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Topic: The new Dresden (Ghost Story), thoughts anyone (spoilers of course)

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Subject: The new Dresden (Ghost Story), thoughts anyone (spoilers of course)
Date Posted: 7/31/2011 4:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2009
Posts: 1,620
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Here are mine FWIW-

Typically Jim Butcher fast ride, fly by the seat of the pants goes Harry. Admittedly, I only just barely called the plot on who 'killed' Harry, but didn't really flesh it out.

I liked it, but am still kinda' frustrated. I guess I am getting impatient with the continuous line of tight rope walking that Harry has to do to deal with 'people' who are controlling him (or trying to). He has barely gotten past the Denarian possession thing, and now here we go again. I was hoping for a more direct move towards the allusions made by the Gatekeeper (correct name??). The cryptic ones that make it look like he is going to move into being something big, and I don't think it had to do with being the White Knight.

I know that J Butcher has 8-10 more to go, so there is plenty of time to get there, but this feels like 1 step forward 2 steps back.

Still, like I said, I liked it (but it wasn't my favorite of the series).

ETA It was fascinating to get a little more of a look into his past, though.

Date Posted: 7/31/2011 7:58 PM ET
Member Since: 11/4/2005
Posts: 1,983
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I liked it as well, but not my favorite of the series ( dead beat win that ).  I am not normally a fan of books where the main character is a whipping boy but it really seems to work in this series. I did not like how it seems like his friends are really paying the price this time, but it does make sense.  I am really curious who the shadow at his feat was whispering despair in his ear.

 

Mike

Date Posted: 8/1/2011 9:18 AM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2009
Posts: 1,620
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Interesting thought.  I didn't really contemplate the shadow as a specific entity, probably because Uriel didn't refer to it in terms calling for it.  Now that you mention it, non-specific 'things' in the series do have a habit of becoming specific later on.

Since I didn't delve into this genre until about 2 years ago, I read the bulk of the series in one shot.  Consequently, most of them blur together in my mind.  I am not sure which one it was, but I liked (best) the one where the council finally has to conceed (at least for the most part) that Harry isn't the evil being that they had concluded.

 

 

Date Posted: 8/2/2011 6:44 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2009
Posts: 826
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I'm kind of proud of myself.  I've had several theories over the last year as to who had shot Harry and why, but my favored one was mostly right.  I'd had Kincaid pegged, as well as the why, I just didn't figure out who'd hired Kincaid until halfway through Ghost Story. (Though I didn't figure out Molly was involved until almost the very end.)

I really think this particular book was almost all character development.  Luckily, I really like character development, especially when it has to do with filling in Harry's mysterious past.

As far as the overall series plot-line, yeah, it's only infinitesimally advanced by this book.  We've figured out that someone/thing has been deliberately pushing into being more aggressive than he would have otherwise been from a very early age.  And who/whatever it is, has to be more powerful than, or at least on good terms with He Who Walks Behind or Outsiders in general.  That's really the only new thing I can think of.

Has it ever been told how Harry's father died?  I remember seeing the ghost of Harry's father showing up in dreams a couple of times, but don't remember how exactly he died.  If Harry's been manipulated from such an early age, it seems likely to me that that same person/thing might have killed the father in order to more easily manipulate harry.

Couldn't the shadow have been one of the Denarii?  They're fallen angels, I believe.  And there's been hints that the Denarii are allied with the Black Council.  I'm not sure if the Denarii are capable of speaking to someone who doesn't have their coin, but if someone has accepted Lasciel's coin, maybe Lasciel could be whispering to Harry?  She definitely has a reason to hold a grudge against him.

I read a ton of these all at once, too.  I went back and re-read a couple before reading Ghost Story, but I think one of these days I'll have to go back and read the rest of them again.  The littlest things become really important years later!

Date Posted: 8/4/2011 8:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2009
Posts: 1,620
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I need to do the re-read as well, but I don't think it is going to happen anytime soon.  Too much required reading with school.

Date Posted: 8/4/2011 11:22 PM ET
Member Since: 8/6/2006
Posts: 1,619
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I just finished about 10 minutes ago.  My son read it first and I wouldn't let him give anything away.  The first thing I did was call him and say "you didn't tell me I was gonna cry!"  It's definitely not my favorite book in the series but... 

