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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harry on a learning curve
I must admit that I approached Ghost Story with more than a healthy dose of skepticism. This book had the potential to be as cheesy as that season of Dallas that turned out to be just a dream. Resurrecting your main character from the dead is a tall order. Doing it in a way that stays true to that character and to the Dresden universe that you painstakingly created...
Published on 22 Oct. 2011 by J.Prather

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Where oh where has my Harry gone?
In the last installment of the Harry Dresden files, Harry had been shot and left for dead, the Red Court vampires had been destroyed, and his daughter was tucked away in a safe place. In the opening of GHOST STORY Harry is a "ghost" of sorts, it isn't quite clear and even he doesn't quite know. It has been six months since he was shot and a lot has happened. Karrin...
Published on 28 Aug. 2011 by Sandra D. Tooley

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific read, 12 Sept. 2011
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There seem to be a lot of really long reviews here, more or less re-telling the story for you. I don't see the point of that and would just say, this is another brilliant, gripping, exciting, page turner of a book. If you like Harry Dresden, you will love this. If you haven't yet made his aquaintance, then take my advice and start from the first book and work your way through to this one. You have a real treat in store. Mr Butcher, if you read these reviews, thank you and can we have another one soon please.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lucky 13 for Harry?, 14 July 2012
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I have loved the entire Harry Dresden series, from the somewhat simplified start to the extremely complex later stories. I had been beginning to worry that the usual format - Harry and his friends fight the monsters and ultimately win - was maybe getting a trifle stale, but this book is a turning point and to me it is brilliantly executed with never a dull moment.
I liked the start. I enjoyed Harry's increasingly successful attempts to come to terms with being a ghost and to regain his magic powers. I liked his gradual, horrified understanding of the effects of his actions in the previous book and his valiant attempts to put things right again. Not easy when you haven't a body. His meetings with, and gradual acceptance by, his old friends are movingly handled; especially his relationship with his damaged apprentice Molly. And Mouse and Mister knew him immediately.
The main action goes as usual at breakneck speed and is highly satisfactory, but it is the detail in this one that I loved.
The ending, I guess, was pretty well inevitable, and I now wait impatiently for January and the next installment.
This series is a brilliant achievement. I have always thought that the book I would take to my desert island would be Roger Zelazny's Great Book of Amber. I'd still want that - but I'd want Harry Dresden too!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Butcher knows what we want, 16 April 2012
Mr. J. R. S. Nicholson "BoomBoom" (Herne Bay Kent) - See all my reviews
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This book is writen in the same style as the other DResden Files novels and for my money is one of the best yet.

I am not going to ruin any plot as people should simply read this book and make up their own minds. I loved it and really enjoyed the way Harry is being dragged through Hell and back with each adventure.

Jim Butcher has created a real winning formula here with this series of books ands Ghost Story simply carries on that formula. I love the characters he has brought into Harry's life and the situations he finds himself in are all individual.

He has remained true to the Harry Dresden from book one with each novel and Ghost Story sees Harry having to make some very serious decisions for his and other people's futures. The new characters in this book are aiming for more fun with Harry in later stories, but if Mr Butcher reads any of these reviews, please keep writing Harry Dresden stories. They are fantastic and worth every minute to draw us into his world.

In short, this is a really good book.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great For Fans of Harry But Feels A Bit Like Filler, 1 Aug. 2011
C. Green "happily low brow" (Quenington, Glos, UK) - See all my reviews
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As I nearly always do when reviewing Dresden Files novels I will start with a warning. If Ghost Story is the first Dresden novel you've contemplated buying then don't. Go back to the first novel, Storm Front (Dresden Case Files), and work your way from there. Trying to engage with the Dresden universe for the first time via Ghost Story, Changes (Dresden Files) or any of the last five or six books would be like trying to join a very involved debate halfway through and with no idea what the original subject was. The Dresden Files are great but need to be tackled in order from the beginninhg.

If you're already a fan of Harry, Murphy, Mouse, Molly, Thomas, Butters, Queen Mab and myriad of characters who populate the universe that Jim Butcher has crafted over 13 novels then you'll enjoy Ghost Story as much as I did. I'd doubt however, that you'll be totally blown away by it.

Sure, it resolves the shock ending of Changes and I will admit that the ultimate answer to the question of who shot Harry and more importantly why is one I did not see coming at all. The whole 'Harry-as-a-Ghost' concept also shakes up proceeding considerably and gives the book a somewhat unique feel within the series as a whole. Plus it keeps you guessing right up to the end about how the hell Harry will get out of the predicament of being deceased, or whether he will at all. Add in the usual fine character work, some decent action and the opportunity for some hitheto secondary characters such as Morty and Butters to come to the fore and you have a solid entry in the series.

