Customer Reviews


43 Reviews
5 star:
 (31)
4 star:
 (7)
3 star:
 (4)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Turn coat, turning point
Morgan has always been a major thorn in Harry Dresden's side. So of course, he appears on Harry's doorstep, half dead and convicted of murder.

But that's only one of the problems facing Jim Butchers wizard PI in the eleventh Dresden Files Book,. The aptly named "Turn Coat is half whodunnit and half magical thriller, with plenty of explosive magic, hard-nosed...
Published on 10 April 2009 by E. A Solinas

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Magic Formula
As easy and welcoming as a favourite old pair of slippers, the latest Harry Dresden novel is deep in Jim Butcher's comfort zone, with well established supporting cast and set of locations. Although masquerading as a gritty, sexy , violent Chicago-set cross-genre PI/Fantasy novel, at heart this series is very soft centred. At times, with a super intelligent dog taking...
Published on 6 Jan 2011 by Rotgut


‹ Previous | 1 25 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Turn coat, turning point, 10 April 2009
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Morgan has always been a major thorn in Harry Dresden's side. So of course, he appears on Harry's doorstep, half dead and convicted of murder.

But that's only one of the problems facing Jim Butchers wizard PI in the eleventh Dresden Files Book,. The aptly named "Turn Coat is half whodunnit and half magical thriller, with plenty of explosive magic, hard-nosed wizards, deadly conspiracy and plenty of grotesque monsters and vampires. What's more, Butcher pulls some brilliant plot twists out of his hat, including some that are sure to wrench the heart.

An injured Morgan turns up at Harry's door, hunted by Wardens and convicted of murdering Aleron LaFortier for the Red Court. Even worse, it's an airtight case against him.

But Harry can't bring himself to believe that Morgan could ever do something treacherous (even if Morgan is a big bottom-pain). His investigations take him on an unpleasant tightrope to vampire hangouts and the Council HQ, where he learns that LaFortier's death could -- if left unpunished -- lead to a very messy civil war between the weakened wizard factions. In other words, the Black Council is making a move.

And Harry has problems close to him as well -- a price on Morgan's head, the Binder's ectoplasmic hordes, and a chilling immortal monster of Native American legend called a naagloshii (skinwalker). When the naagloshii kidnaps Thomas and trashes the Raith mansion, Harry must find a way not only of saving his brother and Morgan from certain death -- but unveiling the traitor within the Council as well. Hard to do when everyone is very, very mad at you...

"Turn Coat" is definitely a turning point in the Dresden Files series, where the Black Council becomes a widely-known -- though not widely-acknowledged -- reality, and Butcher is clearly setting up a massive conflict. Relationships are shattered, alliances are strained, personalities are changed, a traitor is revealed and the White Council is more openly threatened by the Black Council. A few people even die.

And Butcher does a pretty brilliant job meshing together fantasy, political thrillers and Agatha Christie-style murder mystery. He fills the story with sharp dark-edged noir prose, fun dialogue ("Mission accomplished, my lord of pizza!"), and some literally explosive action scenes (including a pitched battle on a rainy magical island). But despite the dark, grim cast of the plot, Butcher doesn't forget to add some humor to the mix. Where else can you find a spell that uses Silly String?

What's more, he fleshes out the rather mysterious Council, and shows the motivations and sacrifices that it has been built on, as well as its reasons for being so strict and reclusive. The one problem is that the murderer is a bit obvious, and I expected someone a bit more... important.

Harry proves himself to be the right kind of guy simply by wanting to prove Morgan innocent, and by forging ahead with some really risky magic that even the Gatekeeper blanches at. But his quest for justice takes away some people that he cares about as well, leaving some terrible long-term repercussions for his brother Thomas. And Butcher takes great care to show that while Morgan is annoying and self-righteous, he's also strong and honorable. And once he was more like Harry.

"Turn Coat" also fleshes out the Council considerably, showing them more as real people -- the Merlin eats sandwiches, Mai is revoltingly rigid, and there are even bureaucromancers. And "Injun Joe" shows the incredible range of his power, as well as the sadness of his past. Butcher needs to show a bit more of this awesome old wizard, because he rules.

"Turn Coat" is a brilliant turning point for the Dresden Files series, as well as a painful series of lessons for Jim Butcher's wizard anti-hero. And the battle is hardly over yet.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Changes, 10 April 2009
Let it be known I am an avid reader. After lending Proven Guilty a few years ago and reading it cover to cover in one afternoon I bought the rest and emerged a week later craving another Dresden novel.

