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I just finished Ghost Story... SPOILER

#1 User is offline   Jokn 

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 03:54 PM

... tonight and I liked it a lot.

I'm not gonna go into any specifics, just some random thoughts for now.
Also I'm not a native english speaker so please bear with me.

It's not one of the best books of the series.

One reason is because it feels like a transitional book.
Changes had a huge cliffhanger, not just because of Harry's fate, but also because of the sudden "disappearence" of the red council the fate of the whole world.
Changes changed the whole world and context of Harry and the Dresden Files.
And Ghost Story shows what and how much has changed.

It's kinda like all the books up to Changes are one season, with the war with the red council being the major plotline. Changes is the seasons finale with the cliffhanger and Ghost Story is the first episode of the new season. It transitions Harry (and the reader) into this new world.

I don't want to make the book sound bad, it's really not! I almost threw the book against the wall because I wanted it to continue. It just felt really different than the other books before. Maybe I just need a reread to fully appreciate it.

What I really liked, were the flashback scenes and some of the scenes where he is talking to himself. And the twist, which I should have guessed, but isn't that always the way with good twists?

Sorry for the rambling and the strange comparison. Posted Image

I'm gonna reread a few scenes and dialogues later and maybe add a few things then.
I'm also curious what everybody else thought of the book.
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#2 User is offline   Dinivan 

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 05:14 PM

Exactly the same.

It definetely has that transition feeling. At it felt more subdued, quiter than other books from the series, and more of a setup for later books - in a way the 'evil mastermind' in this book
Spoiler
felt a bit added for me, more to give this book some action, than something absolutely necessary.

And I fear that
Spoiler


To be honest, I expected a bit more of an old school 'who-dunnit' than it actually was. Still great book, fantastic series, and the next one has to come as soonest as however possible.
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#3 User is offline   Jokn 

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Posted 17 July 2011 - 08:07 PM

View PostDinivan, on 17 July 2011 - 05:14 PM, said:

Exactly the same.

It definetely has that transition feeling. At it felt more subdued, quiter than other books from the series, and more of a setup for later books - in a way the 'evil mastermind' in this book
Spoiler
felt a bit added for me, more to give this book some action, than something absolutely necessary.

And I fear that
Spoiler


To be honest, I expected a bit more of an old school 'who-dunnit' than it actually was. Still great book, fantastic series, and the next one has to come as soonest as however possible.



I think that
Spoiler


I liked the different whodunnit, and it wasn't just different for differents sake, it was really well done.
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#4 User is offline   Dinivan 

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Posted 18 July 2011 - 02:39 PM

yeah, agree, kinda ;)

Spoiler


While all of this sounds like a criticism of the book, well in a way it is, but I still liked the book, very much. I will probably like it even more on the reread I plan to do next week or so, when I'll pick up more details and hints. There is sure a lot I have missed, and I do have some questions, would like to see if I can find the answer on the next read.
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#5 User is offline   Chance 

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Posted 21 July 2011 - 05:33 PM

My take on Ghost Story is that it is a strange one for a Dresden novel not in a truly badway but it felt more like an interlude then a full novel regardless of the length. While the novel I would have found more interesting is the one the epilogue begins and what it hints at.

Somehow the novel felt redundant.

I still read it in one go and found it greatly enjoyable however more on the level of the early dresden books rather then the best ones.

/Chance

This post has been edited by Chance: 21 July 2011 - 05:34 PM

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#6 User is offline   Paran 

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Posted 27 July 2011 - 09:42 AM

Done with Ghost Story. Felt, similar to Changes, like an intermediary novel upon which the whole series will turn.

Spoiler

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#7 User is offline   amphibian 

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Posted 27 July 2011 - 04:19 PM

I finished it.

It's a fantastic book. I'd rate it as one of the very best in the series in terms of writing and character development. I actually cried at one point. Powerfully affecting at times.

