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Storm Front by Jim Butcher
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Storm Front (edition 2000)

by Jim Butcher

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9,468406307 (3.81)2 / 573
Member:mattpuma
Title:Storm Front
Authors:Jim Butcher
Info:Roc (2000), Edition: First Edition, Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:2012 completed, Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:None

Work details

Storm Front by Jim Butcher

  1. 141
    Fool Moon by Jim Butcher (Siesser)
  2. 110
    Something from the Nightside by Simon R. Green (amberwitch, plutoempress, lookitisheef, DovSherman)
    amberwitch: A tough P.I. with a number of convenient talents making a living and trying to uncover the secrets of his own origin in the magical Nightside of London.
    plutoempress: similar style, though i (and this is my opinion) find john taylor funnier than harry dresden.
    lookitisheef: Jim Butcher and Simon R. Green both have created great supernatural male-lead detective series. I think they provide a nice balance to the girls-kick-butt series out there...don't get me wrong, I love the work of Kim Harrison and Laurell K. Hamilton (to name a couple), but it's nice to see that authors can create plausible male leads in the supernatural fiction world, too.… (more)
  3. 110
    Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch (majkia)
    majkia: both involve paranormal mystery and smart-ass dialog.
  4. 80
    Hounded by Kevin Hearne (clif_hiker, al.vick)
  5. 70
    Night Watch by Sergei Lukyanenko (FFortuna)
  6. 92
    Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison (cjacklen)
    cjacklen: A crime-fighting witch quits her job to become a PI. Faster pace and more addictive than than "Storm Front".
  7. 94
    Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (Polenth)
  8. 61
    The Man With The Golden Torc by Simon R. Green (dmacmillan, Scottneumann)
    dmacmillan: Similar in tone to Butcher's Dresden Files but bigger in scope and with perhaps an even wilder storyline.
  9. 30
    Nightlife by Rob Thurman (gluestick)
    gluestick: Brothers Cal & Niko Leandros battle monsters while on the run from Auphe.Doesn't help that Cal is half Auphe.
  10. 30
    Libriomancer by Jim C. Hines (kqueue)
    kqueue: I found many similarities between Isaac Vainio and Harry Dresden. Both are cynical, powerful, heroes with a dark sense of humor, who are on the fringes of their official organization but are called in to save the day. Both books feature many mythical creatures, and have a good versus evil theme in a fast-paced adventure.… (more)
  11. 30
    Thicker Than Water by Mike Carey (BeckyJG)
  12. 21
    The Devil You Know by Mike Carey (amberwitch, TheLibraryhag)
    amberwitch: Same noir feel, more interesting first person narrator. Lovely London descriptions.
  13. 20
    Dead Eye: Pennies for the Ferryman by Jim Bernheimer (enrique_molinero, gluestick)
    gluestick: Lone wolf hero.After coming back from Iraq and getting a donor eye he starts seeing ghosts. Next best thing while waiting for the newest Dresden files book.
  14. 20
    Unshapely Things by Mark Del Franco (MyriadBooks)
  15. 31
    Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews (Strict31)
    Strict31: Lotta "urban fantasy" books out there. So many that simply stick to a formula. I was jonesin' hard for some Dresden when I stumbled across the Kate Daniels series. Like Dresden, it's a rare gem among a drawer filled with common stones. Kate doesn't spend her time on her back or pining for super-handsome creatures of the night. And she's not just an action surrogate for a male hero. There is action and there is romance. But it all fits. The series was not created to serve the needs of a genre, but rather, the needs of the character. It's a different type of storyline than Dresden, because the world has been irrevocably changed by the existence of magic. But a lot of the things I go to Dresden to get are also found here.… (more)
  16. 20
    Sweet Silver Blues by Glen Cook (MyriadBooks)
  17. 10
    Among Thieves by Douglas Hulick (ow1goddess)
  18. 10
    The Man Who Walked in Darkness by Chris Strange (Kaczencja)
  19. 10
    The Man Who Crossed Worlds by Chris Strange (terriko)
  20. 10
    Of Saints and Shadows by Christopher Golden (Scottneumann)

(see all 41 recommendations)

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Showing 1-5 of 399 (next | show all)
Review Originally Posted At: FictionForesight

4 Stars All The Way!

Storm Front is a fast-paced beginning to what's sure to be a long, sarcastic, wildly funny and entrancing series.

A Quick Summary:

Wizard Detective. Has a nice ring to it. Harry Dresden isn't your typical wizard. Besides being the only open wizard -- we're talking yellow pages listing -- he's also the Chicago Police Department's go to expert on all things paranormal. Lately however, business has been slow to say the least, and the bills are beginning to pile up. So when a woman contacts Harry for help finding her husband AND the police department is in need of assistance regarding a double-homicide, Dresden thinks he's hit a proverbial jackpot. But.....you know the old saying, "things that look too good to be true often times are"? Well that couldn't apply more perfectly to Harry Dresden.

