Brief Cases
(Dresden Files #15.1)
by Jim Butcher

I'll admit, when I started reading this book I was a bit... miffed. Apprehensive. It's been a long time since I'd been in the Dresdenverse, and I'd been spending a lot of time in other universes. I was impatient for a new book.

[Now don't get me wrong -- I understand authors are human beings with lives and other responsibilities and they don't exist solely to entertain me. I have sort of a cognitive dissonance going on where I am 110% patient when it comes to supporting Mr. Butcher as an author who writes on his own time, while I am also mad at Harry for being away for so long.]

But the Bigfoot stories got to me and pulled me out of my "I miss Harry" funk. The Bigfoot trilogy rose to the top of the collection and showed us the more parental side of Harry. We see this new Harry again in the final story, where a zoo trip with Mouse and Maggie forces all three to face their demons (and some real demons, too.)

Side characters are given their time to shine in this anthology. Even Gentleman Marcone gets an opportunity to be a bit heroic. We see Molly twice, one in a heartrending story of loss, and again when she earns that favor from the dark elves and we see how an illusion mage like herself handles combat magic. (Creatively.)

Waldo Butters steals the show as the new Knight of the Cross. Considering that he wields a sword that looks more like a lightsaber than a holy relic, it should come as no surprise that his first "Call" from the Almighty is quite a bit different from the still, quiet voice that pious Michael had heard.

And who could deny the appeal of Anastasia Luccio subduing some bad guys out in the Old West with Wyatt Earp?

I suppose you could skip this collection and still read Peace Talks, book 16, when it comes out. But why would you want to? This book is just fun and gives more insight to characters that Mr. Butcher has already fleshed out wonderfully.

arc received from the publisher for review