Spoiler

This post has been edited by amphibian: 27 July 2011 - 07:09 PM

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#8 User is offline   amphibian 

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Posted 27 July 2011 - 07:07 PM

Also, the Pink Floyd reference had me laughing so hard.

This may be Butcher's most reference heavy book. There's the obvious ones, but he works in a few that'll sneak by those who aren't familiar with the works he's referring to.
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Posted 29 July 2011 - 12:28 PM

I finished it last night and I agree with EVERYTHING Amph said in his summation...

Spoiler

This post has been edited by King Kazma: 29 July 2011 - 12:34 PM

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#10 User is offline   QuickTidal 

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 02:32 PM

Full review now up on the site.

Spoilers only for CHANGES really.

http://icebergink.bl...sden-files.html
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#11 User is offline   amphibian 

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Posted 29 July 2011 - 09:53 PM

Thanks, Kazma.

Several days later, I'm still feeling wholeheartedly that this was a stellar book. I now have zero problems with Butcher taking as long as he wants with the next book because I know for sure he's going to give us a truly excellent book. I have no reservations in my trust in him as an author and would probably even like to meet him someday to geek out on martial arts and whatnot.

Also... anyone notice that he's cut off his long hair? The jacket photo has him looking like an everyday normal guy now.
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#12 User is offline   champ 

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 12:46 PM

Just finished the book and absolutely loved it...

Could go on and on about scenes and quotes that rocked but one that that come to mind...

Spoiler

This post has been edited by champ: 30 July 2011 - 12:47 PM

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#13 User is offline   wolf_2099 

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 07:42 PM

View Postamphibian, on 29 July 2011 - 09:53 PM, said:

Thanks, Kazma.

Several days later, I'm still feeling wholeheartedly that this was a stellar book. I now have zero problems with Butcher taking as long as he wants with the next book because I know for sure he's going to give us a truly excellent book. I have no reservations in my trust in him as an author and would probably even like to meet him someday to geek out on martial arts and whatnot.

Also... anyone notice that he's cut off his long hair? The jacket photo has him looking like an everyday normal guy now.



Saw him at NYCC last October, I didn't even recognize him with the short hair.


I enjoyed the side stories to this book.
Dresden story I thought was terrible, that fact he was dead didn't really seem to have much of an impact on this book at all. The writing felt lazy.

Now, everyone else's story I thought was great, pretty well thought out and leaves me excited for the next book. I just think it would have gone a bit better if Dresden had been a supporting character in this one, and it followed Murphy or something. Weakest one I can remember in recent history.


The only thing that concerns me, is I felt that the ending to book 12 wasn't great writing, and I felt Dresden story wasn't either this time, and most other authors I read, who write ongoings, all tend to go downhill hard around between books 10-12. I'm hoping this is not the case for Dresden.
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#14 User is offline   Morgoth 

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 08:42 PM

The title of this thread would imply there's no need to wrap everything in spoiler tags I think.

View Postchamp, on 30 July 2011 - 12:46 PM, said:

Just finished the book and absolutely loved it...

Could go on and on about scenes and quotes that rocked but one that that come to mind...

Spoiler



Not an absolute rule, but more or less every angel mentioned in the Bible or the Koran have names that end with "iel" or close phonetical variants. One could speculate that it represents the name of their race or something similar in the Dresden world. I doubt the iel signifies some other connection between Uriel and Lasciel.

I quite enjoyed the book, though there were the occasional repetition that I found annoying. Still though, an interesting and well done change of structure and quite the elegant set up for a completely new direction. Harry wouldn't just have packed up and left all his friends, not to mention his daughter. This way, however, it makes perfect sense for him to leave them all behind.

As for He Who Walks Behind, it has always been my impression that the Outsiders were the Dresden-verse version of Cthulhu and his gang of lovecraftian (hehe) horrors. As such, it is hardly surprising that they are more than just pawns. Considering the deep connections between the great old ones and the sea (think R'Lyeh, the city beneath the sea in which Cthulhu is trapped, not to mention Innsmouth, the village of froglike Cthulhu worshippers) it's not too hard to theorize as to the identity of the Fomor, driven to the sea by the Sidhe.