"Have you ever been approached by a grim-looking man,

carrying a naked sword with a blade ten miles long in his hands,

in the middle of the night, beneath the stars on the shores of Lake Michigan?"

Dresden realizes that not everything is as it would appear, and maybe his two unique cases aren't that unique after all. What follows is 300 pages of heart-pounding magic and mystery that can either end in Dresden's salvation, or doom. Pulling out all the magical stops, Harry puts his wizarding skills to the test in this thrilling beginning to an epic series.

The Good:

Lets start with the obvious, the pace. This book is such a fast-paced read. I love it when a book has your heart-pounding right in the beginning. It gets the adrenaline going and makes the reading fly by. Normally with a good book I would be upset by this. I mean, sure I like when the book gets me excited, but I hate when I finish a good book. In this case however, the sheer number of books in the series was enough to console me. So pace is a major plus.

I love how real and gritty Jim Butcher makes his characters. Lets start with the wizard himself, Dresden. Dresden is sarcastic, self-aware, classic (in that era-gone-by gentleman style), hilarious and wildly imperfect. He understands and somewhat berates himself for being just OK; and yet somehow, he revels in it. This imperfectness, if you will, doesn't just apply to Dresden. In fact, all of Butcher's characters have very discernible flaws that make them unique and vivid.

The nitty-gritty feel that the characters have, also extends into the world that Butcher has developed for his characters. To give you somewhat of an idea, think Chicago, but not the good side. Dresden lives in a world much like our own but with a bit of darker undertone. This makes it very easy to visualize the experiences that Dresden goes through. Rather than having the author describe every little world detail, Butcher leaves quite a bit to the readers imagination. It made it feel as if you could be walking down the street and simply run into Harry Dresden going about his business, albeit grumpily I'm sure.

Lets talk a bit about the magic system. Unique. That word seems appropriate. I loved that Dresden had to work at magic. Don't get me wrong, I love magic systems that only need a word or a motion of a hand to get something accomplished. However, there is something about a system of magic that requires...well...more. In Harry's case, he has to utilize ingredients, objects, incantations as well as hand motions in order to enact his spells. Oh, and a quick shout-out to the use of potions. It's been quite awhile since I've seen that prevalent in fantasy books. It's nice to see that making a comeback.

Finally, I have to point out that while this book is the first in a long series, it does have an actual ending. Now I don't mean to say that everything from the book is going to have a conclusion by the end of the first novel. In fact, you are left with quite a number of questions. Rather, I mean to say that the premise of this particular book finishes when the pages do. You don't have to worry about any nasty cliffhangers; which if you didn't know already, I despise. It concludes in such a way that you want to continue with the series to learn more, but you don't have to. I like that. It leaves the choice of continuing up to the reader in a way that cliffhangers simply don't. That's not to say that cliffhangers force you to continue, but they compel you because you have to know how the book you've already read ends. Butcher leaves you wanting to continue on the merit of this book alone.

The Bad:

While I liked that a good portion of the setting was left up to the readers to imagine, I did not find this satisfying regarding the characters. Yes I did just get done saying that I loved that the characters were imperfect, which they were and I did in fact love. However, I feel like most of the characters did not get the page time that they deserved. For instance while we do learn a bit about Bob (Dresden's ever helpful and hilarious spirit that lives in a skull), we really don't know too much about him. In fact, that sentence almost sums him up from the book's standpoint. Now I'm sure most of you will be quick to point out that this "bad thing" is a no-brainer. Of course Butcher didn't expand much on the characters, this is only the first in a long series. I get that, I do. But when you review this book, and you only judge it on it's own merit, you'd find it a bit lacking.

The strength of Dresden I found to be a bit...underwhelming. This could have something to do with the fact that this was supposed to be a bit more realistic; urban fantasy if you will. I'm not entirely sure. Maybe in the future this issue will correct itself, but coming from a high-fantasy / magic lover, I just wanted more! I find myself saying this a lot lately, but it's true. I wish Dresden would have been a bit more bad-ass than he was. Don't get me wrong, there was a lot of epic action in this book, but more is always better with me.

Finally, and in a similar note to the above comment, I wanted a bigger ending. I wanted something that made me stop and catch my breath, and that just didn't happen in this one. I'm sure all of you have read something that made you take time to recover after reading. That was what I was looking for and that was not what I got. Don't get me wrong, I loved the book, ending and all. But still.

Other:

I wanted to take the time here to note that this book has some adult themes in it. That's not to say that this isn't a young adult book, but maybe more towards the adult than young. It's got some semi-graphic language to it and a couple of sex(ish) themes. We're not talking Game of Thrones at all, but it isn't Harry Potter either. Don't let this dissuade you from reading, it's definitely worth it, I just wanted to give a heads up.

