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Dead Beat by Jim Butcher
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Dead Beat

by Jim Butcher

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Dresden Files (7)

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4,464881,099 (4.32)132
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English (87)  German (1)  All languages (88)
Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
Listening to this story is like visiting with an old and dear friend. I've read it before, and I'll probably read it again. Not because I love zombies, they are one of my least favorite of the supernatural villains, but for the sheer joy of watching Harry Dresden never give up. Also, Sue the dinosaur is a thrill. ( )
  MrsLee | Feb 21, 2015 |
Another great entry in the Dresden files. Butcher has found a way to make Harry encounter something different and unique in each volume of this series, all the while making Harry a more interesting, complex, and growing character at the same time. Very well done and very entertaining. Harry is becoming very powerful, and it will be very intriguing to see how he handles it. ( )
  utbw42 | Dec 21, 2014 |
I think this is my favourite Dresden Files novel to date. Jim Butcher has been doing some incredible stealth world/plot building in this series that I just didn't notice until the opening few chapters of this one. Throughout the whole thing we've got Harry dealing with Mavra and his hand, and him learning to deal with Thomas being his brother, and the Red Court stuff and Susan, the whole faerie realms and outstanding Mab dramas, things like going deeper with Bob and Harry's personal history, the whole Lasciel coin thing, and...

See? He's covered a heap of ground in this series and it comes to the fore here where Butcher can sort of pick and choose what known elements work for the story he's currently telling. Don't need the Knights, no problem. Haven't seen Billy and the werewolves for a while? They're still around and useful here, call them in. It's sort of fantastic!

The story told here is dark, not like angsty dark or gratuitous "darker and edgier than the last installment!" just turning dark. It's centred around necromancy which had some really cool modern upgrades for the magic related to the zombies and things and a memorable cast of baddies. There's the backdrop that the White Council's war against the Red Court is going badly and Harry's character is evolving. It's this part of the book that was especially confronting, but it was realistic - it's good character development. Here's a dude who's been hideously burned and has associated fear of using some of his powers (fire), upon which he previously relied - he's questioning himself and his abilities. He's dealing with the aftermath of a lot of major personal losses over the last few books and a lot of overhanging stressful situations. He's grumpy, he's withdrawn and he's human. This is what happens when humans have to do deal with inhuman levels of confrontation and stress.

It's not gloomy, but some of my favourite moments in this book were the ones where Billy was asking him if he was ok and Dresden having to question and reflect on how his path has wandered. Things like the Lasciel deal where he has to confront whether or not he's still truly acting on black and white morality and, if not, what his grey is and how he can justify it. This is particularly nice considering his overhanging angst about McCoy's past and the whole feeling of "I thought you were the epitome of goodness and light, you bastard!"

The actual necromancy story arc resolution was solid. I both like the future story element hints and opportunities that the Warden stuff opens up and it sort of hurts my teeth from excess cheese or something. I'll read the next few and come down on one side of the fence or another on that.

I also really liked the addition of Butters - it's nice having someone who is cool while also being realistic about how people would cope if their car was chased by zombies. We're not all wise cracking badass wizards in the face of that and I think having him there added an element of balance.

And comedic value:

“Screw up my life?" He stared at me for a second and then said, deadpan, "I'm a five-foot-three, thirty-seven-year-old, single, Jewish medical examiner who needs to pick up his lederhosen from the dry cleaners so that he can play in a one-man polka band at Oktoberfest tomorrow." He pushed up his glasses with his forefinger, folded his arms, and said, "Do your worst.”


Gold!

Finally, let's address the dinosaur in the room. I loved it. The established necromancy/magic laws supported it as a logical move, it was stupidly fun and very Dresden. Seriously, it's like Butcher had a dream about Dresden on a dinosaur and mapped a magic system/plot around it so it could happen. I'm cool with that.
( )
  heaven_star | Oct 20, 2014 |
I think this is my favourite Dresden Files novel to date. Jim Butcher has been doing some incredible stealth world/plot building in this series that I just didn't notice until the opening few chapters of this one. Throughout the whole thing we've got Harry dealing with Mavra and his hand, and him learning to deal with Thomas being his brother, and the Red Court stuff and Susan, the whole faerie realms and outstanding Mab dramas, things like going deeper with Bob and Harry's personal history, the whole Lasciel coin thing, and...

