Review: Ghost Story by Jim Butcher

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 30-07-2011

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Ghost Story: A Novel of the Dresden FilesGhost Sto­ry: A Nov­el of the Dres­den Files by Jim Butch­er
My rat­ing: 5 of 5 stars

Of course I (along with all Jim Butch­er’s oth­er fans) have been absolute­ly dying to read this book ever since fin­ish­ing Changes. Sam Chupp and I have been talk­ing about how there could pos­si­bly be anoth­er book that occurs after Dres­den’s death. Of course, the novel­la includ­ed in Side Jobs: Sto­ries From the Dres­den Files was very good and got along quite well with­out Dres­den, but that prob­a­bly was­n’t going to work for an entire nov­el.

Sam has­n’t even start­ed Ghost Sto­ry yet, so I can’t gloat at home. I was actu­al­ly right in some of my spec­u­la­tion! I’m being non-spe­cif­ic so as to not give too much away, even though I am hid­ing this review behind spoil­er warn­ings on GoodReads in case he does read it and remem­ber what I had said (which is high­ly doubt­ful). But I feel like brag­ging some­where, so you, dear read­ers, have to put up with it.

Jim Butch­er deserves major praise. Ghost Sto­ry is amaz­ing. Dres­den has become such a pow­er­ful wiz­ard that few ene­mies are tru­ly a chal­lenge, and wip­ing out the entire Red Court with one spell was an amaz­ing feat. What do you do for an encore to that? Hav­ing Dres­den imma­te­r­i­al and oper­at­ing with­out mag­ic does seri­ous­ly push him, and that makes for a fas­ci­nat­ing tale. Being able to keep a series fresh in its thir­teenth vol­ume says a lot for Butcher’s tal­ent. I think Ghost Sto­ry is the best Dres­den Files book yet, and I’m look­ing for­ward to book four­teen even more!

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Review: Blood Oath by Christopher Farnsworth

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Book Reviews, Reading | Posted on 07-06-2010

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Blood Oath Blood Oath by Christo­pher Farnsworth

My rat­ing: 4 of 5 stars
Blood Oath is an inter­est­ing and fair­ly refresh­ing vari­a­tion on the vam­pire riff. Most of the cur­rent tales give us a suave, sexy preda­tor who mes­mer­izes his or her prey, leav­ing humans pin­ing for their pres­ence. They might even fall in love with a human. Nathaniel Cade, how­ev­er, refers to humans as food, say­ing, “Would you have sex with a cow?” That makes much more sense to me. It’s a good thing he isn’t inter­est­ed, either, as the typ­i­cal reac­tion peo­ple have to encoun­ter­ing him is utter pan­ic, often involv­ing the loss of blad­der con­trol.

Book Review: Changes by Jim Butcher

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 10-05-2010

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Changes (The Dresden Files, #12) Changes by Jim Butch­er

My rat­ing: 5 of 5 stars
I do not give out many 5‑star rat­ings, but for this book I could­n’t do any­thing else. That is despite the fact that Jim Butch­er did some­thing I hon­est­ly did­n’t think he would do to his legions of loy­al read­ers, some­thing that I absolute­ly detest. Some­thing that I will not tell you about, because I loathe spoil­ers.

Review: Mean Streets

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 07-06-2009

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Mean Streets (Roc) Mean Streets by Jim Butch­er

My review


rat­ing: 4 of 5 stars
Mean Streets is one of the best antholo­gies I’ve read in a while. It only has four dif­fer­ent pieces in it, but they’re all novel­las, and all by strong, expe­ri­enced writ­ers. I don’t think any of them are here rid­ing on some­one else’s name on the book cov­er.

Jim Butcher’s “War­rior,” the first piece, is very good. It fol­lows Har­ry and the Car­pen­ter fam­i­ly after they expe­ri­enced some major changes in the last Dres­den nov­el. I could have stood a lit­tle more Mol­ly, but Har­ry and Michael were the focus char­ac­ters and they worked out some things that real­ly need­ed to be dealt with. I’m glad I read this before the next Dres­den nov­el, because I feel there’s impor­tant char­ac­ter devel­op­ment. I seri­ous­ly rec­om­mend this book to all Dres­den fans.

I haven’t read any of Simon R. Green’s nov­els, though I’ve heard of the Night­side series and thought about pick­ing one up. If “The Dif­fer­ence a Day Makes” is typ­i­cal, though, I may not both­er. He is a good writer, so I’m not sure what it is that both­ered me so much. I know that some­thing framed as one of the nas­ti­est things peo­ple could choose to do in this piece isn’t even in my top 10, but I feel there’s some­thing else that I just can’t quite artic­u­late yet.

I’ve read all three of Kat Richard­son’s Grey­walk­er nov­els and enjoyed them enough that I plan to keep read­ing. “The Third Death of the Lit­tle Clay Dog” is my favorite piece of her work, hands down. There’s more light, some­how, and that’s impor­tant to me.

“Noah’s Orphans” is my first expo­sure to Thomas E. Sniegos­ki, as far as I can recall. It was an inter­est­ing piece. I found myself won­der­ing about Remy Chan­dler’s past, about how the char­ac­ter has devel­oped. If there are nov­els fea­tur­ing that char­ac­ter, I may give them a read. In any case, it brought up some inter­est­ing ques­tions about faith and obe­di­ence. I think it would have been more per­son­al­ly rel­e­vant to me about 20 years ago, though.

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Books Books Books!

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 31-05-2008

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My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon
Yes, the girl and I man­aged a library run (to the GOOD library) on Fri­day. It took more time and ener­gy than expect­ed, of course, but we got a bunch of very good books.

I read My Big Fat Super­nat­ur­al Hon­ey­moon last night, with much gig­gling. The sto­ries were a bit uneven (nor­mal for an anthol­o­gy), but worth­while over­all.

I espe­cial­ly liked “Heo­rot,” the Har­ry Dres­den piece from Jim Butch­er. I love the way he brings in mythol­o­gy from so many dif­fer­ent cul­tures.

Kel­ly Arm­strong’s “Stalked” was fun, too. Her were­wolves are just more wolfish than most, in my opin­ion.

P.N. Elrod’s “Her Moth­er’s Daugh­ter” was­n’t bad at all. I’ve obvi­ous­ly missed some of her Jack Flem­ing nov­els, and I’m look­ing for­ward to catch­ing up.

I want to find some of Mar­jorie M. Liu’s longer works, as “Where the Heart Lives” isn’t the first of her short sto­ries that have impressed me. What’s even bet­ter is that WtHL is a total depar­ture from the ear­li­er sto­ries I remem­ber.

Disappointed!

Posted by Cyn | Posted in Reading | Posted on 06-01-2008

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(I’m hear­ing Gary Old­man in The Fifth Ele­ment when I read the sub­ject there. Yes, I prob­a­bly could have found a sound clip and includ­ed it, but I’m count­ing on your imag­i­na­tions and mem­o­ries here.)

Well, I final­ly got around to read­ing the rest of Fledg­ling, the Liaden Uni­verse nov­el pub­lished by seri­al­ly by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller in 2007 using the sto­ry­teller’s bowl con­cept.1 Sam has record­ed the final chap­ters for pod­cast­ing and is edit­ing the record­ing this week.