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Storm Front Audiobook

Storm Front: The Dresden Files, Book 1

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - What makes Harry Dresden so essential in the world of urban fantasy is his incapability to ignore those in need, or skip a single glitch in the appearance of a case - it makes him a good detective, and it keeps his character steady. Jim Butcher has created a wizard who exudes the callous confidence a private detective needs to survive and placed him in our world - a world where you cast a spell or become a thrall, trade or be traded, investigate or die. Narrator James Marsters embodies Dresden at his core, smooth and solid, with an unmistakable outside edge of gruffness that leaves listeners with a hardboiled swing in their step. —Erin

Publisher's Summary

My name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Conjure by it at your own risk. I'm a wizard. I work out of an office in midtown Chicago. As far as I know, I'm the only openly practicing professional wizard in the country. You can find me in the yellow pages, under Wizards. Believe it or not, I'm the only one there.

With rent past due and a decent meal becoming an issue of some importance, Harry needs work, and soon. A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters.

©2000 Jim Butcher; (P)2002 Buzzy Multimedia

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (24860 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Donna Columbia, MD, United States 07-13-09
    Donna Columbia, MD, United States 07-13-09 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent listen and a great start to the series"

    It must be hard - harder than just publishing your book - to publish a book in this format. Not only does the book win or lose due to it's quality, but it has the added complication of being able to fail due to the narrator being unsuitable to the material.

    This book, and it's narrator, bring Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden to wry, sarcastic life.

    What the book and narrator have, the audio editing could have brought out more. You do hear James Marsters take many a deep breath, and for many of those, it seems to fit into the nature of the character being portrayed. After a while, you understand that better editing would have alleviated the background product of getting long passages of text out.

    I had still made the decision to download the next few books in this series by the time I'd reached the middle of the book. I'd checked first to make sure that the narrator was the same, and he is, before doing so.

    A bad narrator has often caused me to stop downloading what might have otherwise been an excellent choice. A good narrator, like this one,
    has caused me to listen to entire series I might otherwise have gotten in paperback.

    I recommend this to fans of mysteries, magic and modern fantasy.

    72 of 78 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom Hillsboro, OR, USA 05-20-10
    Tom Hillsboro, OR, USA 05-20-10 Member Since 2001
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    "Excellent Story, Distracting Sound Engineering"

    I loved the story and the narrator voice acting, but, like others, found the excess captured physical noises like breathing, swallowing etc very distracting. The chapter or section transitions were also very abrupt...breaking the flow.

    I am glad I purchased it and would highly recommend it to all, but I hope they fix the sound issues for future books.

    122 of 136 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy J Tornado Alley OK 10-19-13
    Nancy J Tornado Alley OK 10-19-13 Member Since 2011

    Mystery reader (especially series) and Austen lover

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent Urban Fantasy/Mystery"

    Okay, so I am being converted from a "won't touch paranormal books " to a moderate urban fantasy/paranormal fan. It all began, I suppose, with Harry Potter when I really enjoyed the inventiveness and wit of the writing. But at that time I still maintained that Harry Potter was an anomaly: it wasn't the genre that attracted me, it was simply those characters and that writer that I liked.

    Then I happened onto the Peter Grant trilogy by Ben Aaronovitch in Audible. I absolutely loved those books -- they were well-written, wildly inventive and very funny. The adventures of a young constable in London who ends up being assigned to the division of the Met which handles anything which is "not normal" kept me entertained and laughing.

    I discovered the "Dresden Files" existence from references contained in reviews of the Peter Grant books, making comparisons between the two. "Storm Front" is the first of the Dresden Files, and now I am forced to admit that I am a fan of the genre. Harry Dresden is an engaging character, the only wizard listed in the Chicago yellow pages. His adventures are entertaining and laced with humor, and the mystery aspect was well handled. Comparing "Storm Front " to the Peter Grant books, I would say that Storm Front is darker, a bit more violent and somewhat less funny than Peter Grant. I also think that the paranormal creatures in Storm Front are not as developed as those in the other series, and more often appear as one-dimensional figures. These factors cause me to prefer the Peter Grant books, but I will be reading the rest of the Dresden Files, too!

