Storm Front-Dresden-2/5

By Jim Butcher

A modern day magician, just trying to make the rent.

Storm Front Cover

Most people regard magic as little more than hocus pocus; which is exactly how the magical community likes it, all except for Harry Dresden, the only wizard who advertises in the phonebook, for all the good it’s done him. Then the phone rings; first a missing person, and then a homicide. Ever the opportunist, Harry eagerly accepts both jobs, but soon learns that one may be more than he can handle.

A mini mystery sets the stage, with dabs of humor to add a little characterization before the “big reveal”. Unfortunately the momentum is short lived, as the story swiftly switches into pure exposition, blatantly telling the audience what could easily have been revealed in scene. This becomes a model for the rest of the story, alternating between short scenes that hint at interesting characters, and explanations that serve as both backstory and bridge.

The use of exposition puts a strong emphasis on the narrator, but fails to convey a complex perspective in the character of Harry Dresden, who spends much of the story reiterating familiar ideas, with occasional innovations that are all too fleeting. The story offers a quick read for those who want to relax, but lacks the depth to make it memorable.

*Quick, easy read
*Interesting Characters
*Long descriptions, bordering on excessive
-Simple, predictable plot
-Weak ideas


Next Time…
Mirrors & Thorns Anthology

8 thoughts on “Storm Front-Dresden-2/5

    • Well, these things are very subjective. I read it as part of a book group, and the host cited it as one of his favorites, and there’s a very clear and devoted fanbase, so you never know.

      I’m actually thinking of doing a thorough study of the Codex Alera at some point. I find that I rather consistently don’t like Jim Butcher, and I’m rather curious to try and understand why. Considering his financial success, he’s clearly doing some things right.

      • I have heard so much about this series and I have seen people that both loved and hated it. And you are definitely right, it’s always subjective in the end. Well, I might try one out at some point, to see if it’s something I would enjoy 😀

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    • Mmm. I think what really bothered me was how often it felt like the plot advanced because of luck or chance, rather than the active and intentional choices of its protagonist. I’m a big believer in the importance of choice.

    • Well, to be fair, it was a letdown for me. I know many others who love Butcher and the Dresden series. Taste is very subjective. It is a quick read, so if you fancy giving it a try, it wouldn’t take long. I’m always interested in hearing what others think of a story.

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