Those who read the series will have their own opinions of course, but I really liked this book, though the ending was sad for Harry I think. Don't worry, no spoilers here.

If you are just browsing and wondering about taking the plunge, don't worry. Grab!

A bit about the series, Harry is a Wizard in Chicago who runs a P.I service and helps the local police with supernatural crimes. A good guy living under a shadow for past deeds trying to do the good thing.

The books have a bit of almost everything, they cover vampires and werewolves, daemons and fairies, wizards and gangsters. I really like them I think mainly because they are not too out there...seems strange to say that about a book with fairies in it but there it was. They have a very gritty feel to them, Jim draws you in and makes you interested with the characters. The books have all kinds of side stories (relationships, funny events etc) and they all come together nicely in a book or as part of story arcs. If you like a bit of magic and mystery/action this is the book series for you.

Highly Recommended 'Dude!' (when you read the book you will get the joke :))
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars its a pivotal turn(coat) for Harry, 14 April 2009
By 
Ms. C. N. Sweeney "book wrrm" (manchester england) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
well by the end of the book i was depressed. Depressed on two levels; one i was sad i will have to wait a very long time for the next installment and two because the subject matter wrenched my heart.

Afew deaths here and ends of relationships abound. but thats not to say that the book didn't totally rock it was amazing it arrived Saturday and i didn't leave my bed till it was finished.
this was a darker book than the others and like the last one left you on a cliff hanger - we never really discover what happened to Michael Carpenter ( an off the cuff remark about his physicality was not enough Mr Butcher!) nor was the no mention of my favourite character Marcone! but i did like seeing the more fleshed out characters of the council and the politics at play within it.

This book has a lot of questions that i hope get answered in the next one. Not a book to start with as too much background and this was definitely one for the fans who had read the others first but still great urban fantasy - he is the master.

Im still in two minds on how much i love this book though, like Harry i feel a little alone at the end of it and may need to read it again to pick up on the minutaie but coming on the heels of fab graphic novel backup as well was very disappointed in the whole thomas/ harry dynamic fading.

In all though a wonderful novel and like Harry himself, One needs to read it more than once to get a true measure of it ( him)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dresden still got the magic, 12 April 2009
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
As mentioned in other reviews you really can't beat Jim in modern urban fantasy as he really is the name to beat. The characters within the tale continue to grow along with the paranoia of the greater supporting cast as the idea's of a black council that Harry's been selling for years comes more the fore in this latest offering. Well written, heart rending, comical and above all a tale that demonstrates the ebb and flow essential to a truly great journey and you have a satisfactory story even though it will more than upset a number of the established fans. Definitely a series that I heartily recommend to all readers.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Fun & Games Dresden Style, 1 July 2009
By 
C. Green "happily low brow" (Quenington, Glos, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Ever since I picked up Harry Dresden's debut adventure 'Storm Front' I have been a dyed in the wool fan. I put most of my critical faculties on hold when it comes to Jim Butcher's wizard-cum-PI, so please bear that in mind when reading this review.

Even if I weren't a huge fan of Dresden Files however, I would still be pleased with Turn Coat, because Jim Butcher has finally done what I've been hoping he would do for about the past three books, which is focus on the White Council and actions of the mysterious, oft-referred to in passing Black Council working in its midsts.

Its been a standing complaint of mine that JB has repeatedly hinted at fascinating and critical events occuring in the wider world that Harry occupies, but refused to bring them front and centre. That was certainly the case with war between the Red Court Vampires and the White Council, which unfolded mostly off the page, and looked like it was going to be the case with the Black Council. Instead however, JB has thrust the latter front and centre in Turn Coat and at the same time has allowed extra insight into the workings of the White Coucil of Wizards. For that alone Turn Coat deserves most of its stars.

Add in the usual convoluted but clear plotting, wry humour (mostly courtesy of Harry), punchy action and strong atmospeherics and you get a slam dunked five star book. Yes, its not going to appeal to readers who are new to the series, but that's also true of pretty much every Dresden File novel since Summer Knight or earlier. Some other reviewers are also correct when they point out that some of the series supporting characters barely get a look-in this time around but that is inevitable now that Harry's world is populated by such a large and well drawn cast of individuals.

