A quick note about these three books:
For me, each one of these books was extremely moving in its own way. And because of that I have not re-read these editions as much as others. Sometimes you need to savor the heart ache. These books are also darker than their predecessors. Harry goes through some extremely difficult emotional situations in Small Favor, Turn Coat and Changes, and as the reader you are sucked into the anguish with him. The comedy and love is still there, but its evident Harry has very troubled times ahead.
In this story Mab, Queen of the Winter Sidhe, shows up to collect on one of the two favors still owed to her. What is this Small Favor? To rescue John Marcone, crime lord extraordinaire and some times ally, from the clutches of a group of fallen angels. The Denarians are back, and they are making a major move for power.
I love Molly and the rest of the Carpenter gang (Sonya too. I tend to toss him in with this lot, him being a Knight and all.) They are an extremely tight knit family and you can truly see the love, and respect they have for each other. I love that Molly is growing up as a person and a sister, and growing into her magic as well. Charity, Molly’s mom is becoming more and more comfortable with her daughters talent and warming up to the idea that she is a responsible young lady, and on the right path.
Since Marcone is missing and held hostage by the Denarians (I hate Nicodemus. Hate. Hate. Hate.) Harry and the Knights must work with Miss Guard and Hendricks. Guard is awesome. At one point she has had her guts ripped out, super-glued back together, bleeding all over the place and about to pass out and she is still toting her battle axe around like a good little Valkyrie. She practices a different form of magic from Harry, although some basic points over lap. Guard, the Knights and Harry work together to free Marcone, and kick Denarian butt.
A haunting and pivotal place, dare I say character, is introduced in the end chapters. The island has a spirit of its own and is keenly aware of its surroundings. This mysterious island in the middle of Lake Michigan is essential to the end game of Turn Coat, as I’m sure it also will be in future installments.
This book opens with Morgan; showing up at Harry’s, bleeding, brooding, and demanding help… and promptly passing out.
Morgan, Morgan, Morgan.
Why did he have to show up at Harry’s door?
I spent half the book waiting to see if his seeking Harry’s help was all a ploy to behead Harry and Molly.
The nefarious Black Council is at work sewing fear and misdirection all throughout the White Council of Wizards. Framing Morgan for treason and murder is a great way to ignite panic in the Council, and turn people on each other. Though we don’t know for certain who the members of the Black Council are, we do know that they are deeply embedded in the supernatural community.
Something that saddened me is Thomas and Harry’s relationship totally changes due to the events in this story. I really, really like Thomas, and it makes me miserable to see him hurt and distant from his brother. He does what needs to be done, but in the process changes into something darker.
For me, the ending was sad, but satisfying and a sense that everything is alright even if it hurts. In a way the good guys won… sort of, and we gain some closure. The events also open numerous doors that I’m sure we will walk through later.
For those of you who have not read it, I will not spoil anything for you…. Tease maybe.
The book title is completely accurate. Changes is about… changes. Everything for Harry is changing. Where he is in his life, his relationships, and emotional security are all turned upside down. For goodness sake, the indestructible Blue Beatle is totally destroyed past the point of resurrection.
I truly feel, in my heart, that “OMG I HATE YOU JIM BUTCHER!” and “WHAT DID HARRY EVER DO TO YOU?” Sums everything up quite nicely. I believe that Jim loves, LOVES, putting Harry in crappy situations to see what he will do, and how he will grow. There was a point when I flung my book across the room and dented my bedroom door.
I appreciated the careful planning the author has taken with the entire series. This is evident all throughout this installment, and I had numerous “Ah-HA!” moments. There are many scenes in other books that you thought were ordinary that end up re-surfacing in this story. The amount of foreshadowing that comes in to play is amazing!
I would highly recommend starting this book when you know you will be able to finish it without interruptions, and have some recuperation time after. The story is very dark, and for me, was extremely draining emotionally. There were times while reading that I had to remind my self to breathe.
And the ending... it’s a killer.
Ghost Story comes out Tuesday. For those of you who are at SDCC this weekend or live in the San Diego area Penguin has copies for sale at Mysterious Galaxy NOW!!!
Ghost Story Chapter 5