I had heard about the Dresden files for years, but just got around to reading the first one. My expectations were surpassed. The background is derivative (far, standard supernatural creatures, Lovecraftian horrors, secret wizard societies); but that accusation can be leveled at other, popular series (looking at you, Larry Correia and Charlie Stross). That's not a knock- I enjoy all of those. Jim Butcher does a nice job of integrating the hard-boiled detective story with the magical background. All the characters were written well, save Morgan, who came out pretty one-dimensional. The plotting is quick and tight, as befits a detective story,
James Marsters did a good job of narration. He is a little too quiet for me, but my main beef is that he plays Harry too dryly. I know it's appropriate for the character, but even when giving an inner monologue about how much he detests the things the villain is doing, the narrator's tone sounds like he couldn't care less.
Still, that's a niggling point that doesn't really detract from the audiobook. I enjoyed this first book and look forward to more of the series.
Good entertaining read/listen. I want to know what happened to the reporter...maybe in another episode? Narrator was skilled at providing appropriate emotion.
It's enjoyable enough to have gotten me to read the next, but simply a good start for a SPECTACULAR series.
This is one of my favorite series. I recommend it to most of my friends, whether they love fantasy or scifi or mystery or thrillers. I am currently rereading this series and maintain my initial assessment: if you want to get someone hooked, or just want to give your book club a good taste, START WITH #2: Fool Moon. The second book just has a couple of relationships to catch up on, and all the best elements of the series. (You can still read #1 later without many spoilers, but if you don't you won't miss any vital info.)
If you want to start from the very beginning, this is a fun book and rest assured this very long series just keeps getting better. This first book in the series is, I believe, the author's first published work. It is very enjoyable but isn't as action-packed and well-rounded and full of constantly evolving complex story line as the rest of the series.
I don't write a ton of reviews because I read too much; I average at least 3 written books per weekend and at least 8 audiobooks per month. When I'm in the car (to ward off road-rage or impatience) or when I'm home and sick or having a bout of insomnia, audiobooks are my drug of choice. I read and listen to just about everything: from romance to fantasy/sci-fi to thrillers to great literature to (usually scientific) nonfiction... So I get around and can be pretty jaded about books within certain genres and about long series. For example, Anita Blake is virtually unrecognizable toward the end of her series and yet each book in the series is very formulaic. I still read it and enjoy it, but it isn't in my mental "top books" list and I only recommend it to select people. That said...
THIS IS ONE OF MY TOP 10 SERIES from any genre. It has everything. It's visceral and real, yet there's a sense of the fantastic... There's a definite plot with lots of twists and magic is explained with just enough of a science-y rationale & approach without it killing the wonder. The characters are all great. The world is fully flushed-out. It's present-day Chicago with most of the world unaware of the supernatural. Dresden always has a smartass comment and gets more & more thoroughly injured throughout each book (no improbable bullet-dodging like many action heroes), but still pushes through. This series is VERY long, but it isn't formulaic, friendships change and evolve, people evolve and are the reader is (and characters are) reminded of the fact that they have changed.
James Marsters is a great narrator. He doesn't really do voices but the women sound female enough without sounding like wilting damsels or shrieking harridans. Sometimes, I'm not sure who's talking, but it quickly becomes clear. However that can be made okay since the series is all in the first person, as told by Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden, Wizard/PI. His pace fits the scene. His voice is soothingly low but not monotonous. Harry's age isn't clear in the beginning but he seems to look to other characters like he's in his early 30s, although Marsters' voice makes him sound mature he has enough of the words' flavor in his tone to keep Harry sounding young enough. He does some more voices later on.
It was a very clean start to the series without a huge cast of long term characters to keep in mind, and in the end everything comes together nicely.
The toad-demon scene is I think the best in the book.
I re-read it over 3 days.
This is my 2nd or 3rd time re-listening to this series. I enjoyed watching Dresden grow and develop in each new book and the narrator is excellent.
Yes. If you like reading any fantasy with magic you will love this series.
There are many memorable moments in this series. But the prevailing humor under stressful situations binds you to the main character's personality.
He does an amazing job of portraying the authors droll humor that makes this series great.
Both. Laughing out loud many times while listening to this series made two of my family members listen to it too.
Again go read/listen to it now!
Loved author's different series so decided to dive into this one. Great read! But the audio quality was little low but that comparing to newer books
Wonderful characters great story very very enjoyable... Can't wait to get into the second book!