In fact my only real criticism of the book is that the identity of the bad guy is just a little too obvious from the moment he appears (though how he's ultimately brought down isn't). I was so sure I had him pegged (and it turned out that I did) that some of the suspense was lost. I might also have a poke at JB for introducing the issue of Harry's headaches at the beginning, making quite a big deal out of them and then seemingly forgetting to mention them again after page thirty or so. Then again its entirely within JB's powers to bring them back as a key plot device in the next novel, so I'll hold fire on that for the moment.

So overall another barn storming adventure for Harry and his friends, enemies and those who could easily be both. If you're reading this and you're new to Harry's world then go and pick up Storm Front rather than starting here. If you're already a fan like me though, and up to speed on events so far then you'll find Turn Coat to be another hugely enjoyable episode of the Dresden Files.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars I'm just wild about Harry, 6 May 2009
By 
L. J. Roberts (Oakland, CA, USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
First Sentence: The summer sun was busy broiling the asphalt from Chicago's streets, the agony in my head had kept me horizontal for half a day, and some idiot was pounding on my apartment door.

The last person PI Harry Dresden, wizard of the White council, expects to find on his doorstop, is Morgon. Morgan had tried to kill Harry once and they were anything but friends. When Morgan tells Harry he is innocent of killing a Council member, Harry believes him and decides to help. Morgan is not Harry's only problem. There is a nearly invincible skinwalker on the loose and looking for Harry.

This is not a light, happy wizard book. This is a tough, occasionally brutal, supernatural-among-the-humans book and I loved it. Butcher includes just the right amount of humor to offset the horror, even down to some of Harry's expletives: "stars and stones," "god's beard," and "Hell's frickin' bells." I love that even the supernatural use Craigslist and compare themselves to John Steed of the Avengers.

Butcher creates his world so well, down to providing an interesting prospective about the White Council being involved in mortal politics. The characters are wonderful, particularly Harry, about whose Mother we learn more; his apprentice, Molly; his brother, Thomas; and his Foo dog, Mouse. He brings them to life, as he does the entire story.

Butcher's writing is wonderfully visual. We believe Harry's world exists and it is not a comfortable place to be. There is a ritual on the mountain top that is particularly visual. The story is very well plotted and the suspense is palpable.

This series is not for everyone, but I plan to keep going as long as the author does.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Harry fights the good fight - again, 3 May 2009
By 
T. McAuley (Sheffield, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Turn Coat is the eleventh volume of Jim Butcher's Dresden Files, supernatural adventures featuring Chicago-based wizard and private investigator, Harry Dresden. With any long running series such as this, it would be a rare reader, indeed, who would choose to start reading it so far in, with so much back-story to get through, so the question becomes: will this book satisfy the series' fans? Does it push all the right buttons, and continue Harry's adventures in an enjoyable and interesting way? Well, the answer has to be an unqualified `Yes,' although that's not to say that readers won't have individual criticisms with some aspects of the novel.

After last year's Small Favour, which culminated in a climactic battle with the Knights of the Blackened Denarius, and the crippling of Harry's friend and Knight of the Cross, Michael Carpenter, Turn Coat re-enters Harry's life a few months later, and the tone turns even darker, if that were possible, with the arrival on his doorstep of Morgan, the warden and wizard who despises and distrusts Harry above all, wounded, accused of murdering a senior member of the White Council of wizards, and begging his aid. If Harry helps Morgan, a man he detests, and is caught, he will face execution with him, but if he refuses, an innocent man will die and the true assassin escape, leaving a traitor at the heart of the Council.

Of course, Harry cannot abandon Morgan, and soon he is facing bounty hunters from the Never-Never, encountering White Court vampires, and being pursued by a Skinwalker, a next-to-immortal, shape-shifting nightmare from Navaho legend, all while being unable to trust the wizards of the council who should be his allies. He doesn't face these trials alone, though, as numerous friends and allies from previous books are on hand to offer support: Harry's vampire half-brother, Thomas, stands with him, and suffers for it; Molly Carpenter, his apprentice, gets a chance to prove her metal; even Billy and Georgia, the werewolves, and Toot-Toot and the other little folk of the Za-Lord's guard battle with him on the side of right, at the end.

