Friday, 24 January 2014

#CBR6 Book 3: "White Night" by Jim Butcher

Page count: 452 pages
Audio book length: 14 hrs and 13 mins
Rating: 4 stars

Chicago wizard and now a Warden of the White Council, Harry Dresden, gets called in by his friend Sgt. Karrin Murphy (she got demoted after helping Harry out in the last book) to look into a series of mysterious deaths. A lot of women have been found dead around Chicago, in what appears at first glance to be suicides, but Murphy and her team at Special Investigations can tell something is off, and Harry finds magically hidden writing that suggests the women have been killed because of their magical abilities.

As Harry begins to investigate, he starts to understand why he's not heard anything about these mysterious disappearances before. A lot of the dead women were last seen with a tall man wearing a grey cloak (just like the Wardens wear!) and others with a thin, dark-haired, attractive man, fitting the description of Thomas Raith, White Court vampire and Harry's half-brother. The fact that Thomas has been even more distant than usual lately and isn't answering Harry's calls isn't helping.

As well as trying to figure out who the identity of the serial killer, or possibly killers, and trying to clear his brother's name (because Harry is convinced his brother is innocent), Harry is trying to teach his apprentice Molly Carpenter control and self-restraint. She's excellent at hiding herself behind magical veils, and keeps trying to countermand Harry's orders and sneak along on missions she should stay away from.

I'm pretty hooked on this series now, and James Marsters keeps being an excellent narrator. Having now discovered that with the Audible app, I can play the audio books at 1.5 speed, reducing the time I spend listening (my main problem with audio books is that if I was just reading the book myself, it would be so much FASTER), but I still get full enjoyment out of them. The world building is pretty much established, and Harry's no longer a loner, trying to manage everything on his own, and as a result, is much more fun to read about. All long running serials like this become a bit like a good TV show. You don't just tune in to see what happens to the main character, the supporting cast is just as important. Murphy, Thomas and Molly are all great at keeping Harry grounded, and the conversation Murphy has with Harry about his increasingly tenuous control on his anger has been a long time coming.

At this rate, going through one or two of them per month, I have just enough credits saved up to be able to catch up in time for book 15's release in May. Then I can start impatiently waiting for new books with the rest of the world.

Crossposted on Cannonball Read.

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