Ghost Story by Jim Butcher

Ghost Story by James Marsters, Jim Butcher
Series: Dresden Files #13
Published by Roc Hardcover on July 26, 2011
Genres: Paranormal, Wizards
Pages: 481
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Purchase on: Amazon// Barnes & Noble// BookBub
Add to: Goodreads // StoryGraph

When we last left the mighty wizard detective Harry Dresden, he wasn't doing well. In fact, he had been murdered by an unknown assassin.
But being dead doesn't stop him when his friends are in danger. Except now he has no body, and no magic to help him. And there are also several dark spirits roaming the Chicago shadows who owe Harry some payback of their own.
To save his friends—and his own soul—Harry will have to pull off the ultimate trick without any magic...


Ghost Story picks up ‘right after’ the cliffhanger of sorts Butcher gives us at the end of Changes. Harry really is dead. Well, probably. Possibly… Maybe? The possibilities are endless as Harry tries to answer these questions while simultaneously looking after his loved ones and solve his own murder.

A typical Dresden Files book, we see most of the regular characters and how their lives have unravelled after Chichen Itza. We also see Harry coming to terms with his apparent death and the consequences to his actions; how the choices he made to protect his daughter cost him more than his life, and cost his friends greater than he had supposed at the time.

Death seems to suit Harry as his inability to interact or be seen and heard by anyone around him, as well as the difficulty/impossibility of using magic forces him to mature. Instead of shooting first and asking questions later, Dresden is forced to slow down, think things through, and use brains over brawn. When his friends are attacked and bystanders injured, Harry listens to the culprits, tries to understand why they did what they did, then attempts to help them. Murphy herself is shocked to see the change in him, once she starts to accept it really is him.

Meanwhile, his friends are dealing with the aftermath of Chichen Itza in their own ways, and it’s interesting to see the changes Dresden’s death inspire. Bob is under new ownership, which has proven beneficial to both Bob and his new owner. Murphy finds herself struggling to stay afloat after being forced out of the police department while also attempting to fill in for Dresden in the protector of Chicago role. Molly is on the verge of joining the dark side under a new tutor. Thomas…. well where is Thomas? Older brother is only worth a visit as an afterthought towards the end of the book, but we can see just how hard Harry’s death affected him.

Overall, the book is quite good and a typical Dresden book, even if Dresden himself is far from his typical self. The only gripe I have with it is how confusing the reveal over Dresden’s killer was. I didn’t get it when I first read it. Perhaps I rushed through it and should reread it for clarification, but when I was done with the book, I still hadn’t figured out who had done it. It wasn’t until I googled it that I realised what had happened, which I didn’t really care for. On one hand, I liked how the effect of earlier happenings are still in play, but on the other, I felt duped.

If you’ve made it up to this book in the series, you should seriously read it and continue on. 8/10 stars


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