    38 of 42 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim TEMECULA, CA, United States 01-19-12
    Tim TEMECULA, CA, United States 01-19-12 Member Since 2006
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    "The Wizard Sam Spade"

    The premise that there is a real Wizard working as a private eye in Chicago is brilliant. The execution of the story and the performance by James Marsters is similarly near perfect. There is a gritty film Noir feel to the story which makes it at once credible and compelling. It has amusing moments and enough adult content for this not to be a great read for the Harry Potter crowd. The action (of which there is a great deal) feels very cinematic; you can imagine Riddley Scott doing a great job with the mayhem and monsters. I came to this series from the Iron Druid Chronicles which I have seen described as “Dresden Light.” That’s a pretty fair assessment, the villains are darker, sexier more violent and less funny in Dresden; it’s a different kind of story. If Iron Druid is ‘Twilight’ Dresden is ‘True Blood’. That’s probably a bit unfair to the ‘Iron Druid’ as ‘Twilight’ is horrible and ‘Druid’ is terrific...but you get my point. If I have any criticism of Dresden (and it’s slight) it’s that the hero almost never has a good time. There seems to be a rule in fantasy writing that along with fabulous magical ability comes a generally horrible life …to quote the Genie in Aladdin “Phenomenal cosmic powers! Itty bitty living space.” Beyond that tiny reservation, this is a terrific story and performance which I can highly recommend.

    55 of 62 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 03-15-10
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    "Memorable"

    I've finished Jim Butcher's first 2 Dresden Files books--this title being the first--and even though I've moved on and I'm now reading other novels, I find myself thinking of The Dresden Files in the middle of the night or at random times. If I feel like reading, my mind automatically assumes (with pleasure) that I'll be reading about Harry Dresden. That's a very high recommendation for any novel.

    For those who don't already know, Storm Front introduces us to Harry Dresden, a practicing wizard living in Chicago. That set up and the resulting complications are what make The Dresden Files fun to read. Harry's an interesting character, with a colorful past involving a mother who was a witch, a father who was a stage magician, and an uncle who taught Harry how to be an evil wizard.

    In Storm Front, people are being murdered from the inside out, literally. For Lieutenant Murphy of the Chicago Police, it's clear something strange is going on, so she calls on Harry, who occasionally works as a special consultant to the police department, helping with crimes that appear to have no worldly explanation. The magical universe Jim Butcher has created is both believable and fascinating. Learning about that world through Harry's eyes is what I believe is the best part of these books.

    I have two major disappointments with these novels: Harry Dresden and Lt. Murphy have a working relationship; yet neither trusts the other. Lt. Murphy especially distrusts Harry Dresden, and the explanation for that distrust seems weak, at best. The false obstacles she places in Harry's path caused by this distrust hurt my enjoyment of the story. At the same time, Harry Dresden has a self-blame complex. Everything is his fault and his responsibility. I found his constant need to blame himself just plain irritating, especially when there was nothing he could have done differently.

    Overall, I highly recommend this novel. The good definitely outweighs the somewhat minor irritations.

    67 of 76 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Bedford, Nova Scotia, Canada 06-24-09
    Jennifer Bedford, Nova Scotia, Canada 06-24-09
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    "Masterful"

    ...or is that Marstersful? I became hooked on Butcher after listening to a short story based on the series in 'My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding', and was drawn in by the wit and style of the author. It takes a really excellent author to convince me to read all of his books after one short story, but that is exactly what happened. Stormfront is a terrific book, full of humor and action, and Marsters reading of it is nothing short of stupendous. I would absolutely reccomend this book, and can't wait to read the rest.

    63 of 72 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Hico, TX, USA 03-21-10
    James Hico, TX, USA 03-21-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good - gets better"

    I accidentally listened to book 10 first, before I realized it was part of a set. I was a little lost, but realized that I really liked the writing and audio acting. I then searched out and found this book. After listening to it I can tell that it was an earlier effort. Not quite as good with story or acting, but still quite a good book and worth listening to if you like things like magic, demons, and dry wit.

    45 of 53 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Snoodely Santa Barbara, CA United States 06-06-10
    Snoodely Santa Barbara, CA United States 06-06-10 Member Since 2016
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    "Good supernatural noir"

    "Storm Front" is the first of Jim Butcher's audiobooks to which I have listened; and I expect to continue listening to this series. I bought "Storm Front," because members reviewing Mike Carey's audiobooks (which I highly recommend) kept comparing them to Jim Butcher's works. They do have a lot of similarities, and, together, seem to form a sub-genre all their own -- supernatural detective fiction. I like the literary concept of supernatural beings -- fairies, demons, ghosts, and the like -- moving among us, invisible to all but a few of us. Naturally, those who can see and converse with these beings have an advantage, and can help to solve crimes instigated by them. So those gifted humans make good detectives. Unlike some of the other reviewers of "Storm Front," I liked James Marsters' narration very much. He has a pleasant, soft voice that goes well with noir; he makes good vocal distinction between the characters; and he uses non-verbal cues (yes, such as sighing) skillfully to convey the characters' emotions. I recommend "Storm Front" to anyone who can appreciate off-beat mystery stories and good acting.