The other thing to note with this series is that it was a short-lived television show. While it has been awhile since I've watched the show, I will say that I found both to be appealing in their own ways. They are definitely not exact replicas of each other, but they are both well done.

Overall:

This was a good book standalone or as a start to a great series. It had funny and realistic characters, a good plot point, some great action scenes and not a small amount of magic. It was gritty. It was sarcastic. It had adult-themes without being overly unnecessary. What more do you need? Storm Front will leave you speeding off to the bookstore for more, and with 17 books, Butcher aims to please.

(www.FictionForesight.com) ( )
  FictionForesight | Apr 26, 2016 |
Great introduction to this supernatural detective series with a glimpse at a few of the recurring characters. ( )
  saohicwitch | Apr 21, 2016 |
A fast paced urban fantasy series kicks off to a good start. I have only read Short stories from this author before and while I enjoyed them they didnt make me want to seek out more. This book did. But I didnt give it five stars for the simple reason that it wasnt of the same caliber for me as Patricia Briggs or Kelley Armstrong. Still according to other reviews this book is a "weak start" so I'm looking forward to things getting better and better. ( )
  SashaM | Apr 20, 2016 |
Lots of fun!

Fast paced with not too many characters to keep track of. Harry's a tragic but funny guy, and that turns this book into a true page turner!

Can't wait to get started on the next one!
  bartt95 | Apr 10, 2016 |
I’ve reviewed this book before but I was writing for a different blog at the time. Also, it has stood the test of time quite well and I feel it deserves another review.

Harry Dresden, the only openly practicing wizard in the country, is about to have a very rough weekend. Set in the city of Chicago, Harry must help the local Special Investigations unit figure out who is behind the grisly deaths of two people. While Harry would like to steer clear of this one and just focus on the mundane case of a missing husband, rent’s due and the Chicago PD is willing to pay for his services.

Harry is a very interesting lead character. He’s got this past that he doesn’t really want to talk about. Then he has this whole life that seems to be built around walking on the edges. The wizarding community doesn’t like that he so openly practices his abilities (let alone listing his services in the yellow pages). Meanwhile, the bulk of normal society scoffs at him and asks him to perform at kids’ birthday parties. He’s also a flawed character. He has trouble trusting people and he’s sometimes arrogant and bullheaded. Yet he is also a gentlemen to the ladies without being a chauvinist and is always willing to fight for what is right.

The plot moves quickly but there’s also these luscious moments of introspection tossed in throughout the story. I got to know Harry but was never bored with the ‘getting to know you’ parts. Harry’s wrapped up in two cases and his efforts on one or the other wrap around each other, always keeping me guessing as to where things will end up.

Then we have a plethora of interesting side characters. The infamous Lt. Karrin Murphy of the Chicago PD is both a support and pain in the arse to Harry. These two don’t fully trust each other and that leads to difficulties in coordinating efforts. Bob, Harry’s wizened friend, has some of the best lines of the book. Mister is a 30 pound cat that deigns to call Harry’s small apartment home. Susan Rodriguez is a reporter of supernatural events and doesn’t mind doing a little flirting to pick up a lead. Meanwhile, we have John Marcone, one of the main crime bosses of the city.

This is the book that got me hooked on urban fantasy. Now, years later, after having read many, many urban fantasy books, I have returned to it. This book has stood the test of time and is still one of my favorites of the genre. I do believe I enjoyed this book even more on the second reading. There’s plenty of small details I had forgotten. I’ve read up through Book 14, Cold Days, and I really enjoyed coming back to beginning.

The Narration: James Marsters makes a great Harry Dresden. He’s got the beaten down PI voice, with a little gravel in it. I also love his uppity voice for Bob. His female character voices are believable and each one is distinct from the next. ( )
  DabOfDarkness | Mar 31, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 399 (next | show all)
Storm Front's premise is pretty slim.. But Butcher makes it work, through a combination of interesting characters, tight plotting, and fresh, breezy writing. This is definitely not deep reading, but it is a whole lot of fun.
added by Shortride | editSF Site, Victoria Strauss (Aug 1, 2000)
 

» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Butcher, Jimprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Langowski, JürgenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marsters, JamesNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McGrath, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
For Debbie Chester, who taught me everything I really needed to know about writing. And for my father, who taught me everything I really needed to know about living. I miss you dad.
First words
I heard the mailman approach my office door, half an hour earlier than usual.
Quotations
Paranoid? Probably. But just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that there isn't an invisible demon about to eat your face.
"An actual wizard?" he asked, grinning, as though I should let him in on the joke. "Spells and potions? Demons and incantations? Subtle and quick to anger?"
"Not so subtle."
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451457811, Mass Market Paperback)

For Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, business, to put it mildly, 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.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:01:03 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A modern-day mage and consultant to the police finds his stale life suddenly enlivened by the presence of a rival in the black arts.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 7 descriptions

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