As ever, Harry is a witty and wry hero, always ready with a quip and a pop culture reference with which to spit his defiance into the teeth of the most powerful and intractable of enemies, while also growing progressively more wizardly as he ages and matures. Butcher's writing skills are as good as ever, and he's at his best in the action scenes, banter between Harry and his friends (and enemies), and descriptions of his use of magic. Fans will be pleased that we finally get to see inside the White Council's headquarters, in tunnels under Arthur's Seat in Edinburgh, and that we find out more about the mysterious island in Lake Michigan which made its appearance in Small Favour (although there's clearly more to come there), and frustrated, although perhaps not surprised, that there are no more revelations about why Queen Mab of the Sidhe has been behaving so strangely, or what the Archangel Uriel has planned for Harry's future.

If I have any gripes, it's that some characters get relegated to the sidelines: Karin Murphy of the Chicago PD, though as redoubtable as ever, seems to have less to do this time around, and Bob the Skull hardly appears at all, but then when dealing with such weight of series history, it's perhaps inevitable that some old favourites won't always get as much space in the story. All I can do is hope that next time around they get to play a larger role, and that there are more revelations to come, as the pursuit of the Black Council continues. I'll certainly be putting in a pre-order for Dresden 12, as soon as it's possible to do so, and eagerly awaiting the continuation of his adventures.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yet another great read from Jim, 20 April 2009
The adventures of Harry Dresden continue in this book, and if you've been following the books I will spare you from the recap, and avoid including a paragraph that would effectively be a blurb.

With the events of the last book the White Council has run into hard times, and things turn from bad to worse as they are beset by enemies from all sides and they start to fracture from within.

There is some great character development amongst members of the White Council, Harry's relationship with the werewolves, and Thomas's fight against himself is explored further... and it seems to have turned for the worse.

There is once again, to be expected from Jim great action and mayhem in this book. It's definitely a landmark in the series as things become more sinister for Harry and the White Council than ever before, and the storm clouds haven't even started rolling in yet.

If you're already reading the series, I doubt this review will make much of a impact as you'll probably get to this book eventually. So all I can say is. Pre-order the next one. It's worth it, and in between the wait for new Dresden Files books - read Codex Alera.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What to read now?, 13 May 2009
By 
Great read!
Finished it in a week, which is good going for me.
Butcher is pretty hard on some major characters, as youll find out.
Re-visit some old haunts in this one too.
Keep them coming to this standard Jim and I'll keep buying, thought one or two of the last in the saga were getting a bit tired but youre back to your best again with this one!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Magic Formula, 6 Jan 2011
By 
Rotgut "rotgut" (Warrington UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
As easy and welcoming as a favourite old pair of slippers, the latest Harry Dresden novel is deep in Jim Butcher's comfort zone, with well established supporting cast and set of locations. Although masquerading as a gritty, sexy , violent Chicago-set cross-genre PI/Fantasy novel, at heart this series is very soft centred. At times, with a super intelligent dog taking centre stage, it almost resembles an episode of "Lassie"

Butcher is obviously very fond of his fictional creations, especially his protagonist, the wizard Harry Dresden who is also the narrator of this successful long running series of enjoyable books. A minor irritant in these tales is how most of the other characters can't wait to fall over themselves to help our hero. So, in this book, we meet Vince Graver, a PI hired to work against Dresden; in less than 5 pages, won over by nothing more than Harry's charisma and charm, Graver is working ably for the good guys. Reprehensible demon summoning baddie Binder and even uber-nasty Skinwalker monster can't help but express admiration for the wizard.

Perhaps the closing scene of "Turn Coat", implying a tabletop RolePlaying game inspiration for this series, gives a clue as to why Butcher is so attached to his hero...maybe Harry Dresden started life as Butcher's game set alter-ego?

The story of "Turn Coat" centre on a search for a traitor in the "White Council" of good(ish) mages. An interesting plot development would have been possible here, if one of the more established allies of Dresden was revealed as being traitorous.Certainly a surfeit of potential allies was available. Instead a dull and predictable enemy is, I'm afraid, uncovered.

The various action set pieces, especially the climactic battle, are well handled, though they would have been more memorable and dramatic if a few more characters could have died. Generally, it just about avoids being too formulaic but clearly this is part of an ongoing series which the author (and, to be fair, the readers) are happy to draw out.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 25 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Turn Coat: A Dresden Files novel: 11
Turn Coat: A Dresden Files novel: 11 by Jim Butcher (Paperback - 5 May 2011)
£7.19
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews