Narrator: James Marsters
Series: The Dresden Files #15
Published by Roc on May 27th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
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Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only professional wizard, is about to have a very bad day….
Because as Winter Knight to the Queen of Air and Darkness, Harry never knows what the scheming Mab might want him to do. Usually, it’s something awful.
He doesn’t know the half of it….
Mab has just traded Harry’s skills to pay off one of her debts. And now he must help a group of supernatural villains—led by one of Harry’s most dreaded and despised enemies, Nicodemus Archleone—to break into the highest-security vault in town so that they can then access the highest-security vault in the Nevernever.
It’s a smash-and-grab job to recover the literal Holy Grail from the vaults of the greatest treasure hoard in the supernatural world—which belongs to the one and only Hades, Lord of the freaking Underworld and generally unpleasant character. Worse, Dresden suspects that there is another game afoot that no one is talking about. And he’s dead certain that Nicodemus has no intention of allowing any of his crew to survive the experience. Especially Harry.
Dresden’s always been tricky, but he’s going to have to up his backstabbing game to survive this mess—assuming his own allies don’t end up killing him before his enemies get the chance….
My Thoughts on this Book
FIRST IMPRESSION:: Fifteen books in, reading the first chapter felt like reconnecting with an old friend . One you don’t see for prolonged lengths of time that makes you wonder why it’s been so long. Every joke they tell lights up your face and ever horror they’ve face makes you gasp in dismay. You want to hear their story. Where they’ve been, what they’ve done and most importantly, were their going. That’s how I feel about Harry Dresden. Every book is a new adventure from an old and dear friend; I know I am going to love the ride.
THE STORY:: Okay. I will confess, I wasn’t jumping up and down with glee at the end of this book. I’ve even taken a break to really think about why. I will say, I think I miss plain old Wizard-for-Hire Dresden. But when I really think about it, it’s not Harry that I miss. I miss who the world perceived him to be, and how they treated him. Yes, yes, Harry did put himself in a self-imposed prison, but damn. The man pretty much died and came back to a new world where everyone had a bone to pick with him — for almost dying.
Which brings me to my first gripe. It’s with Butters. I used to like the awkward, polka-playing doctor. And yeah, I used to smile every time it was said that “polka would never die”…. but polka can die now. Every time Butters opened his self-righteous little mouth in this book, I wanted to kick his teeth in. Who the hell does he think he is, the way he mistreated Harry. Giving him shit for not being around — the man was dead. DEAD! I wanted to wring his little neck every time he implied that Harry was like some evil monster waiting to burst out of his Harry skin and kill them all. And then… then I have to hear Bob call Butters boss and see them team up together!!!
But the worst part of it all was Butters was still a damn coward. With everything that he “learned” to do in Harry’s absence, he wasn’t any braver than he was before. He just stepped up when there was literally no one else and a little self=preservation was involved. At best, he just learned to flee with style.
I could go on and on about hating Butters, but I won’t, The heist was interesting, but it did grab me. Just like Harry felt … something wasn’t right. It was obvious it was a setup to something bigger. Because one of the many things Butcher always does right is dastardly villains. And no one — not Nicodemus, not Mab, not Marcone, and not even Hades himself was, well, villainy. I got to the end and was like … wait. That’s it? This can’t be it.
I honestly wished Harry could have had more time to incubate and gain his strength and get back to being the hero I love. I know their are only a few more books left and for me, this whole book just signified that this journey is fast approaching its end game; or hell, it’s already there. And I am heartbroken and ambivalent to this part of the journey. I hope I’m wrong… let me be wrong!
I won’t say I hated this book. I won’t say I loved this book. Honestly, I’m really confused. What the hell is Butcher up to?? That’s what I want to know… I know it’s something and it’s going to be epic.
FINAL THOUGHTS:: Is it just me, or does anyone miss the black council? I felt like things were really coming to a head and then poof. They vanish… Then again, what about the Outsiders??? Those story lines went way and left my grasping in their wake. Well, in typical Butcher style, I’m probably going to get sucker-punched with a bit of the ole’ “what the fuck was just happened” when they show up again. I have it on high authority that he loves to torture us readers… he told me so.
RECOMMENDED FOR:: Those who love a complex hero with wit, charm and uncompromising bravery. Those who love to be taken on an epic journey. Who am I kidding, I ‘effing love this series. Everyone read it, dammit!
MY THOUGHTS ON THE NARRATOR:: James Marsters simply is Harry Dresden. Magic, mastery, perfection… each book is an experience I intend to be repeat indefinitely.