This post has been edited by Morgoth: 01 August 2011 - 04:29 AM

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#15 User is offline   Dinivan 

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 07:12 AM

I took the -el or -iel part always to be one of the hebrew words that mean God, as Uriel for example means "light of God", or Gabriel means "the power of God" and Michael "Who is like God?" asf.

Insofar the piece -iel would be of much more importance to Uriel - who still serves God - than to Lasciel, who doesn't. Allthough the cutting to Lash may indeed have some significance, and could have furthered Lash's seperation from the still angelic whole entity Lasciel.
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#16 User is offline   polishgenius 

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 12:41 AM

An odd book that. In plot terms, like Chance said, it is an interlude; very little of the wider plot gets advanced, and not that many new things get added either, though there are some interesting tidbits. On the other hand, in character terms it's as important as Changes was in plot terms. And not just with Harry; we get crucial new insights and developments on Murph, Molly, and Mort in particular, and Harry being out of the picture for six months allowed Butcher to radically change the status quo and then introduce us to it via him.

Basically, I get now why Changes ended on a cliffhanger; this almost isn't a separate book, it's a companion. That one shoved the plot along far further than any single book in the series so far; Ghost Story then helped set the pieces into place.


Thoughts and questions on specific points:

I see no reason why the whispering Fallen has to be Lasciel (I think her and Lash need to be differentiated, if Lash still exists in any form. And I doubt the whisperer can be Lash; she's a purely internal presence and the whisperer seemed external). He's met plenty of others, after all.

I never suspected anyone other than Kincaid as the killer, but clever to make him actually be on Harry's orders. And cruel of Butcher to make Harry's plan, guided by dark forces though it was, to end up completely ineffectual; though he did through him the bone of the free will thing.

Why does the name Fitz seem familiar? Am I just confusing him with Fix? And his description definitely seems to be significant; Harry suspects he's Native American- Injun Joe's offspring/descendant, perhaps? But his eyes don't match Joe's and neither do his other features; has anyone else we've met so far been described as having almost golden eyes etc?

It was fun having Dresden's inability to act meaning he had to see the world from the point of view of those helping him. Major case in point; Baldy would have been a nothing to Dresden, but to everyone else he's a serious problem.

I wonder what 'the parasite' that worked with Mab and Demonreach is, and if it'll be of wider significance later on.

And I also wonder who the first ghost he meets in the graveyard is. I suspect she'll be back too.

And I love how awesome Marcone is despite not being in it at all. I suspect the only reason he's in Italy is because if he'd been in Chicago, everything would have been sorted out within about ten seconds. And yet even he's so scared of Molly that he'll give up territory just for the potential of advice from Murphy. Molly is awesome now. Much scarier than Harry really.

This post has been edited by polishgenius: 02 August 2011 - 12:49 AM

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#17 User is offline   amphibian 

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 01:20 AM

View Postpolishgenius, on 02 August 2011 - 12:41 AM, said:

Why does the name Fitz seem familiar? Am I just confusing him with Fix? And his description definitely seems to be significant; Harry suspects he's Native American- Injun Joe's offspring/descendant, perhaps? But his eyes don't match Joe's and neither do his other features; has anyone else we've met so far been described as having almost golden eyes etc?

Tera West, the wolf in human form from Fool Moon who hung with the loup garou Harley MacFinn, comes to mind.

Quote

And I love how awesome Marcone is despite not being in it at all. I suspect the only reason he's in Italy is because if he'd been in Chicago, everything would have been sorted out within about ten seconds.