Now we have to wait a whole nother year for the next one!

Date Posted: 8/11/2011 9:40 AM ET
Member Since: 11/29/2010
Posts: 56
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I thought it was pretty bad.  Some parts were predictable, other parts were barely readable.   I thought this book could have been so much better,  This was the first Dresden File I was anticipating and waiting on the edge of my seat- I actually had to pick up three times before being able to read past the 6th chapter (I usually finish books in one sitting whether 50 pages or 1000- this is telling).    It could not capture my attention or interest until nearly the end-- that is not a sign of a good book.  I've loved most  Dresden Files but some are disappointing like this and tortuous to read.

 

Then again, I am the only one out there who doesn't think much of  George RR Martin either....

Date Posted: 8/18/2011 11:32 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
Posts: 7,977
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All in all I really liked it. The Dresden Universe is very layered, and very complicated, and Harry's now dipped his toe into another fawcet of it. I think in the end it'll be very important that he's gone through all this. And it was a nice change of pace from all the Fae stuff.

Harry's strengths lie in the fact that he's the friend and guardian of the underdogs, which not only includes those in the physical world, and the fae, but now the dead.

I think in the ultimate end, it'll be a battle of all Good and Evil, and Harry will be the unexpected third wheel in the fight, those who don't want either side to Win. (That it's the struggle between the two that create the machine of existance, and if either should win entrophy would be absolute.) And behind him will be all those who've been the pawns and outcasts of the fight between the two. Those who are small players on their own planes, but now Harry's friends or those who respect him.

So adding this layer is important.

I've had several theories over the last year as to who had shot Harry and why, but my favored one was mostly right.  I'd had Kincaid pegged, as well as the why, I just didn't figure out who'd hired Kincaid until halfway through Ghost Story. (Though I didn't figure out Molly was involved until almost the very end.)

I knew Harry would have himself killed after he saved his daughter. He couldn't let himself become the Monster Mab wants. And I figured Kincaid would have done it. I knew Murphy wouldn't arrange it, so just needed to find out who did while Harry himself was too wounded to arrange it. I didn't suspect Molly so much as Bob.

And by skipping this six months, Harry hasn't had to be Mab's Monster, and it looks to me like Mab is in a bad state. She's going to let Harry do things his way because she wouldn't have spend six months in a cave hiding Harry and keeping his body alive, and obviously hiding, unless the shit had hit the fan and she's been disposed in some way. She needs him, and she needs him to do things His Way, because he's Dresden. He'll get it done or get destroyed trying.

And now we have more confirmation that he's tied into the Island Being, and is probably one of the few Wizards who can handle the power of the lay lines, and has the back up of the Island Guardian, which is what the Gate Keeper hinted at.

It's slow going, but I think Harry is going to have to go through a lot more trials to become what he needs to be to kick start the universe back into action when the two sides become too powerful. He's what, about 40 now? Seriously too young for a Wizard so powerful. He's still a child in the Wizard world, which is why he lacks control of his anger issues, acts impulsive and lacks finesse. He's still to damn young.

Has it ever been told how Harry's father died?  I remember seeing the ghost of Harry's father showing up in dreams a couple of times, but don't remember how exactly he died.

I had to look it up on Wiki... Malcom Dresden ....He is Harry Dresden's father. He died of an apparent aneurysm leaving Harry orphaned at the age of 6.

I knew he was dead, of apparent "Natural Causes" but couldn't remember how. (Afraid I was getting it mixed up with the TV Universe.)

DH has heard the first couple of Audio Books, but doesn't read print for fun. So when I read one I tell him what's going on in the Dresden Universe. We've come to believe that Harry is and isn't a New Soul, but someone resurrected for the End of Times by those who don't want to see either side win. He's got too much going on to be a New Soul, and because the Swords came to him, we think that Harry is going to be the re-incarnation of the Original Merlin.

Called back by his mother and someone else to be reborn and thrown back into the mix to be the Third Wheel. But he's not just Merlin, he's the New Merlin Plus.

I just hope we get the end on time so we can see!