Genre: urban fantasy
Length: 546 pages
Setting: mostly Chicago and Chichen Itza, about a year after Turn Coat. I read somewhere that Butcher considers the time elapsed between book publishing dates to be the time elapsed in Dresden’s life as well.
Summary: Harry learns he has a daughter, Maggie, when Susan Rodriguez calls to let him know Maggie has been kidnapped by the Red Court. The vampires are planning a major ceremony to cast a blood curse and kill the child’s entire bloodline. Susan comes to Harry for help. Unfortunately, he’s unable to get any assistance from the White Council. Ultimately, he turns to Mab and agrees to be her Winter Knight, if she helps him rescue his child. He and his friends, including Molly, Murphy, Sanya. and Thomas, take on the entire Red Court to save Maggie. Amazingly, they are successful, with lots of surprises along the way.
Final thoughts: I wasn’t as impressed with this book as the others I’ve read. I might need to take a break from Dresden Files books to let my appreciation regrow. It seemed there was a lot more explanatory text than usual. You should really know who Bob is by the 12th book in the series, and how Harry recharges his force rings. I can’t imagine anyone would be picking this book up and thinking, “This would be a good place to start the series.”
Overall, this book seemed like a low point for Harry. The Blue Beetle is crushed, his house is firebombed, Susan dies, and even his leather duster is destroyed. Of course, it no longer matters much since now he’ll be working for Queen Mab. He gambles a lot to save his daughter from the vampires. (Of course, it saves himself as well, but the focus is always on the child.) Harry’s relationship with Thomas seemed to be fixed, though, with no explanation as to the change between the end of Turn Coat and now. My other annoyance had to do with the big battle with the vampires. It seemed like everyone got off too easy. But, the fighting was exciting, and we did see growth in the characters. Everything’s changed in Harry’s life, and it will be interesting to see how things play out in the next book, especially considering the very end of this book.
Title comes from: All the changes going on in Harry’s life in this book. It starts and ends with a bombshell.
Reading challenges fulfilled: book #50 for the year (not looking like I’ll make 100 this year) and #15 in my Finish the Series Challenge
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