Storm Front

Storm Front by Jim Butcher

Orbit: paperback published 2011: 336 pages

Meet Harry Dresden, Chicago’s first (and only) Wizard P.I. Turns out the ‘everyday’ world is full of strange and magical things – and most of them don’t play well with humans. That’s where Harry comes in.

Harry is the best at what he does – and not just because he’s the only one who does it. So whenever Chicago P.D. has a case that transcends mortal capabilities, the look to him for answers. But business isn’t just slow, it stinks.

So when the police bring him in to consult on a grisly double murder committed with black magic, Harry’s seeing dollar signs. But where there’s black magic, there’s a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry’s name. And that’s when things start to get… interesting.

You think you’ve read awesome? This beats your awesome hands-down by its awesome awesomeness. I literally have no other words to express my delight in discovering this series (thank you, friends, for harassing me into reading it). If you like any of the following, you will like Storm Front:

1. Humour – this includes sexual innuendos, heroic quips, self-deprecation, a horny spirit-in-a-skull and wacky scenarios.

2. Fantasy – this includes faeries, a big scary Council-type thing and some wicked dark magic.

3. Murder mystery – think a magical whodunnit and you’re close. I’m never great at guessing the murderer, and this wasn’t rocket science, but it still had you gripped.

Another fast-paced read, but this time with a bit more adult pizzaz, for want of a better word. You immediately love Harry Dresden and everything about him – from his weird coat preferences to his mentalist cat Mister and the spirit-in-a-skull called Bob who has an inappropriate interest in the opposite sex, considering he has no body. I laughed, and although I didn’t cry, I didn’t want to put it down. Thank goodness there are lots in the series. AND, I’ve been informed by a very reliable source, I can expect more comical high-jinks that may-or-may-not include a dinosaur.

Tell me you’re not going to read these just for that.

Rating: 8/10

Next book: The Magician’s Guild by Trudi Canavan.

Another well-sourced recommendation, and another first in a series (this time aptly named The Black Magician Trilogy). Canavan is such a big-hitter in fantasy writing (check out her blog for more tidbits) that it seems a little criminal that it’s taken me this long to actually get round to reading it. I actually had to blow dust from it when I picked it up from the bookshelf (all those good intentions all those years ago, and it got overtaken by the post-modern literary big-hitters during my “bohemian/rebellious” phase).

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