As cool as winter, as hot as summer[Harry Dresden]-Peace Talks out in July!

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  • RingoRingo HE KEEPS REPEATING THE LINE I'M GONNA CRY BLEASE LET HIM LIVE YOU MADE ME WATCH SO MUCH KISSING IN THIS FILM LET INIGO LIVERegistered User regular
    Yeah, I only read all the microfictions yesterday and frowned real hard at some of them

    Sterica wrote: »
    I know my last visit to my grandpa on his deathbed was to find out how the whole Nazi werewolf thing turned out.
    Edcrab's Exigency RPG
  • ArtereisArtereis Registered User regular
    Nitsua wrote: »
    Here’s something that’s been on my mind since finishing the book:
    Mab is made out to be incredibly intelligent and to be planning schemes within schemes and does not fuck around or make stupid mistakes. She also is shown as a being of incredible power, akin to the force of nature itself. Seeing as how Dresden was able to see how dramatically more powerful Mab and Titania were over him many books back and that Mab is no idiot and should be able to tell when she is being outclassed and not just rush straight forward when someone is obviously baiting her into attacking (as she keeps getting on Harry for doing) why is she doing it here? Either there is some terrible writing going on in this book, or there is something we’re missing. We do know that the Mothers are many orders of magnitude stronger than Mab in the same fashion that she is vastly stronger than Molly... so she has experienced beings stronger than her and know they exist. So why did she go barreling forward to attack someone Titan class? Something just isn’t adding up for me.

    Re: Mab
    Mab admitted at some point previously that she was mortal in the past. She's had a long time to tamp that down, but she's still basically a child to Etniu, and the Titan knew exactly which buttons to push. That was one part that made sense to me.

    RingoElvenshaeZibblsnrt
  • PailryderPailryder Registered User regular
    Artereis wrote: »
    Nitsua wrote: »
    Here’s something that’s been on my mind since finishing the book:
    Mab is made out to be incredibly intelligent and to be planning schemes within schemes and does not fuck around or make stupid mistakes. She also is shown as a being of incredible power, akin to the force of nature itself. Seeing as how Dresden was able to see how dramatically more powerful Mab and Titania were over him many books back and that Mab is no idiot and should be able to tell when she is being outclassed and not just rush straight forward when someone is obviously baiting her into attacking (as she keeps getting on Harry for doing) why is she doing it here? Either there is some terrible writing going on in this book, or there is something we’re missing. We do know that the Mothers are many orders of magnitude stronger than Mab in the same fashion that she is vastly stronger than Molly... so she has experienced beings stronger than her and know they exist. So why did she go barreling forward to attack someone Titan class? Something just isn’t adding up for me.

    Re: Mab
    Mab admitted at some point previously that she was mortal in the past. She's had a long time to tamp that down, but she's still basically a child to Etniu, and the Titan knew exactly which buttons to push. That was one part that made sense to me.

    was it implied
    that she was morgana from king arthur's court? there seemed to be some inference maybe? Also if you haven't yet, check out the wiki pages on fomor and etniu.
    i really think there is likely another big bad pulling the strings but the book still felt mostly pointless.
    I believe it's the chekov gun right? Jimset up Harry being kicked out, set up Thomas as a murderer/fall guy, set up peace talks, set up fomor up to things and there was no pay off to any of those.

    RingoKetBraHeffling
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    edited July 17
    I'm in chapter 16 right now, and I have an objection to...I guess the pacing?
    It seems like Butcher is pushing Harry into stupid over-aggression as a way to fix his pacing. Which, don't get me wrong, "stupid" and "aggressive" are pretty characteristic for Harry, but...not like this. The way he just pushes hard against both Thomas and McCoy, constantly for seemingly little reason and without even trying to cooperate with anybody, seems very convenient for Butcher as the author. Like he knew where he needed to get to, and pushed Harry's characterization to the breaking point to get there as quickly as possible.

    ...which still turned out to leave us doing situational set-up at nearly the halfway point of the book. I think I agree with whoever it was earlier that said Butcher's editors failed him on this one.

    This criticism also applies to Thomas and McCoy's behavior, I think. Everybody just seems to be roid-raging all the time in this book.

    WACriminal on
    Ringo
  • RT800RT800 Registered User regular
    So, I failed to do my re-read before jumping into this newest book.

    Question:
    How exactly did Thomas get Justine pregnant? I thought touching her was supposed to burn the shit out of him.

  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    Also yeah I'm having a lot of, "Who is this person? What is this event they're talking about? And how important is the answer to that question? It feels like it's gonna be pretty important!" moments. Really disappointed, Butcher's been much better in previous books about not requiring you to have read the short story collections.

  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    RT800 wrote: »
    So, I failed to do my re-read before jumping into this newest book.

