Nina Talks Dresden

Dresden #7
424 Pages

I hate zombies. I really REALLY hate zombies. I hate them almost as much as Indiana Jones hates snakes. Okay. I hate them more. When I started to read this book I belted out, in true Indy fashion, “Zombies. Why’d it have to be zombies?!”

This time around Harry is confronting a group of disciples, and their hoards of undead on their quest to find the last journal of a notorious necromancer. As if to make matters worse, Mavra the super creepy Black Court vampire (I can’t believe she’s not dead yet), is also after the book, and threatening Murphy’s life if she doesn’t get it. And as usual Harry works his magic best when he’s between a rock and a hard place.

This is one of my favorites in the series, in addition to it being in my top reads of all time pile. There are several reasons for that, one of the big ones being Butters. We first meet Waldo Butters in Death Masks. From that moment forward I loved the little polka obsessed medical examiner. He provides massive amounts of comic relief, and you can identify with his startled reactions to the supernatural. At one point, Butters starts to freak out and almost gets Harry, Thomas, and himself killed because he’s seizing up under the shock of the coming attack. The only way Harry can force him to muscle through his hysteria is to convince him they are not going to die. Harry does this by persuading Butters that they can’t die because it’s the opening day of Oktober Fest and “Polka. Will. Never. Die.” After a few fortifying chants Butters starts to scream “POLKA WILL NEVER DIE!” at the top of his lungs. And what’s Thomas’ response?  “I can’t believe I’m hearing this?!” After reading this, I almost died. But alas, polka survives.

Another reason I really loved this installment was the non stop action. Half way through the wardens show up, and for the first time you get to see them in action. Morgan and Captain Luccio are amazing. You see Harry use some pretty wicked magic, and pull some awesomely bad ass stunts. One of which is resurrecting Sue, a Tyrannosaurs Rex (a freaking T-Rex), from her resting place in the lobby of the Field Museum. Now that is one zombie that I think is AWESOME.

Dead Beat has several other plot points I would love to talk about, but I can’t because of spoilers. There are plenty of laughs and worry to go around, with the ending leaving you with a calm resolve.

Dresden #8
479 pages

Proven Guilty is a hard one to talk about because almost anything I say will be a spoiler. So, I’ll keep it short and simple.

The White Council charges Harry with the task of finding the source of black magic originating in Chicago. Part of the narrative takes place at a horror convention called SPLATTERCON!!! (Note the three exclamation points.) As you can imagine it’s the perfect place for all kinds of mayhem. The typical horror villains and slashers are hanging out in the open and things get really crazy when Molly Carpenter, the daughter of Harry’s good friend Michael, ends up in the middle of the investigation. Harry is forced to choose between his personal convections and what the White Council needs him to do.

This book has more of a classic mystery plot than the others, and I really like the who-done-it story line. While all the others have some sort of mystery, I think that this one is much more in depth and truly draws you in. Sometimes I forget Harry is a P.I. and not just a wizard. Although he does do some detective work in the other novels this one is a true mystery, and when you think you figured it out, the story zips you in the other direction.

Dresden #9
407 pages

It all starts when Murphy needs Harry’s help with some suspicious deaths. From Harry’s point of view it looks like someone is killing defenseless members of the magical community. In order to put a stop to the killings, he must find out why the White Court families are all going up against each other. And of course our favorite wizard gets caught in the middle of the fray, yet again.

After Proven Guilty, Harry is challenged with finding a good balance of patience and authority with Molly Carpenter, his new apprentice. Since Molly so far has been self taught, Harry finds himself going back, and revisiting the basics of magic with her. Something that is remarkable about teaching the fundamentals of any craft is in order to accurately teach the material you must revisit it yourself. And in doing so Harry rekindles the subtle magical nuances he has forgotten.

I love Molly and her punk rock style. She tries to project an “I could care less” attitude, but under all that makeup and bleached white hair, I know she’s a softie at heart. Just like her dad Michael, she makes a great partner for Harry. She has just the right amount of sass to Harry’s dry humor, and is innocent enough for you to believe she really is a scared 19 year old girl. Because of this you want Molly to thrive and succeed.

In White Knight we see something I never thought would happen… Karrin Murphy and John Marcone working together. Since the events of Proven Guilty Murphy is willing to do what needs to be done in order to protect her loved ones and kick evil’s butt. I really love this side of Murphy and while she’s still a cop, she’s not afraid to stretch her limits.

You've almost made it. The release of Ghost Story is almost here. {July 26th} Here's Chapter 4 as your reward.

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