favor to Thomas, his flirtatious, self-absorbed vampire acquaintance of dubious integrity. Thomas has a personal stake in the case Harry can't quite figure out, until his investigation leads him straight to Thomas's oversexed vampire family. Harry's about to discover that Thomas's family tree has been hiding a shocking secret: a revelation that will change Harry's life forever."
~ Jacket copy
After reading the first few books, I stopped trying to expect what the Dresden books would be about. While there is a definite story line, in some ways they all appear to be a standalone. I feel that the beginning of the books are always rather forced and contrived. Wanting to start a book every book right in the middle of action is a sign of an immature writer. For me, it takes a bit to get into a Dresden book. However, usually once it gets going, they are pretty steady and enjoyable. This one was no different.
Butcher touches on Harry's mother a bit more in this book. She is mentioned off and on from the beginning, but usually only in passing and veiled comments from his "Aunt." However, after learning a startling realization, Harry is actually able to come face-to-face with her and make some pretty interesting discoveries. Further, he learns some things about his old mentor, Ebenezar, that shake him to the core. While it is extremely unexpected, I didn't like the revelation. In a lot of ways, I felt it was out of character of what the audience has been shown up to this point. It seemed like a weak plot device, and I'm not sure why he did it.
In this book, you get to see a little more of Murphy and some of her family. Honestly, I wonder if her family isn't more screwed up than Harry's! It was extremely surprising to see Murphy being willing to come with Harry on his quest to kill Mavra and stop the White Court. Even though she is big about stopping the paranormal badies, it seemed a little out of character for her to turn vigilante. However, I did kind of like seeing that side of her. Plus, it was awesome seeing Harry as her "bitch"!
The banter in this book is up to the same level as the previous books. It kept me laughing, even when it hurt too. Kincaid and Murphy made an interesting pair. And, like Harry, I will never forget her fighting off badies in undies with pink bows!
All in all, I did enjoy this book! I loved the puppy and am curious to see how that turns out. Also, it will be neat to watch the new relationship with Thomas grow. So, even though the beginning was forced, I think Butcher set himself up for another few good books.
Currently: Aliens: Earth Hive by Steve Perry & listening to Contagious by Scott Sigler