TITLE : Storm Front (The Dresden Files #1)
AUTHOR : Jim Butcher
GENRE : Urban Fantasy, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller Fantasy
FR RATING : ⭐⭐⭐⭐(3.5 – 4 Stars)
DATE OF PUBLISHING : April 1st 2000
Storm Front by Jim Butcher is the first book in the well-known and well-loved urban fantasy series, The Dresden Files. It has the feel of a noir fiction and follows Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden the only wizard PI of Chicago. I have heard good things about this series on Youtube and have been wanting to try it for some time. When the chance came in the form of a buddy read for the series, I jumped at the opportunity to dive right in.
This book follows Harry Dresden who is the only Professional Wizard PI for hire in Chicago. Solving supernatural crimes is what he does best. He works with a special unit in the police department of Chicago as a consultant on strange cases with no natural or plausible explanations. He relies on these cases to make a living and being a Wizard is not exactly making him roll in money. So when an opportunity to make some quick cash comes in the form of finding a missing person, he decides to take the case. He also gets called into helping his friend and head of the SI(Special Investigations) unit Karrin Murphy. She approaches him with a new case involving a double murder and black magic. He takes it on as well because a man has to pay his bills, right? Only things are not that simple and all kinds of new dangers await him on this path of investigation. On his way to figuring out who is behind the murders, things start to get complicated, and there are more people involved in it than he first thought. Being the only Wizard in town capable of magic, he is also under scrutiny by law.
Storm Front is basically an introduction to the series and is meant to be considered as the book that gives the readers an understanding of the characters, the world with supernatural creatures and magic. This is the initial setup and introduction for the series and builds the foundation on which this humongous series is to rest on. The mix of murder mystery and paranormal/supernatural creatures is very fascinating. This was a fast-paced, page-turner and the humor and intrigue kept me engaged till the end.
Harry was an interesting character and his voice and narration are what make this story what it is. He is a bit of an oddball and has the tongue-in-cheek and dry humor that makes most of his interactions hilarious. He has issues when it comes to dealing with women and you will probably come across situations when he behaves in eye-roll-worthy ways that are going to annoy you at times. I found him to be silly and his character flaws kind of made a lot of serious, life-threatening situations funny as well. You will know what I am saying when you read it. The side characters who get introduced in this book were a mixed bag for me. I am not quite sure how to feel about them. As of right now, I don’t have all the information to make a clear read on any of them. But I am interested in many of these characters. There is a lot of potential for them and I can’t wait to see the direction author will take with each of these characters. So if you feel the characters in this were a bit underdeveloped, I would say it’s normal because the series is planned for 20+ books and as we move along we will be getting more layers of each of them. So I am looking forward to figuring each of them out and following on Harry’s journey of solving crimes. The action and stakes get higher as the story progresses and just like any good murder mystery, the pace picks up ramping up the intensity and gluing me to the pages till the end. I was fully invested and couldn’t put it down. It was a satisfying read and I am excited to pick up Fool Moon for our next Goodreads Buddy Read.
The themes of this book and certain aspects of it reminded me of Hyde by Craig Russel and also the Kingdom of The Wicked series by Kerri Maniscalco. I am not saying they are the same, just that some things that reminded me of these books. The black magic element is a common thread in all of these, so it could be that.
Overall, The book is a solid intro to the series, and the plot and pacing accompany it wonderfully. I gave the book 3.5 – 4 stars and had fun reading it. I would recommend this series to anyone looking to dip their toes into the urban fantasy genre that’s not romance-oriented. If you are looking for a quick, fun, easy-to-get-through book with fantastical elements and an accessible world, then this book is for you. Each of these books is self-contained and has its own plot and resolution, so you can always pick them up as you go. It’s also the kind of book I would recommend as a reading slump-buster. It’s the perfect series to binge-read and has the feel of the cozy murder mystery stories with non-stop action. I highly recommend picking it up.
HARRY DRESDEN — WIZARD
Lost Items Found. Paranormal Investigations. Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates. No Love Potions, Endless Purses, or Other Entertainment.
Harry Dresden is the best at what he does. Well, technically, he’s the only at what he does. So when the Chicago P.D. has a case that transcends mortal creativity or capability, they come to him for answers. For the “everyday” world is actually full of strange and magical things—and most don’t play well with humans. That’s where Harry comes in. Takes a wizard to catch a—well, whatever. There’s just one problem. 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. And that’s when things start to get interesting.
Magic – it can get a guy killed.
Source : Goodreads