See? He's covered a heap of ground in this series and it comes to the fore here where Butcher can sort of pick and choose what known elements work for the story he's currently telling. Don't need the Knights, no problem. Haven't seen Billy and the werewolves for a while? They're still around and useful here, call them in. It's sort of fantastic!

The story told here is dark, not like angsty dark or gratuitous "darker and edgier than the last installment!" just turning dark. It's centred around necromancy which had some really cool modern upgrades for the magic related to the zombies and things and a memorable cast of baddies. There's the backdrop that the White Council's war against the Red Court is going badly and Harry's character is evolving. It's this part of the book that was especially confronting, but it was realistic - it's good character development. Here's a dude who's been hideously burned and has associated fear of using some of his powers (fire), upon which he previously relied - he's questioning himself and his abilities. He's dealing with the aftermath of a lot of major personal losses over the last few books and a lot of overhanging stressful situations. He's grumpy, he's withdrawn and he's human. This is what happens when humans have to do deal with inhuman levels of confrontation and stress.

It's not gloomy, but some of my favourite moments in this book were the ones where Billy was asking him if he was ok and Dresden having to question and reflect on how his path has wandered. Things like the Lasciel deal where he has to confront whether or not he's still truly acting on black and white morality and, if not, what his grey is and how he can justify it. This is particularly nice considering his overhanging angst about McCoy's past and the whole feeling of "I thought you were the epitome of goodness and light, you bastard!"

The actual necromancy story arc resolution was solid. I both like the future story element hints and opportunities that the Warden stuff opens up and it sort of hurts my teeth from excess cheese or something. I'll read the next few and come down on one side of the fence or another on that.

I also really liked the addition of Butters - it's nice having someone who is cool while also being realistic about how people would cope if their car was chased by zombies. We're not all wise cracking badass wizards in the face of that and I think having him there added an element of balance.

And comedic value:

“Screw up my life?" He stared at me for a second and then said, deadpan, "I'm a five-foot-three, thirty-seven-year-old, single, Jewish medical examiner who needs to pick up his lederhosen from the dry cleaners so that he can play in a one-man polka band at Oktoberfest tomorrow." He pushed up his glasses with his forefinger, folded his arms, and said, "Do your worst.”


Gold!

Finally, let's address the dinosaur in the room. I loved it. The established necromancy/magic laws supported it as a logical move, it was stupidly fun and very Dresden. Seriously, it's like Butcher had a dream about Dresden on a dinosaur and mapped a magic system/plot around it so it could happen. I'm cool with that.
( )
  heaven_star | Oct 20, 2014 |
This one got a bit long winded in the philosophical reflections department, particularly when the tension was high. Alright, already! Yes, we know he's making difficult moral choices. Does he have to yammer on about them? This book was lightened by the presence of Butters, the mortician and particularly Warden Ramirez in chapter 41. Nicely done. Looking forward to seeing them again.
  2wonderY | Jul 30, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jim Butcherprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chong, VincentIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marsters, JamesNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my son. The best thing that ever happened to me. I love you, Short-stuff.
First words
On the whole, we're a murderous race.
Quotations
From Morgan, this was the equivalent of Emperor Constantine converting to Christianity. He was almost admitting that he had been wrong. I reached into my pocket, pulled out a penny, and dropped it to the floor.
"What was that for?" he asked.
"I'm just making sure gravity is still online," I said.
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Paranormal investigations are Harry Dresden's business, and Chicago is his beat as he tried to bring law and order to a world of wizards and monsters that exists alongside everyday life. And though most inhabitants of the Windy City don't believe in magic, the Special Investigations department of the Chicago PD knows better.

Karrin Murphy is the head of the SI and Harry's good friend. So when a killer vampire threatens to destroy Murphy's reputation unless Harry does her bidding, he has no choice. The vampire wants the Word of Kemmier [whatever that is] and all the power that comes with it. Now Harry is in a race against time - and six merciless necromancers - to find the Word before Chicago experiences a Halloween night to wake the dead ...
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 045146091X, Mass Market Paperback)

When a killer vampire threatens to destroy head of Special Investigations Karrin Murphy's reputation unless Harry delivers the powerful Word of Kemmler to her, he has no choice. Now Harry is in a race against time to find the Word before Chicago experiences a Halloween night to wake the dead.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:28:11 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Chicago wizard Harry Dresden rushes to solve the riddle of a vampire's demand for the Word of Keppler in order to save the city, and his friend Karrin Murphy, head of the city's Special Investigations department, from the threat of supernatural horror.… (more)

» see all 7 descriptions

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