Written By Jim Butcher
Narrated by James Masters
Business has been slow. Okay, business has been dead. And not even of the undead variety. You would think Chicago would have a little more action for the only professional wizard in the phone book. But lately, Harry Dresden hasn't been able to dredge up any kind of workmagical ormundane. But just when it looks like he can't afford his next meal, a murder comes along that requires his particular brand of supernatural expertise. A brutally mutilated corpse. Strange-looking paw prints. A full moon. Take three guesses;and the first two don't count...
It’s been a while since I listened to an audible book as I haven’t been able to concentrate on listening to anything – I have a terrible habit of drifting off into my own thoughts and not actually listening to the story. So in order to try and get back into the habit, I decided to try the second Dresden Files book as I love the series and have read the book before so it wouldn’t be too difficult to focus on the story. Plus it’s read by James Masters who I have adored since his Buffy days!
James Masters manages to bring to life Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only wizard and his trials and tribulations. It’s helped by the first person narrative, but mostly I think James just manages to capture the voice of a world weary, trying his best wizard who has the weight of Chicago on his shoulders. Harry is an old fashion guy – always protective of women and trying his best to do right and protect as many people as possible including his police friend Lt Murphy, who is in a lot of political trouble for assisting Harry in the past. Added to which the supernatural world doesn’t take kindly to mortals learning too much about them.
That’s not to say that this is perfect. Actually, Fool Moon is one of the weaker stories in the series with an awful lot of info dumping near the beginning – included a long explanation of several different types of werewolves. This is interesting as it adds a lot of colour and texture to the traditional werewolf myth in Harry’s world, but seems a little unbelievable that Harry ends up coming across every type of wolf in the next twenty-four hours! Harry’s relationships with Murphy and Susan are not particularly deep, but nonetheless there is a spark with each of them that could lead to something meaningful.
There is plenty of action with Harry literally being thrown to the wolves on multiply occasions. The mix of magic and physical fighting is well balanced and if some of the motives behind the actions are a little weak then the pacing and amusingly wry observations by Harry more than make up for it. As with Storm Front, this is a Harry Dresden that is still finding his place in the world but all the basic ingredients for one of my favourite Urban Fantasy series are there. They just need a little more seasoning and more mixing.
Recommended for fans of Ben Aaronovitch and Patricia Briggs. 8 out of 10