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Fool Moon (The Dresden Files, Book 2) by Jim…
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Fool Moon (The Dresden Files, Book 2) (edition 2001)

by Jim Butcher

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,555179579 (3.89)283
Member:mamzel
Title:Fool Moon (The Dresden Files, Book 2)
Authors:Jim Butcher
Info:Roc (2001), Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:2013
Rating:***1/2
Tags:Chicago, wizard, murder, werewolves, mystery, AD, 13 in 13

Work details

Fool Moon by Jim Butcher

  1. 10
    Gateways by F. Paul Wilson (Scottneumann)
  2. 32
    Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews (AFHeart)
    AFHeart: Like Dresden, the book is about a loner with parental issues who has natural powers. In the Kate Daniels series she is not used to having friends or trusting others because of her natural magic. Also like Dresden there is sexual tension but realistic, there is violence in fighting demons but it is not gory for the sake of gore. Kate Daniels books have more world building.… (more)
  3. 01
    The Haunted Air by F. Paul Wilson (Scottneumann)
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Showing 1-5 of 177 (next | show all)
I enjoyed the book - but not as much as the first in the series.

I find Harry ends up in a few too many precarious situations per page considering he is a being of such power and intellect. Really the problems seem to be manufactured beyond the supernatural forces aligned against him - he just is so regularly missing some item/ingredient/etc. at the moment he needs it.

Maybe it'd be boring if he could just nuke things from orbit - but occasionally I'd like to read that he didn't drop/forget/get disarmed/etc. just at the moment he is in desperate need of said item/preparation/etc.

Still I liked the book - and will likely continue on as I like Harry even though he seems to be eternally doomed to find himself between a rock and a hard place regardless of his power/preparation/senses. ( )
  Industrialstr | Aug 12, 2015 |
Pros: great world-building (and I kind of hate him for making it look so easy, not that I'm bitter or anything); terrific humor; good plot; strong characterization; lots of active female characters; wonderful denouement.

Improvements: in the previous book, men were described in terms of what they did; women were introduced by how attractive they were and what physical features made them so. Granted, all the women were attractive, which is rather sweet of Butcher, I guess, but it does kind of miss the point. In this novel, the women are still mostly gorgeous, but one of them gets to be just kind of okay-looking; and at one point, Harry Dresden makes mention of a good-looking FBI agent and then points out he’s talking about a guy. So that's cool.

Room for improvement and reason to hope: Harry Dresden is still a total dork when it comes to women. I don't have exact quotes, because I listened to the audio version of this book; but he says something about hating to be rescued by women because he feels like he ought to be the one doing the rescuing. Okay: 'cause first of all, Harry, you'd love to be rescued by a man? Or at all? And second of all, you know very well that the kick-ass women you hang out with aren’t any too fond of being rescued by anyone, especially you. But Harry gets totally called out on being a provincial lout in this respect. So maybe there’s hope for him. Especially if he keeps getting hit on the head.

Con: Way too many large-breasted women struttin’ around in the altogether. Seriously, dude. This isn’t supposed to be that kind of fantasy novel.

Conclusion: If you haven’t read this series, you should check it out. Probably a good read even if you get a paper version rather than listening to the recording as read by James “My British Accent May Have Its Flaws, But It Still Makes American Women Swoon” Marsters. ( )
  Deborah_Markus | Aug 8, 2015 |
An engaging character and a good page turner. Have read few werewolf / wizard type books so can't critique. I enjoyed the book though. ( )
  skraft001 | Aug 1, 2015 |
Six-word review: Gruesome lycanthropic killings challenge investigator wizard.

Extended review:

Number two in the Dresden Files series gives us consulting wizard Harry Dresden on the trail of murderous werewolves. As in the first book, there is a lot of graphic detail involving limbs, organs, blood, and other organic matter. Within a context that's liberal with humor and casts frequent sly winks toward the audience, Butcher (whose name does resonate ungently with me) doesn't play those scenes for laughs, thank goodness; rather, he stresses their gravity by showing us the intensity of Harry's reaction to them. Still, I do find those passages hard to read. They're very far from the nice, clean, civilized murders of your typical cozy mystery.

