Storm Front (The Dresden Files #1) by Jim Butcher
audiobook read by James Marsters
audiobook read by James Marsters
Publication date: 02 February 2003 by Ace/Roc
Category: Adult Urban Fantasy
Keywords: Urban fantasy, paranormal, wizards, magic
Format: Mass market paperback, eBook, audiobook
My name is Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden. Conjure by it at your own risk. I'm a wizard. I work out of an office in midtown Chicago. As far as I know, I'm the only openly practicing professional wizard in the country. You can find me in the yellow pages, under Wizards. Believe it or not, I'm the only one there.
With rent past due and a decent meal becoming an issue of some importance, Harry needs work, and soon. A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters to vampires, while he himself is under suspicion of the crimes. One thing is certain, if he can't stop whoever is on this killing spree, Harry will be the next victim.
I first read Storm Front a couple of years ago after hearing some really great things about it. I remember liking it and thinking that I would probably read the rest of the series someday, but I was in no hurry to do it. Fast forward a couple of years and I still hadn’t gotten around to any of the sequels. But it still drew my eye whenever I was in the bookstore and I finally decided to give the series another try. This time, I decided to go back and re-read Storm Front as an audiobook. So many people told me that the series was truly awesome in audio. After hearing that James Marsters (Spike in Buffy) was the reader, I was sold.
Harry Dresden is a down on his luck wizard who’s just trying to make a living, but he can’t seem to catch a break. After a couple is find with their hearts blown out Harry finds himself in the midst of some very dark magic. Unfortunately he’s the only professional wizard in town and suddenly becomes the number one suspect.
Harry is socially awkward, dry, shrewd, and a little bitter, but he’s also extremely likable. He just wants to get the job done and not get killed in the process. He’s also clever and has an innate sense of honor and justice. I think part of Harry’s appeal is that he’s an underdog, and I love a good underdog. And James Marsters is a wonderful narrator for the series. With his unhurried voice with just a hint of sarcasm, he perfectly embodies what I think Harry Dresden would sound like. The mystery wasn't the most original but I still had fun watching Harry put the clues together.
Storm Front also has a great cast of secondary characters. Bob the snarky spirit stuck in a skull cracked me up and I really like Murphy, Harry’s long suffering friend and police lieutenant. I know this is only the first book but I am really hoping that something romantic happens between Harry and Murphy down the road. Don’t tell me if it happens, though! I want to be surprised.
All in all, I thought this was a solid intro the the series and a thoroughly fun read. I enjoyed getting to know quirky cast of characters and I am definitely going to read (or listen) to the next book in the series.
Visit the author online at www.jim-butcher.com and his blog