Fool Moon by Jim Butcher – Review [Bane of Kings]
Note: Fool Moon is the sequel to Storm Front. Although there are hardly any spoilers for Storm Front, I recommend that you read that first before you read this review. Also, there are minor, minor spoilers in this as well, just for your information.
I discovered the Dresden Files only recently, even though they’ve been out for ages, and after reading Storm Front, which I greatly enjoyed, I eagerly anticipated the time that I would get to read Fool Moon, and having finished it yesterday, I found that, whatever Butcher did to make Storm Front great, he improved on it in Fool Moon.
Like Storm Front, its sequel is narrated in first person by Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only Wizard P.I., although unlike its predecessor, Fool Moon deals with an entirely different enemy altogether.
Like in Storm Front, we see representatives from both the police and the underground world of Chicago, with Johnny Marcone a gang overlord, who is constantly trying to offer Harry his protection. And, there’s Karrin Murphy, returning, alongside her love-hate relationship with Dresden, as part of the Special Investigations force of the Police.
Both, as mentioned before, were introduced in Storm Front, and act as opposite sides of the spectrum. Murphy is a force of the law, a cop, although Marcone on the other hand manages to use any sort of scheme that will get him out of trouble, and sows corruption amongst most of the police force.
Fool Moon, although starting off about the same level as Storm Front, really improves in the second half of the book, which really does make this novel a must read, for any Jim Butcher fan.
All the new additions to this series proved to be enjoyable in their own right, and well varied as well. Take the FBI character Denton for example, who is not at first, all that he appears. And, the female Werewolf Tera West.
Jim Butcher has managed to, as I said earlier, improve the quality in this series, and seeing as I’ve heard that it only gets better as it goes on, I can’t wait to see what he does with Grave Peril.
Although I have one or two issues with this novel though, and the first is the way that Butcher manages to repeat something that rather let down the first book. Dresden gets injured pretty badly at some point in the novel, and we have to spend the rest of the book watching him suffer at the same point as fighting enemies, and his injures are described over and over again, and it does tend to get a bit tedious after a while.
Another interesting point to note is that not all of the characters react to the occult in the same way. There are different reactions, which indeed – help Fool Moon all the more enjoyable for that.
Also, did I mention that the pacing’s better in Fool Moon than the first novel, as well?
There are also pretty decent action scenes here, which make the second instalment of the Dresden Files all the more enjoyable because of it. Although there is not much character development, and that’s really what lets Fool Moon down. The Action’s well written, the pacing’s good, Dresden’s first person commentary on the events is amusing, but what could have made Fool Moon even better was if we saw a bit more character development.
For example, take Murphy. She still seems to mistrust Dresden after all the times that he’s saved her life, and helped her out in the past.
More Dresden Files: Storm Front, Fool Moon, Grave Peril, Summer Knight, Death Masks, Blood Rites, Dead Beat, Proven Guilty, White Night, Small Favour, Turn Coat, Changes, Ghost Story, Side Jobs (Collection of short stories)
More Jim Butcher: Furies of Calderon, Academ’s Fury, Cursor’s Fury, Captain’s Fury, Princep’s Fury, First Lord’s Fury