But I wasn't expecting Mary Poppins, especially not after the first book. So this isn't a complaint, just a comment.

In fact, I'm liking the series well enough to have gone on to book three, Grave Peril, the minute I finished this one.

It's interesting to notice how Butcher keeps his main character sympathetic despite the supernatural forces that he can command. Harry's humanity is emphasized in a number of ways. For one thing, like many a popular fictional detective, he's perpetually in financial arrears and struggling to make the rent, so he has to take some jobs he really doesn't want. For another, he has uneven and often frustrating relationships with women. The wizard police (and the Chicago police) are often on his case. He's also prone to impulsive actions that backfire or compromise his position. Most especially, though, I like the fact that he has to work to perform his magical feats, and they cost him something--sometimes a lot. They're not always successful, either, as when he is already exhausted or when he lacks a focusing device such as a staff to help him channel his energy.

We also see him doing some reflecting and soul-searching--not enough to impede the action, but enough to show us that he is haunted by parts of his past and that he agonizes over moral and ethical questions, even tackling (page 388) the nature of evil. He is strongly tempted by the easy choices and the safe courses, and yet time and again he finds the courage to do the right thing even against his own apparent interests. Flawed, conflicted, and plagued by doubts, Harry nonetheless appeals to our better natures. I hope Butcher can continue to maintain that tricky balance.

Another noteworthy feature is something that I would call covert literariness. I see it in deft phrasing such as this:

The walls shook around the beast, as though its very presence were enough to make reality shudder. (page 206)

and apt images such as this:

The soreness lifted out of my muscles, and my cloudy, cloggy thought process cleared as though someone had flushed my synapses with jalapeño. (page 244)

and occasional lyrical passages like this:

She tensed at first, and then melted against me with a deliciously feminine sort of willingness, a soft abandoning of distance that left her body, in all its dark beauty, pressed against mine. (page 312)

Why covert? He doesn't call attention to it. He doesn't show off his vocabulary. He keeps the common touch, and we barely notice departures from ordinary conversational prose such as "without" in this sentence:

It was dim inside, and from what I could hear, it was still raining without. (page 257)

--for which I can almost forgive him his persistent use of "quirk" as a verb. He doesn't make self-conscious literary allusions or indulge in a lot of complex sentence structure. He does, as is all too rare these days, use the subjunctive correctly, as in constructions such as the quote from page 206 above; although he offsets it with expressions such as "if I'd have been" (which expands to "if I had have been"; the "have" should be struck out). Moreover, he slips in little indications of cultivated tastes, such as a reference to operatic overtures. I have an idea that Butcher is carefully managing his character to maintain an Everyman persona while hinting at other, broader, deeper dimensions.

What raised this installment from a 3 to a 3½ for me was the riveting description of the subjective state of a werewolf in the full grip of bloodlust and a mighty surge of bestial power. I've seen something like this done effectively once before, in Alice Hoffman's Second Nature, and there too I found it emotionally compelling. I don't think Butcher's handling of that portion could stand any improvement at all. ( )
5 vote Meredy | Jun 20, 2015 |
Fool Moon moved faster than Storm Front and I enjoyed the ride. I found out more about Harry and his past. How magic works in this world became clearer. I thought it was truly clever how the various werewolf myths were used. Trust was an important theme in this novel. Whom do we trust and why? Another question raised was when does a person deserve knowledge, not wrapping in a safe cocoon. These are good questions to ponder. ( )
  Jean_Sexton | May 22, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 177 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (13 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jim Butcherprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chong, VincentIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marsters, JamesNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McGrath, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I never used to keep close track of the phases of the moon.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451458125, Mass Market Paperback)

Could a werewolf be loose in Chicago? Common sense says no. The grisly evidence says yes. So does Harry Dresden. And with his weird connections, he should know.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:57:51 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

When the corpse of a brutally mutilated murder victim turns up at the time of the full moon, accompanied by some most unusual paw prints, professional wizard and supernatural investigator Harry Dresden finds himself searching Chicago for the werewolf stalking the city.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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