    Question:
    How exactly did Thomas get Justine pregnant? I thought touching her was supposed to burn the shit out of him.
    Justine brought a friend over a few books back when Thomas was being super mopey and shiz, and they had some crazy three-way that... something something something made it so that he loves her, but he's not in love with her... I guess. Or maybe there's just something where hot monkey sex with other people breaks the condition regardless of how much love there is. I think that might have been the case. Thematically the concept is nice because it ties in with the whole thing where for all their power all the vampires are missing at least some core element of humanity, but the specific mechanics are a bit dubious.
    Pailryder wrote: »
    Artereis wrote: »
    Nitsua wrote: »
    Here’s something that’s been on my mind since finishing the book:
    Mab is made out to be incredibly intelligent and to be planning schemes within schemes and does not fuck around or make stupid mistakes. She also is shown as a being of incredible power, akin to the force of nature itself. Seeing as how Dresden was able to see how dramatically more powerful Mab and Titania were over him many books back and that Mab is no idiot and should be able to tell when she is being outclassed and not just rush straight forward when someone is obviously baiting her into attacking (as she keeps getting on Harry for doing) why is she doing it here? Either there is some terrible writing going on in this book, or there is something we’re missing. We do know that the Mothers are many orders of magnitude stronger than Mab in the same fashion that she is vastly stronger than Molly... so she has experienced beings stronger than her and know they exist. So why did she go barreling forward to attack someone Titan class? Something just isn’t adding up for me.

    Re: Mab
    Mab admitted at some point previously that she was mortal in the past. She's had a long time to tamp that down, but she's still basically a child to Etniu, and the Titan knew exactly which buttons to push. That was one part that made sense to me.

    was it implied
    that she was morgana from king arthur's court? there seemed to be some inference maybe? Also if you haven't yet, check out the wiki pages on fomor and etniu.
    i really think there is likely another big bad pulling the strings but the book still felt mostly pointless.
    I believe it's the chekov gun right? Jimset up Harry being kicked out, set up Thomas as a murderer/fall guy, set up peace talks, set up fomor up to things and there was no pay off to any of those.
    Yeah, there was something about how she was around when OG Merlin was a thing, which had me thinking Morgan le Fay. Which given the way things seem to be tying together, might make his whole bumping uglies with Mab a little wierd.
    WACriminal wrote: »
    I'm in chapter 16 right now, and I have an objection to...I guess the pacing?
    It seems like Butcher is pushing Harry into stupid over-aggression as a way to fix his pacing. Which, don't get me wrong, "stupid" and "aggressive" are pretty characteristic for Harry, but...not like this. The way he just pushes hard against both Thomas and McCoy, constantly for seemingly little reason and without even trying to cooperate with anybody, seems very convenient for Butcher as the author. Like he knew where he needed to get to, and pushed Harry's characterization to the breaking point to get there as quickly as possible.

    ...which still turned out to leave us doing situational set-up at nearly the halfway point of the book. I think I agree with whoever it was earlier that said Butcher's editors failed him on this one.

    This criticism also applies to Thomas and McCoy's behavior, I think. Everybody just seems to be roid-raging all the time in this book.
    McCoy's behavior is really gnawing at me. Not being big fans of vampires is all well and good (they are predators after all, I believe Harry mentions that like a few hundred times in the book), but he goes murder crazy about things, and that really makes no sense. Thomas' action triggers a crisis between the White Court and the Svartalf, the White Council either shouldn't care, or should be happy that Lara is pulling shenanigans since actual conflict with the Svartalf would likely turn out poorly for the vamps. Now McCoy's obviously not representing the Council's position with his actions, they're 110% personal, but what he's doing is basically the same as what Harry did back in Grave Peril, a member of the (Senior) White Council hitting members of an accord nation without any real justification. And in this case, the leadership. It seems bonkers because there just hasn't been enough buildup of the tension between McCoy and the White Court. Not enough to remotely justify his actions at least. It's like getting dumped by your POC girlfriend, and your buddy, who might have been a little standoffish with her, decides that this is the right time to invite you to a Klan rally. Just baffling.

    Shut up, Mr. Burton! You were not brought upon this world to get it!
    PailryderRingoWACriminalkime
  • Moridin889Moridin889 Registered User regular
    RT800 wrote: »
    So, I failed to do my re-read before jumping into this newest book.

    Question:
    How exactly did Thomas get Justine pregnant? I thought touching her was supposed to burn the shit out of him.
    White court can't touch people in true love with another. But like other vampires in the series, it's a faith/faithful thing. If he sexes up someone else right beforehand or she does, the protection falls away. It's replaced when they consummate the deed again. It's mentioned in a previous book that they'll seduce people in love with other methods besides just vamping out and have their thralls get first swing to strip the protections away.

    Elvenshae
  • see317see317 Registered User regular
    Question about Sanya
    Did he always talk in such a stereotypical 80's movie Russian manner? His speech mannerisms never seemed to jump out at me too much in the previous books when he showed up, but here everything he says reads like Ivan Drago.