What it doesn't do however, is reach the heights that series is capable of. After the series changing events of 'Changes' this latest adventure feels a bit like Jim Butcher catching his breath. Whilst the whole 'Harry's Dead' thing is a good hook it feels like Butcher is using it partially as a smokescreen to distract readers from the fact that not a lot really happens over the course of Ghost Story. The primary threat Harry and his friends encounter is a dangerous but not a particularly significant one. Its more about how they'll defeat it rather than will they. The fact that Butcher has to pad out the narrative with a significant number of flashbacks to young Harry (none of which add much to our understanding of Dresden after 13 novels) and a whole subplot involving a Fagin-esque sorceror tells you how thin the main plot thread actually is.

The real purpose of Ghost Story seems to be setting up a number of new, larger story arcs for Harry and other characters. With the destruction of the Red Court in Changes Harry was left without a primary foe to fight. It would seem that the Fomor, glimpsed in Side Jobs: Stories from the Dresden Filesand much discussed here but relegated to a background role, are to be that new foe. At the same time the book allows key characters such as Murphy and Molly to be given make-overs that shift the dynamics between them and Harry, introduces new ones such as Fitz and his crew who seem set to become Harry's equivalent of the Baker Street Irregulars, and it allows the author to address if not tie up few loose ends such as Harry's recruitment as Mab's Winter Knight.

All of which is fascinating to long standing fans of the series such as me, but doesn't make for the most high-octane entry in the series. Ghost Story feels simultaneously like a throwback to earlier Dresden Files, with their comparatively self-contained tales, and somewhat like a filler episode before the next epic battle commences. Having become used to earth shattering, grand adventures and complicated plot threads stretched out over multiple novels, it all seems like a bit of an anti-climax.

So not a mis-fire but also not up there with the best of the Dresden Files. It does however, whet the appetite for what's to come for Harry, his friends and his frenemies. Roll on the next volume.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harry's Back! Dead, But Back, 6 Aug. 2011
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At last Butcher's faithful readers, who have been left on tenterhooks since the ending of Changes, finally get to find out what's happened to Harry. Long story short? Well, he's dead...

Of course, nothing is ever so simple in the world of Harry Dresden, so just as Butcher leaves the reader grinning at the appearance of a character we haven't seen since book 2, our favourite wizard is off to solve his own murder, in ghostly style.
The protagonist being incorporeal (and invisible/inaudible to most of the ther characters) certainly helps to make this installment a different kettle of fish to the previous stories. And as Harry adjusts to his new state of being, so to are we forced to adjust to the new state of the Dresdenverse.

The old familiar characters are all present and correct, but now forced into different, harsher roles in a world left darker for Harry's loss. The book marks a definite shift in the series, from a sequence of supernatural mysteries into something slightly more apocalyptic.

This admittedly lends the novel a slight air of setup, making the main plot, involving an equally dead villain from a previous book, feel slightly reduced compared to some of the other recent installments. It's a tribute to Butcher that even his setups are vastly superior to other similar stories out there, and for dedicated DF addicts, there is more than enough to enjoy here.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dresden Files Lucky Thirteen, 8 Oct. 2011
The thirteenth book, and as you would expect from a fantasy series, thirteen is a little different from the others.
This novel heads in a new direction from the rest of the series, a little more introspective, a little more revealing for a lot of the main characters. If you're familiar with the previous Dresden Files then this one is an absolute must, but not necessarily the greatest place to start. It continues to flesh out and build on the world that we have seen growing so organically throughout all the other novels, and beginning to link pieces together. We are starting to see the coming together of so many threads that the author left hanging around for us years ago.
A superb read, very different in pacing than some of the others but also with a great deal more depth. I think many would agree that the books have grown better and better as the series and the author progress. I can hardly wait for the next one; at this rate, the Dresden Files will become one of the best fantasy series than any serious fan of fantasy could call part of their collection.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great addition to the series....which seems to be moving in a different direction?, 27 July 2011
Roroblu's Mum "ROROBLU'S MUM" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
I enjoy anything and everything that comes out in print re: Harry Dresden and this is no exception.

This is a full expansion of a short story that I read recently in the Side Jobs antho (April 2011), and as usual it was written in typical Jim Butcher style. If you know the books, I don't need to say more.

If you haven't then don't read this one, start at the beginning and it will make slightly more sense (trust me). Again without providing too many `spoilers', the book follows Harry at the next stage of his existence and really features the development of Molly from her role as mere apprentice to Harry and gives more opportunity for the supporting characters from previous books to blossom. A great book that will grip and entertain you once you get past the initial obvious thoughts.

