April 19th, 2011, 12:33 AM
It never entered my mind
I had a similar reaction and gave up on Harry Dresden after book four - Summer Knight. Maybe sometime in the future I will give him a second chance. I've been able to continue with Codex Alera by lowering my expectations and trusting the reviewers here who claimed the series gets a little better after Furies of Calderon. Writing good entertainment is not quite as easy as it seems, and Butcher IS a natural storyteller who has the knack of making you read just one more page, just one more chapter before turning off the light and going to sleep.
Originally Posted by Pvt
April 19th, 2011, 05:26 AM
The Codex Alera was pretty decent. Much of the setting/characters/plot twists were cliched, but the characters are so likable that it's easy to forgive that. Butcher does a great job making you care.
And the first one is easily the worst of the bunch.
As to people that don't like Dresden after four books, I guess it's just not your thing. I think by book 4 you're either gonna like it or not, it's not getting much better than that. I've heard complaints about the first two, but if you aren't enjoying it by book 3 it's time to give it a rest and find something else you WILL like, IMO.
April 19th, 2011, 03:38 PM
Originally Posted by thirstyVan
In the first couple books, I was upset with some repeated phrases. And the fact that Harry could get beaten by just about anything. :P (Seems like so many creatures can be a threat to even a powerful wizard on the White Council).
April 19th, 2011, 04:04 PM
A mere player
I think reading several Dresdens in a row can definitely burn you out... so I've found the best way to read them is no more than two at a time, and something in between. Come back when his style is fresh again. They are entertaining. I do get annoyed that every time he has to make a decision, it's three paragraphs of backstory discussing his options and reasoning before he does so.
As far as the Codex, I finished the series a few months ago, and found the third and fourth books the most intriguing, and the final conclusion to the series a bit underwhelming.
April 19th, 2011, 04:15 PM
Yes... once I read about 3 in 2 or 3 days. I got a bit tired by the 3rd. :P
Originally Posted by txshusker
April 25th, 2011, 03:16 PM
I'm up to book 9 of Dresden now - I'd tend to agree by book 3 or 4 you'll either love them or hate them.
So far I'm really enjoying how the series is progressing, however Butchers writing style can sometimes be grating. At this point I know what each of the main characters and places look like - it feels sometimes as if he's just cut and pasting some of this stuff!!
I get that he's trying to ensure that you can pick up any book in the series but by book 9 if you haven't read the earlier stuff then your in trouble anyway.
April 25th, 2011, 07:40 PM
Hmm...I always liked that I knew the characters, yet in each book there were different situations. It's not like the same old mysteries and characters are used but with a twist. Butcher shows changes in the characters. Hey, especially at the end of Changes. :P
Originally Posted by pocket
April 26th, 2011, 01:24 PM
Just wanted to check in to say I'm a Dresden addict. In fact, it's probably my favorite ongoing fantasy series right now. I genuinely look forward to each new book and it's nice to have them come out relatively on schedule. Once of the things I like the most is how Butcher throws in pretty much anything and everything from myth and legend. Anything goes.
I read Side Jobs last month and can't wait until Ghost Story.
April 26th, 2011, 01:30 PM
Yes, I've eaten up every Dresden story, even the smaller novellas. All are great. :P
Originally Posted by ezchaos
April 27th, 2011, 08:58 AM
Just finished Dead Beat and it was by far the best one yet. Even knowing about the end ahead of time, the rest of the book was so much richer than all the books before. I love it how most of the factions and plot lines from the previous books showed up in DB or were at least touched upon.
April 30th, 2011, 05:32 AM
I just finished Summer Knight and I think I'm done with Butcher. I've read 5 Dresden books and Furies of Calderon and nothing about his popularity makes sense to me.
April 30th, 2011, 11:16 AM
Each to their own. I think some books, which others love, are weird, confusing, and boring. (For example, Malazan Book of the Fallen series).
Originally Posted by Pvt
Butcher has a character with special powers, but not too overpowered (though I often wish he had more power), fairly smart (I hate dumb main characters, or lovesick ones), resourceful, has some great friends and contacts, etc. The antagonists are not (at least in the Dresden Files) plain I-want-to-conquer-the-world bad guys. They have different powers. The books have differing plots.
With some series, you know what the next book will hold because they are so similar. With the Dresden Files, the only thing I know is that Harry will probably win at the end (and that, actually, doesn't always happen ).
Butcher's writing was a bit rough at the start, but after a few books it was great.
"...nothing about his popularity makes sense to me."
Actually, I can't understand why he isn't more popular.
April 30th, 2011, 12:36 PM
Dresden is good
I'm with you- can't understand how anyone could NOT love Butcher/Dresden. We might wish he wouldn't be a pushover for any woman in trouble, or that there was a bit less angst in his decisionmaking, or that he actually made money in his work occasionally, but overall the Dresden books are great fun and I always look forward to the next one. Every writer has some trait or habit that can be annoying. As someone commented much earlier in this thread, one way to avoid being annoyed by a writer's quirks is to avoid reading two or more of same author in a row. I go one step further and alternate between genres as well as authors- UF, mystery, SF, fantasy (but not the huge classic fantasy tomes, which I find overly detailed and boring- more like Midwinter, The Fallen Blade).
April 30th, 2011, 08:01 PM
It's one thing to be popular. It's another big to be the biggest name in fantasy. Dresden is a decent character albeit a whiny one, the stories are fast paced and often action packed, but not terribly dramatic or deep. The codex alera books aren't even worth mentioning. I don't detect anything extraordinary to make Butcher as popular as he is.
Originally Posted by LaserWraith
April 30th, 2011, 08:34 PM
Ah, you have to be very good to be the biggest name in fantasy. :P (Or very popular and very bad...like Twilight? :P)
Originally Posted by Pvt
Dresden isn't that whiny...just sarcastic. And I like that. I have a small list of funny (and sarcastic) things from the series, and there are many more.
As for drama...some of the funny scenes and violent scenes had drama. Also, I recall one book were Harry revealed to the White Council a traitor. It was very dramatic.
They seem somewhat deep to me. On one level you have Dresden using smarts or force to solve mysteries. He also has some on and off relationships, good friends, uncertain allies, etc. His friends often have small subplots around them.
Tags for this Thread