Dead Beat

Dead Beat

A Novel of the Dresden Files

Book - 2005
Average Rating:
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Penguin Putnam
Jim Butcher's Dresden Files novels have been compared to Harry Potter with an adult tone and attitude. Now, in his first hardcover adventure, Harry Dresden must save Chicago from black magic and necromancy-all in a day's work for the city's only professional wizard.

Baker & Taylor
The only professional wizard in Chicago, Harry Dresden finds himself cast in the role of savior when black magic and necromancy threaten the city.

Blackwell North Amer
There's an entire world that exists alongside the everyday life of mankind. There are powers, nations, monsters, wars, feuds, alliances - everything. Wizards are part of it. So are a lot of other things you've heard about in stories, and even more you've never heard of...Vampires. Werewolves. Faeries. Demons. Monsters. It's all real.
Harry Dresden knows full well that such creatures exist. Paranormal investigations are his stock-in-trade, and Chicago is his beat as he tries to bring law and order to a world that exists on the edges of imagination. Luckily Harry's not alone in this struggle. And though most inhabitants of the Windy City don't believe in magic, there's a department that's been set up within the Chicago PD to deal with "strange" cases: the Special Investigations department.
Karrin Murphy is the head of SI and a good friend of Harry's. So when a deadly vampire threatens to destroy Murphy's reputation unless Harry helps her, he has no choice. The vampire wants the Word of Kemmler and all the power that comes with it - but first Harry has to determine what the Word of Kemmler is. Now Harry is in a race against time - and six necromancers - to find the Word before Chicago experiences a Halloween night to wake the dead.

Baker
& Taylor

The only professional wizard in Chicago, Harry Dresden finds himself cast in the role of savior when the city is threatened by black magic and necromancy. By the author of Blood Rites and Death Masks.

Publisher: New York : Roc, c2005
ISBN: 9780451460271
0451460278
Branch Call Number: SF/Fantasy But
Characteristics: 396 p. ; 24 cm

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NAF_0 Sep 09, 2014

ive waited nearly a year for this book and it still says position 2 on 1 book

t
tbebb
Jun 26, 2014

If you don't know Harry Dresden... you should! Get the first book in the series and bask in it's awesomeness until you can read no more! This is your Summer project, no go!

f
fireforge
Dec 31, 2013

This is one of the best in the Dresden Files. Can't beat a zombie t-rex.

Luv2cNewThings Oct 27, 2013

This one was a heavy hitter from the start, so-so much for complete escapism. Jim Butcher starts off with fratricide – the definition found on dictionary.com is: “a person who kills his/her brother” or “the act of killing one’s brother.” However, murder is not new in the Dresden universe. What made it more of a heavy hitter is that he moved onto death and the announcement that one day we will all die. Jim Butcher via Harry Dresden admits: “Death isn’t something anyone likes to think about, but the fact is that you can’t get out of it. No matter what you do, how much you exercise, how religiously you diet, or meditate, or pray, or how much money you donate to your church, there is a single hard, cold fact that faces everyone on earth: One day it’s going to be over. One day the sun will rise, the world will turn, people will go about their daily routines—only you won’t be in it. You’ll be still. And cold.” (15 – 16) Perhaps it is just me, but this seems to be the polar opposite of escapism! Too much reality since tentacles of every day life touch upon death and people in general just don’t want to think about it.

What exactly does this mean for the Dresden Universe? Necromancers! Well, actually it starts with a threat from Mavra which turns into face-offs with Necromancers. All disciples of a guy named Kemmler – a bad a$$ that started a world war and owned Bob by the way.

Along the way there is a stop at the coroner’s office where Waldo Butters unwillingly comes along for the ride. (Personally, I don’t know if Butcher was watching Southpark when he came up with the name or if he was watching NCIS and wanted to reinvent Palmer with a side of Urkel.) Eventually things become too big and too much for Harry and he will call in the Wardens. (No spoilers here, so I won’t tell you the surprise that comes from that call!)

Where is Murphy when all of this is going on you might ask? She is in Hawaii with a certain someone and only makes two tiny cameo appearances. Another cameo appearance is Gentleman Marcone. He has one of my favorite quotes in this story: “What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?” (162) Then there are always the one liners to fall back on, like: “Polka will never die” and “Earth to Dresden, Bob said. You are standing knee-deep in de Nile.” (199 and 25)

However , what really put a smile on my face was Harry’s use of the dinosaur, Sue. Of course, being a female, I can’t rule of the description of Thomas on pg 3: “…[he] looked like someone’s painting of the forgotten Greek god of body cologne.” Finally, something for the gals.

Speaking for the gals again, first time I’ve heard of death referred to as a female! “Death flesh adorns you even now. Nails. Hair. You tend them and caress them like any other mortal. Your women decorate them. Entice with them. Death is not a thing to be feared, boy. She is a lover who waits to take you into her arms. You can feel her, if you know what her touch is like. Cold, slow, sweet.” (29)

Venturing back to death and females is simply a good segue into the character of Kumori. She embraced necromancy so that she can stop people from dying?!? Immortality is just a myth. To explain I’ll have to borrow a quote from Anne Rice’s “The Wolf Gift”: “Immortality as we use this word is a grant of immunity from old age and illness…” Fine; we don’t die, but that doesn’t mean we stop aging, don’t get sick or don’t get hurt to the point where we might beg for death!

Okay, the last thoughts for “Dead Beat”: The event with Lasciel was predictable, as well as Bob becoming a tool!

d
dish_24
Jul 05, 2013

Mr. Butchers book are always engaging and humorous. Good mystery and magic.

m
mhart2012
Jan 04, 2012

I love the Dresden Files. This is the 7th book in the series and I have yet to read one I didn't like or found my attention drifting. Great read!

Incinerated_Newt Jul 21, 2010

In this installment of the Dresden Files, Harry faces off against a batch of necromancers who've come to town looking for their late mentor's notes.
This book runs non-stop from the first page, adding a number of new dimensions to Lasciel's character as well as introducing us to a number of the Wardens.
Very well written, this book is a bit of a "stuff blowing up" story, but it's still a great read. If you enjoy the series, don't miss this one.

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