Blood Rites by Jim Butcher
- Mass Market Paperback: 372 pages
- Publisher: Roc; 1ST edition (August 3, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0451459873
- ISBN-13: 978-0451459879
Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only professional wizard, takes on a case as a favor to his friend Thomas-a vampire of dubious integrity-only to become the prime suspect in a series of ghastly murders.
Harry Dresden investigating murder on the set of a porno. Seriously, what else needs to be said here? As a reader, what more could you ask for?
Want puppies? The book opens with Harry collecting puppies stolen and guarded by winged, poo-flinging demonic monkeys. Everyone knows that the only thing cool than monkeys is demonic monkeys. The poo-flinging is really just a given.
Want vampires? Well this is a Dresden Files book. In the unlikely event that there are no demons, fallen angels or fae – you’ve got vampires. Hell, most of the time you have all of those.
As you can tell by my reading list, I’m a big fan of the Dresden Files. One of my biggest concerns was that I was falling behind on the series. Audible changed that all for me. Honestly, it was the local library before Audible. I checked out one of the books in audio from the library. From there I went back and in Audible started buying the series all over again in audio. James Marsters is by far one of the best narrators I have listened to yet.
That said, the book itself is the bread and butter of what I look for in most of my urban fantasy reading. I am looking for action, magic, fantasy and a hint of smart-ass humor. Mostly in that order, but let’s be honest – smart-assed humor probably ranks above fantasy in that line-up.
Ranking up pretty high on my list of things I love about this series is the fact that while Harry seems to get more powerful as the series continues on, he was never the most powerful wizard of a generation or anything like that. Dangerous, sure… Mortal, most definitely. Yet still he seems to manage to worm his way out of seemingly impossible situations, though never unscathed.
Of the series itself, this one is fairly key and is a great example of why I prefer to read a series in order. There are several changes to Harry’s world that are introduced in this book. Big changes. Ones that are going to affect the rest of the series. It’s not “Harry turns into a woman, grows a third arm that casts only ice magic and a pair of eyes in the back of his head that can see only into the past but are near-sided” kind of changes, but ones that feel to me like the reward for caring enough about the characters to stick with them.
I’ll give this one a solid four and a half stars as I like monkeys and puppies easily as much as I like Harry Dresden.