More please Mr. Butcher!
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5.0 out of 5 stars What happens to Harry after he was shot at the end of Changes?, 22 Feb. 2014
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This review is from: Ghost Story: A Dresden Files novel: 13 (Paperback)
We find out that even in death, Harry gets no rest, but must once again battle the forces of evil, Since he's kind of a ghost, he can't do as much fighting as usual, and is forced to contemplate the consequences of his actions in Changes, and his general tendency of acting on his rage first, thinking later.
And these consequences are hard-hitting and wide-reaching: destroying the Red Court left a power vacuum, which now all nasties are trying to fill. With Harry gone, Chicago is left unprotected, his friends trying to step up while dealing with the fallout from the battle stress and grief over Harry. It's good to see this finally addressed.
And besides contemplation, fighting, new baddies, background and information, the book starts not only with a spoiler (Harry isn't dead), it ends with a huge one.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magic... it got the guy killed!, 17 Aug. 2011
If you haven't read Changes, then be aware that this review may contain spoilers as it's a bit hard to review this book without acknowledging what happened in the last one!

Jim Butcher claims that the end of Changes is not a cliffhanger - he killed off Harry, didn't explain who killed him and left us hanging until now to find out what's going on.. if that's not a cliffhanger, then nothing is! Either way, when I finished reading Changes, I howled out loud at the typical way Jim left us wanting more and so have been waiting impatiently for this latest installment. . . and boy, I wasn't disappointed!

From the first page, it's like meeting up with an old friend - one where it doesn't matter how long it's been since you last spoke, you simply pick up where you left off and carry on. That's how it is with Harry Dresden. From the opening lines, you're back in Chicago and - for a few minutes - you forget Harry's dead... that is until he reminds you . . which he does, loudly and often.

Jim's writing style is as superb as always, in fact I'd say even more so on this book. The story - which I won't spoil for those who haven't read it - is sharp, with the sarky quick-witted comments Dresden fans know and love and the other characters from previous books make an appearance too, as well as some new ones.

I read Ghost Story over a weekend, breaking only to feed the kids and sleep, and found it hard to drag myself away from it even then. The story keeps you guessing and, I don't know about anyone else who has read it, I wasn't expecting some of the final results at all. There are some very real laugh out loud moments as well as some where you're more vocal with "Holy Crap!" I suggest you don't read this in public unless you don't care about the odd looks you may become the recipient of!

Overall, a fantastic addition to the Dresden series and, as per usual, it has left me waiting in impatient anticipation for the next one in the series. If you haven't given the Dresden Files a try yet, do so you won't be disappointed.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Original Dresden, 1 Aug. 2011
I've loved this series from the beginning, with one of my favourite elements being the way that the characters grow and develop in believable ways. Despite this I found 9 and 10 a bit lacklustre (comparatively) and although I enjoyed 11, about 2/3 of the way through I started to wonder how Harry could top this, and yearned somewhat for the days of the wizard relying on his wits and slightly less end of the world scenarios. The ending of 11 shocked me, and I was nervous about 'Ghost Story', knowing that Harry wasn't about to go into the light but at the same time not wanting a quick fix solution.

My anxieties were all for naught; I loved this book. It reminded me of early Dresden in terms of style and plot, but with the maturity that has been so hard earned. In some ways this book did feel like a pause, time for Harry to reflect on the consequences of his actions over the last few years and his personal direction, which I really appreciated. Unfortunately, this did spill into the plot somewhat, as the whole 'who killed Harry' storyline and the book's Big Baddie (a surprise pop up from a previous story) felt like a vehicle for said reflections at times and somewhat irrelevant which some readers may find annoying. At the same time this was essential to move onto the next story arc yet remain true to who Harry's overall good guy persona.

I was also pleased to get a bit more of Harry's 'back story' with his original mentor, Justin, but did miss some of the regular characters, and felt that some of the issues that Harry was previously wrestling with were ignored e.g. his grandfather. I also found the ghostly visits just before the ending slightly cheesy, and found the Thomas scene very irritating as a huge issue which spanned many book was tied up in about one page. These problems combined with the plot issue mentioned above account for the four not five stars.

Overall, Ghost Story is well written and entirely consistent with previous books, deepens Harry's character and sets the scene for upcoming books and is therefore thoroughly recommended for followers of the series. Be warned, however, you could not just jump into this book as far more than the others it does not stand alone and requires prior knowledge.
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Ghost Story: A Dresden Files novel: 13
Ghost Story: A Dresden Files novel: 13 by Jim Butcher (Paperback - 2 Aug. 2012)
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