    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
    DevoutlyApathetic
  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    see317 wrote: »
    Question about Sanya
    Did he always talk in such a stereotypical 80's movie Russian manner? His speech mannerisms never seemed to jump out at me too much in the previous books when he showed up, but here everything he says reads like Ivan Drago.
    I assumed some of that was him playing around a bit. Not sure that was the intention though.

  • NitsuaNitsua Gloucester, VARegistered User regular
    edited July 17
    see317 wrote: »
    Question about Sanya
    Did he always talk in such a stereotypical 80's movie Russian manner? His speech mannerisms never seemed to jump out at me too much in the previous books when he showed up, but here everything he says reads like Ivan Drago.
    I assumed some of that was him playing around a bit. Not sure that was the intention though.
    He’s always talked with a slightly broken accent. Every time I do a Re-read I see it. It’s hard to catch most times because it’s very slight. This one may seem a bit more obvious, but it’s not really much different than previous books.

    Here’s some of his dialog from Changes, for example: “ “Da. This is going very well already."

    Thomas barked out a laugh. "There are seven of us against the Red King and his thirteen most powerful nobles, and it's going well?"

    Mouse sneezed.

    "Eight," Thomas corrected himself. He rolled his eyes and said, "And the psycho death faerie makes it nine."

    "It is like movie," Sanya said, nodding. "Dibs on Legolas." “

    And there is more than that in other books. Just the first one I saw on a quote site.

    Nitsua on
    Elvenshae
  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    edited July 18
    current book stuff
    Re: Sanya's voice, he also just seems a bit talkier this time than in previous books in general, where he'd mainly contribute Action Quips, so it might be more noticable.

    I do think Butcher just straight up ramped it up this time though.

    I quite like that Nicodemus is not only ruined, but is so ruined the various powers have no clue where he even is at this point.

    Overall I'm getting a serious "author getting his sea legs back after being beached for way too long" vibe. I'm assuming there's some substantial payoffs in the next book, but this one felt wobbly.


    future book stuff
    I'm not sure which Carpenter Conversation I'm looking forward to more: Michael's reaction to Harry carrying multiple artifacts from the Crucifixion to war, or Charity's reaction when she finally finds out what Harry and Molly have not been telling the family for the last several years.

    I wonder if whatever book the latter happens in will be followed by Ghost Redux...

    Zibblsnrt on
    ShadowhopeMancingtomElvenshaekime
  • PolaritiePolaritie Sleepy Registered User regular
    Definitely agree with some of the criticism here - the book split and such shows, and it does feel a bit like Butcher's off his game. Will have to wait and see how the next book turns out.

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  • Moridin889Moridin889 Registered User regular
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    current book stuff


    future book stuff
    I'm not sure which Carpenter Conversation I'm looking forward to more: Michael's reaction to Harry carrying multiple artifacts from the Crucifixion to war, or Charity's reaction when she finally finds out what Harry and Molly have not been telling the family for the last several years.

    I wonder if whatever book the latter happens in will be followed by Ghost Redux...

    Carpenter conversations
    The best part is, Harry accidentally insinuated to Michael he was sleeping with Molly. Now they think Molly is embarassed about that and it's why she isn't coming around so they won't have to talk about it.

    Zibblsnrt
  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    Carpentry
    Idly I'm enjoying the fact that since he was, ah, sidelined, one of Michael's main roles in most of the post-shooting stories is for Harry to show up at his place, physically or emotionally beat to crap, so he can call him an idiot in precisely the right way to put him back on his game. (That's just me being a sucker for Actual Paladin characters, though.)

    Charity's totally going to call him an idiot and kill him three times when the Molly situation comes to light, though.

    MancingtomPolaritieMazzyxJayrichoElvenshaeRingoTofystedethkime
  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    Finished the book.

    Spoiler thoughts.
    It was good to have new Dresden after so long. It did feel like it cut itself short as I do think he wrote a huge novel and had to split it. But I am fine with that, its not a long wait.

    On the story it makes sense for the most part. They have been building up the Formor as the pawns of Nemesis and the Outsiders. And having a Titan makes sense after they had already taken the ladies at one point. I want to see how the fight is handled. The powers of Summer, a small amount of Winter, the Svartelves, White Court, White Council, Odin, and a god damn fucking dragon! Good way to start the end of the world I would say.

    What is getting me is the Starborne teasing and the conjuritist teasing. I want to know what the fuck these are.

    As for McCoy I think it makes sense. Something else is going on but also let us remember he is the Blackstaff. The White Council wizard allowed to blow the shit out of people. And magic like that has blow back on the user. Even if it is for good. McCoy ain't a clean soul and has a couple hundred years of anger to built up on top of that.

    But something is going on. Something more than just Harry being set up. Something that McCoy feels Harry's dumb ass is fucking up.

    Though I am curious where Titania is right now. There are a lot of big players that haven't all popped their head up yet.

    Also outsiders going after McCoy makes me think there was something else tied to that attack.

    I need to see how this case file ends, because it sure at done.

    03x29di.png
    Elvenshae
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    Currently listening to chapter 20 and oh my GOD Butcher just keeps intentionally fucking with people who have book PTSD from
    the Red Wedding

    He just can't help himself.

    kime
  • GiantGeek2020GiantGeek2020 Registered User regular
    daveNYC wrote: »
    RT800 wrote: »
    So, I failed to do my re-read before jumping into this newest book.

    Question:
    How exactly did Thomas get Justine pregnant? I thought touching her was supposed to burn the shit out of him.
    Justine brought a friend over a few books back when Thomas was being super mopey and shiz, and they had some crazy three-way that... something something something made it so that he loves her, but he's not in love with her... I guess. Or maybe there's just something where hot monkey sex with other people breaks the condition regardless of how much love there is. I think that might have been the case. Thematically the concept is nice because it ties in with the whole thing where for all their power all the vampires are missing at least some core element of humanity, but the specific mechanics are a bit dubious.
    Pailryder wrote: »
    Artereis wrote: »
    Nitsua wrote: »
    Here’s something that’s been on my mind since finishing the book:
    Mab is made out to be incredibly intelligent and to be planning schemes within schemes and does not fuck around or make stupid mistakes. She also is shown as a being of incredible power, akin to the force of nature itself. Seeing as how Dresden was able to see how dramatically more powerful Mab and Titania were over him many books back and that Mab is no idiot and should be able to tell when she is being outclassed and not just rush straight forward when someone is obviously baiting her into attacking (as she keeps getting on Harry for doing) why is she doing it here? Either there is some terrible writing going on in this book, or there is something we’re missing. We do know that the Mothers are many orders of magnitude stronger than Mab in the same fashion that she is vastly stronger than Molly... so she has experienced beings stronger than her and know they exist. So why did she go barreling forward to attack someone Titan class? Something just isn’t adding up for me.

    Re: Mab
    Mab admitted at some point previously that she was mortal in the past. She's had a long time to tamp that down, but she's still basically a child to Etniu, and the Titan knew exactly which buttons to push. That was one part that made sense to me.

    was it implied
    that she was morgana from king arthur's court? there seemed to be some inference maybe? Also if you haven't yet, check out the wiki pages on fomor and etniu.
    i really think there is likely another big bad pulling the strings but the book still felt mostly pointless.
    I believe it's the chekov gun right? Jimset up Harry being kicked out, set up Thomas as a murderer/fall guy, set up peace talks, set up fomor up to things and there was no pay off to any of those.
    Yeah, there was something about how she was around when OG Merlin was a thing, which had me thinking Morgan le Fay. Which given the way things seem to be tying together, might make his whole bumping uglies with Mab a little wierd.
    WACriminal wrote: »
    I'm in chapter 16 right now, and I have an objection to...I guess the pacing?
    It seems like Butcher is pushing Harry into stupid over-aggression as a way to fix his pacing. Which, don't get me wrong, "stupid" and "aggressive" are pretty characteristic for Harry, but...not like this. The way he just pushes hard against both Thomas and McCoy, constantly for seemingly little reason and without even trying to cooperate with anybody, seems very convenient for Butcher as the author. Like he knew where he needed to get to, and pushed Harry's characterization to the breaking point to get there as quickly as possible.

    ...which still turned out to leave us doing situational set-up at nearly the halfway point of the book. I think I agree with whoever it was earlier that said Butcher's editors failed him on this one.

    This criticism also applies to Thomas and McCoy's behavior, I think. Everybody just seems to be roid-raging all the time in this book.
    McCoy's behavior is really gnawing at me. Not being big fans of vampires is all well and good (they are predators after all, I believe Harry mentions that like a few hundred times in the book), but he goes murder crazy about things, and that really makes no sense. Thomas' action triggers a crisis between the White Court and the Svartalf, the White Council either shouldn't care, or should be happy that Lara is pulling shenanigans since actual conflict with the Svartalf would likely turn out poorly for the vamps. Now McCoy's obviously not representing the Council's position with his actions, they're 110% personal, but what he's doing is basically the same as what Harry did back in Grave Peril, a member of the (Senior) White Council hitting members of an accord nation without any real justification. And in this case, the leadership. It seems bonkers because there just hasn't been enough buildup of the tension between McCoy and the White Court. Not enough to remotely justify his actions at least. It's like getting dumped by your POC girlfriend, and your buddy, who might have been a little standoffish with her, decides that this is the right time to invite you to a Klan rally. Just baffling.

    I'd disagree with that characterization.
    In regards to McCoy hating White Court vampires. They are predators. And IIRC they are killers, as much as the Red Court. Their first sexual experience has to be a feeding for them to be a vampire and IIRC it tends to be/is fatal. And that doesn't even count house Malvora/Skaven. Those houses are just sick fucks. So its less like being dumped by your POC girlfriend and more like being dumped by your sociopathic girlfriend who has a string of ex-husbands who went missing under "mysterious circumstances." And whose family has a record 10 times worse than her record. And your friend is urging you to provide testimony to the police. Which considering the police in America today could be the same as inviting you to a Klan rally, but I digress.


    Also I have a question, does McCoy know that Thomas is Harry's brother in this book?

    Because other than that, all he knows about the White Court is that they killed Harry's Mum/Aka Margaret Dresden/aka/Margaret LeFay/ aka
    Maggie McCoy. Remember the White King killed Harry's Mum with an entropy curse. If Harry figures it out, McCoy probably figured it out. So he knows they killed his little girl. And that he couldn't do anything to save her.So yeah. He's got motive. He's got motive that he's probably been sitting on for a long damn time and he finally has an opportunity and means to get payback.

    Biscuits 3:16 "food Jesus is dead and you killed him"
  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    Also I have a question ...

    Spoilery answer to said question
    He's told that in this book and responds by immediately trying to violate the First Law in a non-Blackstaff context.

    kime
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    Just finished Chapter 32.
    1. I feel like the fight with McCoy kinda confirms my suspicion that Butcher started with his endpoint in mind ("I need a wizard duel between Dresden and McCoy") and then just cranked everyone's anger and irrationality up until they were dumb enough to get there. It feels like he made the entire cast of characters carry The Idiot Ball at once, this time around -- which is disappointing as hell, especially coming from Butcher, who's always been really good about carefully orienting the various factions in each book to behave as rational actors with competing and coherent goals.

    2. Kinda wish I hadn't read the blurb for the next book prior to reading this. Took a little wind out of the sails during the Titan's reveal.

    3. Still got a few chapters to go, but part of me feels like (barring some huge reveal in the final chapters) this story would have been better without the subplot to rescue Thomas, and some sort of complex court intrigue happening at the talks instead. Would have been way more interesting to go with a political thriller rather than a heist adventure structure, especially considering you're coming off the excellent heist that was Skin Game, and nothing in this book's smash-and-grab came close to even the lowest points of that one IMO.

    RingoShadowhopePolaritieRaiden333Tofystedethkime
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    OK yeah just finished the book.
    1. Justine is either the traitor, or Butcher is using her as misdirection. I don't see any other way the writing makes sense. The way I figure it, Thomas touched her and didn't get burned in a situation where he knew he should have, and he pieced that realization together with some other piece of information we probably don't have yet, and THAT'S what led to his invasion of the Svartalves HQ. There's a reason Butcher reminded us of the burn mechanic in this book. He thought we wouldn't notice if he wrote enough redundant paragraphs about Harry's libido, but we did.

    2. Others have mentioned the possibility that Harry is a time travel baby. I do think that's the case, and I think Demonreach was used to hold him in stasis for some time. He does seem to have an even more finnicky relationship with technology than other wizards around his age, and McCoy seems surprised that he's dealing with conjuritis "at your age", so there's a lot of elements there indicating that something is screwy with Dresden's relationship to time. This also makes me wonder whether Dresden is some other historical figure we've heard named. Merlin? Kemmler, with a memory wipe? I need to re-read Dead Beat.

    3. The repeated references to polyamory and threesomes (Butters's situation + the Vaklyrie repeatedly inviting Murphy and Dresden + ...I feel like there was another instance that I can't remember right now) made me wonder if there's some hint there that will help bridge Harry's eureka moment in the next book. Probably something related to Justine. Or maybe it's just, uh, something on Butcher's mind lately.

    4. God I love Grey and River Shoulders. I want a spin-off buddy series with those two dorks just hanging out. He's an ancient Grendelken with a keen understanding of human courtesy and culture, he's a shapeshifting mercenary with morals even more flexible than his corporeal body. Together, they fight crime?

    5. I hold to my theory that someone is, will be, and/or has been time traveling in connection with these events specifically. Harry's assertion that, "I'll be back in time" and then Murphy's mocking repetition of it seems like the kind of thing that Butcher would feel clever writing under those circumstances.

    PailryderElvenshaekimeHeffling
  • RT800RT800 Registered User regular
    edited July 19
    I'm thinkin'
    the conjuritis definitely has to have some larger significance that wasn't revealed in this book, since otherwise it seems entirely superfluous.

    RT800 on
    destroyah87jdarksunPolaritieMoridin889ElvenshaekimeHeffling
  • PolaritiePolaritie Sleepy Registered User regular
    WACriminal wrote: »
    Just finished Chapter 32.
    1. I feel like the fight with McCoy kinda confirms my suspicion that Butcher started with his endpoint in mind ("I need a wizard duel between Dresden and McCoy") and then just cranked everyone's anger and irrationality up until they were dumb enough to get there. It feels like he made the entire cast of characters carry The Idiot Ball at once, this time around -- which is disappointing as hell, especially coming from Butcher, who's always been really good about carefully orienting the various factions in each book to behave as rational actors with competing and coherent goals.

    2. Kinda wish I hadn't read the blurb for the next book prior to reading this. Took a little wind out of the sails during the Titan's reveal.

    3. Still got a few chapters to go, but part of me feels like (barring some huge reveal in the final chapters) this story would have been better without the subplot to rescue Thomas, and some sort of complex court intrigue happening at the talks instead. Would have been way more interesting to go with a political thriller rather than a heist adventure structure, especially considering you're coming off the excellent heist that was Skin Game, and nothing in this book's smash-and-grab came close to even the lowest points of that one IMO.

    Full book:
    1 - Yeah, unless we get a reveal next book about something it's odd. Harry escalating things a bit is in character, especially since he's going to be defensive of Thomas. But McCoy's too old for that shit I'd think... his complete snapping at the end does make me wonder.

    3 - Yes, having a heist in this book was probably a poor choice. I think it really needed to come down to Harry figuring out what was going on late in the book and then working with Lara to get proof for a diplomatic solution... which then all goes south when the Titan shows up but the Thomas issue gets shelved.

    That said, with the state Thomas is in I'm calling him getting run through with Fidelachius next book, killing his Hunger. The foreshadowing of it being able to cut evil but not flesh works too well to resolve that.

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  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    Polaritie wrote: »
    WACriminal wrote: »
    Just finished Chapter 32.
    1. I feel like the fight with McCoy kinda confirms my suspicion that Butcher started with his endpoint in mind ("I need a wizard duel between Dresden and McCoy") and then just cranked everyone's anger and irrationality up until they were dumb enough to get there. It feels like he made the entire cast of characters carry The Idiot Ball at once, this time around -- which is disappointing as hell, especially coming from Butcher, who's always been really good about carefully orienting the various factions in each book to behave as rational actors with competing and coherent goals.

    2. Kinda wish I hadn't read the blurb for the next book prior to reading this. Took a little wind out of the sails during the Titan's reveal.

    3. Still got a few chapters to go, but part of me feels like (barring some huge reveal in the final chapters) this story would have been better without the subplot to rescue Thomas, and some sort of complex court intrigue happening at the talks instead. Would have been way more interesting to go with a political thriller rather than a heist adventure structure, especially considering you're coming off the excellent heist that was Skin Game, and nothing in this book's smash-and-grab came close to even the lowest points of that one IMO.

    Full book:
    1 - Yeah, unless we get a reveal next book about something it's odd. Harry escalating things a bit is in character, especially since he's going to be defensive of Thomas. But McCoy's too old for that shit I'd think... his complete snapping at the end does make me wonder.

    3 - Yes, having a heist in this book was probably a poor choice. I think it really needed to come down to Harry figuring out what was going on late in the book and then working with Lara to get proof for a diplomatic solution... which then all goes south when the Titan shows up but the Thomas issue gets shelved.

    That said, with the state Thomas is in I'm calling him getting run through with Fidelachius next book, killing his Hunger. The foreshadowing of it being able to cut evil but not flesh works too well to resolve that.

    Full book:
    1 - Something something Nemesis? Probably not given his other actions in the book.

    3 - Come up with a shitty diplomatic solution, something that would drag others into the war or something negative and then Titan shows up and Harry/Lara realize they can just take Thomas in the chaos would have been perfect.

    PolaritieRingo
  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    telegraphy
    On the one hand, Justine being the traitor feels telegraphed. On the other hand, it feels too telegraphed, and things turning out that way feels more like a George Martin Asshole Writer Maneuver than a Jim Butcher Asshole Writer Maneuver. It feels a bit too much in terms of how he's handled the characters so far.

    Then again, Darth McCoy feels a bit much too. Sooner or later it's going to dawn on Harry that Ebenezar tried to kill not only Thomas, but Murphy.

    sordz
    I'm trying to figure out if I'd rather see Thomas exorcised by Fidelacchius or - assuming Justine isn't the traitor - recruited by Amoracchius.

    black hats
    The Black Council - Ethniu's gang or not?

  • PolaritiePolaritie Sleepy Registered User regular
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    telegraphy
    On the one hand, Justine being the traitor feels telegraphed. On the other hand, it feels too telegraphed, and things turning out that way feels more like a George Martin Asshole Writer Maneuver than a Jim Butcher Asshole Writer Maneuver. It feels a bit too much in terms of how he's handled the characters so far.

    Then again, Darth McCoy feels a bit much too. Sooner or later it's going to dawn on Harry that Ebenezar tried to kill not only Thomas, but Murphy.

    sordz
    I'm trying to figure out if I'd rather see Thomas exorcised by Fidelacchius or - assuming Justine isn't the traitor - recruited by Amoracchius.

    black hats
    The Black Council - Ethniu's gang or not?

    Telegraphing things
    The biggest problem with Justine being the traitor really is that it would be unearned. It's not satisfying from a narrative perspective for the perpetual damsel in distress to get Nemesis'd or something. She doesn't show up often in the books, having her just "and suddenly she's possessed and a villain" is just cruel from the author... oh but wait. We already know Nemesis can be fixed, presumably. That's what was going on when Mab stuck Lea into the font of Winter (or at least, it can be inferred, as that was before Nemesis was actually named I think). If it is Justine I predict she gets stabbed with a lightsaber and is all better afterwards.

    I have to wonder though - McCoy's the one who's going on about being stabbed in the back by someone you trust. He's also raving about not trusting vampires, etc. though. It would be good misdirection if he was just wrong about everything. Is it possible there's a limit on the whole Blackstaff thing and he's reached it?

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  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    edited July 19
    - . .-.. . --. .-. .- .--. .... -.--
    Nemesis getting Justine is something I could deal with, at least if it's reversible. Her being a legitimate baddie, especially if she's knowingly getting Thomas of all people killed? Yeahno, that's not only way too out of character, there's zero setup for it as well. It'd be like Ramirez being Black Council or Detective Rudolph being polite.

    Cranky hillbilly mages
    I wonder if Something Happened to him sometime while he's been off-page for the last couple books. Not something nemesissy, I mean, just in general, because something - hopefully something other than Butcher getting rusty, that is - dialed him up to eleven for this one.

    I do hope that gets resolved sooner rather than later though - another extended bout of "Harry spends several books being emoishly estranged" might be a bit much.

    Zibblsnrt on
    Pailryderkime
  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    The more I think about this book today, the more I just get...kinda depressed about it. It's been 6 years since Skin Game, and instead of feeling stoked that I have new Dresden to speculate about, I just find myself hoping the next one's better. It needed an editor so badly. There's precious little narrative there in the first place, and yet Butcher wastes paragraphs and paragraphs going over the same things we already know repeatedly, sometimes even within the same chapter. He returns to the same descriptions of the same pointless things over and over again. For instance, how many times do we need
    Harry to explain to us that Lara makes him feel like a caveman? How many times do we need him to vaguely, uncomfortably imply thoughts of sexual aggression or violence? How many times do we need him casually ogling Justine or Hope Carpenter or some other random woman for us? How many times do we need him to explain that the Winter Mantle juices him up? We get it. Hell, I'm almost certain he exactly described something about Lara as "made me want to beat my chest and howl" at least twice without variance, which is precisely the kind of thing an editor is supposed to see, grab you by the collar, and rub your nose in while whispering, no.

    It'd be one thing if he hit a few of these notes once in the first half to remind us of key points since, after all, it has been 6 years. But the way he handled it all was frankly baffling to me.

    I predict that Peace Talks and Battle Ground would have made an excellent single book, if a bit long for Butcher's usual standards, by trimming out the dumb stuff and simply treating it as a huge event entry in the series, a la Changes. But then, it feels like he made the decision to split the story in two, and had to do the equivalent of when a college student makes their paper longer by adding repetitive sentences and increasing the font size.

    I was entertained. But I expect more from this series, and I didn't get it this time.

    RingoKetBraTofystedethkime
  • Ninja Snarl PNinja Snarl P My helmet is my burden. Ninja Snarl: Gone, but not forgotten.Registered User regular
    Haven't read the book yet, but 6 years is a fairly long gap so it wouldn't surprise me if this book is a lot of him getting back into "shape" for writing Dresden. Fitting everything to a particular style and internal consistency takes a lot of work, but ultimately goes off a lot better when you don't have to actually think about this things much and can just run with the story because you're in the zone.

    Elvenshae
  • NitsuaNitsua Gloucester, VARegistered User regular
    As for Thomas and Justine
    You all seem to forget that at the end of Ghost Story, Thomas and Justine were able to get it on because Justine brought a third party into things. It’s the loop hole on the love causes pain thing for White Vampires - if the person has sexual relations with anyone else, even if they are still in love with the original person and they are loved back, the protection vanishes. While Justine being the reason Thomas attacks the svartalves, you’ll need to have a better reason than just Butcher is making a point about a Thomas not being burned. this was resolved a number of books back. Notice Harry’s lack of surprise that Thomas could make love to Justine in order to create a baby with her - he just asked if he was sure.

  • WACriminalWACriminal Dying Is Easy, Young Man Living Is HarderRegistered User regular
    Nitsua wrote: »
    As for Thomas and Justine
    You all seem to forget that at the end of Ghost Story, Thomas and Justine were able to get it on because Justine brought a third party into things. It’s the loop hole on the love causes pain thing for White Vampires - if the person has sexual relations with anyone else, even if they are still in love with the original person and they are loved back, the protection vanishes. While Justine being the reason Thomas attacks the svartalves, you’ll need to have a better reason than just Butcher is making a point about a Thomas not being burned. this was resolved a number of books back. Notice Harry’s lack of surprise that Thomas could make love to Justine in order to create a baby with her - he just asked if he was sure.

