Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Storm Front - Jim Butcher (Dresden Files Series #1)

This book definitely requires some suspension of disbelief. And strangely for me, more so than other science-fiction/fantasy that I've read. Maybe because it sort-of takes place in the normal world, but is just filled with complete weirdness. I suppose it's no different than the True Blood vampire books I've been getting into lately, but for some reason, this one just did a number on my head. The main character, Harry Dresden is a wizard. He's also a private investigator who helps out the police department from time to time. There isn't really an explanation (that I can recall) as to how he became a wizard. It's unclear to me whether his parents were wizards and he was born into it - or whether he studied really hard and became a wizard (there's another charater in the book who studies and becomes one, so this is clearly possible - though Harry's participation in some secret societies suggest he's something more). When a couple is found brutally murdered, Harry is brought in to find the killer. It's clear that some on the police force believe in his supernatural powers - and buy his explanation that there are some vampires and other spritely creatures involved. And there are others on the force that think he is a complete hoax. And so Harry goes about trying to solve the crime just like any other private detective might - only along the way he has the help of a fairy who loves pizza, and a goblin of some sort that lives in a skull in his basement. At least to keep things familiar to the detective genre, the author made Harry totally awkward when it comes to women, and there is some disastrous dating that also goes on in the story. I'm a bit intrigued by the concept here, and I think I'll read at least one or two more in this series (of 13), but I'm just not sure how much I can buy into a wizard detective who solves crimes - it just seems too easy for him to conjure up a spell that seems a bit too much like cheating to figure it all out.

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