    27 of 32 people found this review helpful
  •  
    beatrice Houston, TX, United States 03-07-12
    beatrice Houston, TX, United States 03-07-12 Member Since 2014
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    "An Old Fashioned Mystery"

    The plot progresses smoothly, the story reads well, and Harry is a fun character who is his own worst enemy. There were several times when the decisions he made were not realistic. But if he made the realistic choice the story would have ended sooner. I will buy the next in the series because I liked the story. I was reminded of old black and white mysteries with characters that Humphrey Bogart would have played. Harry is smart, tough, and has a dry sense of humor.
    The only thing I didn't like was the Narration. It's not James Marsden fault. I blame the production staff. I found it hard to listen to Marsden swallowing and taking deep long breathes. I know the guy has to do both, but, it's distracting and it takes away from the story.
    I passed on buying the books since they came out. I listened to the sample and read a few of the reviews. The mention of the deep breathes and swallowing in the reviews was enough to keep me from buying it. I finally gave in because it was something different and I ran out of titles from my usual authors. I wish I could give it a higher rating, but the swallowing was very distracting.

    24 of 29 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jake 08-09-09
    Jake 08-09-09 Member Since 2016
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    "3/5 for the book 5/5 for series"

    There are a lot of problems with this book, many of which are in the production of the audiobook (the editing is crap - you have to listen to the reader breath constantly and it really interferes with the flow of the story, though on rare occasion it fits whats going on). The story itself is a very light read and not very immersive. The concepts are interesting but the story is lacking.

    However, that said, the second book is great. This book really only serves as a necessary stepping stone to set the stage of the series and introduce you to its characters. The second book will knock your socks off. My only complaint is that the reader/editing doesnt get a whole lot better (the reader is actually quite good, and fits the part, but man the editing is bad and it makes him sound bad).

    I only progressed past this first book because Butcher's Calderon series is so good I couldn't believe this series didn't get better - my faith was entirely justified and I intend to purchase the rest of the series.

    52 of 65 people found this review helpful
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  • Askelly1
    9/25/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "brilliant story read really well. Would recommend"

    brilliant story. really well read. brilliant pace. I looked forward to listening to this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • June WB
    UK
    9/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Heavy breathing spoils this"
    What made the experience of listening to Storm Front the most enjoyable?

    Although I really enjoyed this book, and even Marsters delivery of it, the sound of him breathing irritated me immensely. I know he has to breathe, and I obviously don't begrudge him it...but the deep, noisy breaths he takes are off-putting. And not only that but near to the end there was some background noise that sounded like a cat washing itself?! I thought it was one of my cats until I realised none of them were in the room! Other than these minor annoyances, the book was brilliant and Marster's excellent as Harry. I will definitely listen to more in the series (but hope for less extraneous noise)


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rachel
    Ireland
    8/15/15
    Overall
    Performance
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    "Storm Front - Jim Butcher"

    First switch to a new genre for me but I thoroughly enjoyed it. So much so that I'm downloading no. 2 in the series.

    What can I say. I'm not a fantasy fan usually, but this is a more gentle switch from a strictly crime/thriller genre to a lighter more humorous read. If you like Ben Aaronovitch this would probably suit you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alan
    8/2/15
    Overall
    Performance
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    "perfectly narrated"

    I loved this Novel James Marsters is Harry Dresden. 10/10 can't wait to start book 2

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • louisa
    england
    7/25/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book"

    I'd recommend this book as its one I've listened to on cd several times and have just got it on here to listen to on the go good from late teens onward if your in to the myth and magic type books also if your in to some crime novels too but with a magic twist

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • alex
    7/21/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Unlooked for Hit!!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Storm Front to be better than the print version?

    Have not read the paperback.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    I like that it has taken the classic 1920's private eye genre and mixed it up with what feels like well researched folk lore and a little magic. It has good if reconcilable characters and a story that develops nicely to a climactic conclusion. It is not a pastiche, it take itself seriously even if it does not ask you to do the same. There are moments of drama, comedy, suspense and horror. What's not to like!


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    The opening chapter introducing us to the world weary wizard P.I. complete with the mysterious beautiful woman! All the set pieces are really good, it's hard to pick one.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It's quite a short book, i think i listened to it in 3 or 4 sittings whist working or walking. I would happily have sat all day and listened from beginning to end.


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator has made it to one of my all time favorite narrators. He has made what is a very good book into an excellent one!

    To anyone happy to accept the existence of the supernatural in the books they read i cannot recommend this enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • P. Mack
    7/20/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just brilliant"

    I could listen to james marsters read Harry Dresden for hours he captures the humour and indecision and sarcasm completely. Five stars all round

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • oliver barrow
    7/8/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "absolutely epic"

    couldn't write a review that would do justice too how great this is, you'll have too enjoy it yourself too understand

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pip.B93
    7/5/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enthralling!!!"

    It is a beautifully read book - with an enthralling and captivating storyline, hard to not devour in one sitting!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dion
    6/28/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Awesome"

    Awesome
    James marsters is brilliant
    As normal
    Well worth a listen
    Can't wait to get next book

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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