    No I get that, but I think the hypothetical in my head is either
    1. It's a situation where she has slept with someone else outside the threesome habits they've established, without his knowledge, which could believably be something that upsets him/tips him off that something shady is going on, or

    2. Thomas knows that he's the last one she slept with, and he still doesn't get burned, which means that Justine doesn't love him anymore. The likely explanation for this is, "Justine got Nemesis'd", but Thomas could easily invent some other explanation out of paranoid whole cloth under those circumstances. Does Thomas even know about Nemesis, as such? I can't remember.

    I think explanation #2 is the more likely order of events if my original speculation is right.

  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    telegraphy
    On the one hand, Justine being the traitor feels telegraphed. On the other hand, it feels too telegraphed, and things turning out that way feels more like a George Martin Asshole Writer Maneuver than a Jim Butcher Asshole Writer Maneuver. It feels a bit too much in terms of how he's handled the characters so far.

    Then again, Darth McCoy feels a bit much too. Sooner or later it's going to dawn on Harry that Ebenezar tried to kill not only Thomas, but Murphy.

    sordz
    I'm trying to figure out if I'd rather see Thomas exorcised by Fidelacchius or - assuming Justine isn't the traitor - recruited by Amoracchius.

    black hats
    The Black Council - Ethniu's gang or not?

    black hats
    Possible, but either the timing is a little weird or they've been playing a real long game. The Fomor only started to become major players again because the Red Court got nuked from orbit and the Fomor were able to move into the power vacuum. The Black Council has been making moves well prior to the Red Court going down in Changes, so while they might be one and the same it'd take a bit of work to sort out the how/why/when of some of the stuff.

    One of the obvious weak points of the book was how little we found out about Ethniu. Sure, you don't want to spill everything in the opening monologue, but you have someone who knew Mab from the before time and can kick her through a couple walls without breaking a sweat. Add in the fact that I know nearly nothing about the chunk of Irish mythology that she comes from, and I could have done with a few more pages of interaction with her.

    I'm also pretty iffy that the Fomor can just murderize all the waitstaff and sort things out by passing around some weregild. Sure they're not signatories, but they are employed by one who is and I would think that something between the guest rights and the whole situation being under something like a flag of truce for the negotiations there'd be something or other that would make all the mass shooting something a bit more weighty than a faux pas.

    Shut up, Mr. Burton! You were not brought upon this world to get it!
  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    daveNYC wrote: »
    black hats
    I'm also pretty iffy that the Fomor can just murderize all the waitstaff and sort things out by passing around some weregild. Sure they're not signatories, but they are employed by one who is and I would think that something between the guest rights and the whole situation being under something like a flag of truce for the negotiations there'd be something or other that would make all the mass shooting something a bit more weighty than a faux pas.

    Not exactly surprising that Mab isn't quite up on the 1099 hustle and wrote laws that were outdated by modern employment practices.

  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    I just recently fell down the Dresden hole thanks to my library having the 1-6 collection for loan via Kindle.

    They do not, however, have the 7-12 collection available (at least via Libby). Does anyone happen to have it on Kindle that they can lend me? You can shoot me a PM if you want.

    In the meantime I'm reading a book about mech zombies and it's decent so far.

  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    I remember really liking Dresden files, and i think the ones i have read are still mostly good.
    But somehow, i am not stoked about this one, and from the spoilers, i am in no hurry to read it.
    Did i grow up? Did the series change in quality? Apart from getting better after first few i mean. Or am i just tired with the same predictable jokes?

    Still eager for a new cinder spires novel though, so it can't be just about Butcher's skill as a writer.

  • MancingtomMancingtom Registered User regular
    Maybe you're just not in the mood for it right now?

    Like you said, it's not about Butcher the writer, and Dresden is a very particular flavor.

    ElvenshaeRingo
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    Can't say the last couple books have hit that hard with me either.
    Will probably wait for the next book and see if i want to read them as a pair.

  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    You are all crazy. Skin Game was quite good!

    ShadowhopeWACriminalPailryderElvenshaeKetBraLindstopgapkime
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    edited July 20
    It was not bad, just, not a big hit for me.
    Same for Cold Days.
    Though i think i did enjoy them more at the time than i do in hindsight.
    Ghost Stories remains pretty good though.
    Spoilers for stuff after Ghost Stories.
    I guess i'm kinda disappointed about what has been done with Harry becomming the winter knight. And Molly becomming one of the fay queens.
    Them gaining the mantles was something i was stoked about, but i guess they pay off has been, so far, not that great.
    Maybe i'm just tired of bittersweet and downer endings, enough of those in the real world.

    Nyysjan on
    Ringo
  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    edited July 20
    Butcher is definitely slow playing them.
    The Mantles and what they're going to do to Harry/Molly is really slowly being rolled out. I'm a little let down that Harry seems to buy that the Knight mantle is mostly just short circuiting pain and parlor tricks.

    Molly though....I think she's trying very hard to not let on how much the Mantle has changed her and is imposing itself on her. That really does not seem to be going good places.

    DevoutlyApathetic on
    ShadowhopeZibblsnrtElvenshaekime
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