Given Marcone's connections to Turin, it is somewhat possible he's actually there. My suspicion is that he's actually in his territory in the Nevernever, consolidating his operations as a baron of the Unseelie.
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#18 User is offline   Use Of Weapons 

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 07:27 AM

It was my impression that the Fallen whisperer simply had to be Lasciel, because: a) she knows Harry best of them all, from precisely that internal perpective; :( my impression was that it wasn't an external whisper, but rather an addition to an internal monologue (though I've not re-read Changes to be sure of that); c) it seems to tally very closely with what we've learned of her MO -- gradual, imperceptible corruption.
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#19 User is offline   Cause 

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 08:00 AM

DemonReach is becoming more and more interesting. Who and what is it exactly? Why does it need a custodian, he seems more powerful than Harry.

What did they bad guys gain? They knew taking away Harry's free will would allow Heaven to intervene. I doubt heaven drops the ball often if ever when given free power to act. So did they just need six months without him or were they gambling that Harry would stumblee even with Heavens help or is it that without Mab's and DemonReach's interference Heaven could not have given him his full life back?

The bad guys are the Black Council obviously!?!

Anyone else upset that we missed out on seeing Michael or Thomas in a serious way? What about Ebenezar? Where was my main man Toot. He better be all up in Cold Days!

Cold Days better be all up soon!

Does Thomas feeding on Justine again really mean he is going to be okay? Seems dodge and also out of character for harry to be accepting of it. Also seems to me that Justine breaking their love connection so Thomas can feed on her is a pretty selfless act of love. Seems to me like it should not work. Lastly now that Justine is sane and no longer brimming over with emotion is it as safe to feed on her as it once was?

I dont think the fallen whisperer is Lasciel! Remeber Nicodemus opposes the black council as do I imagine his click of the fallen. Its his wifes half that work with the BC. Or wait do I maybe remeber that Lasciel did sorta like the other side best?

When will the damn swords be past on! Im half waiting for Sanya to peg and leave his sword to Harry

When did Mort become such a bad-ass! Excellent

Fomor! I like them, a lot. Their power makes me wonder though, Red Court or no Red Court why have they never made a move before. I love how the Servitors are entirely competent but unlike with the other courts this competency does not seem to include disloyalty, ambition and betrayal. I imagine the Fomor will be in play for a while. Wonder what they are doing with all those Tier 4 talents? Creating Franken-Talent? Feeding on it? I also like how they are supposedly a collection of many exiled races.

I need to find 'Even Hand', why was it not included with small favour! I despair.
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#20 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 03 August 2011 - 07:47 AM

Agreeing with all the upthread priase. Loved it. Rock solid dresdencrack....

View Postamphibian, on 27 July 2011 - 04:19 PM, said:

...Although the book could be seen as transitory in nature, I really do think that this was a crucial step between Dresden from Changes and the Dresden that has to stay alive and subtly fuck shit up in the Faerie Courts. He's now much less "Hulk Smash", much more aware of how many truly staggeringly powerful entities are around him and that he's still very, very ignorant of what goes on around him.



Yes yes yes and a key development for the character.

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...Mouse was glorious.


Barely in the book and he was one of its best parts.

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I am really starting to dig the combat scenes. They were inventive in terms of magic and set-up ...


Totally. Harry v Corpsetaker insubstantially blasting each other in solid rock was AWESOME.

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...built upon them in a very logical way to reach the next step: the Winter Court. Dresden can absolutely take off and go there for however long, because he's already made his good-byes with all the Chicago peeps. Now it's time for Mab, Titania, the Erlking, Marcone and whoever else Butcher introduces.
...


Totally. As much as i love the supporting cast (please Jim - give Justice League Chicago a one-off book... puh-leasssssse) i'd like to see Butcher play with some new toys.

Quote

A couple of questions: It has to be Lasciel who whispered in Dresden's ear, right?


I want to say yes but it's almost too obvious. Then again, so was Kincaid as the shooter....

View Postamphibian, on 27 July 2011 - 07:07 PM, said:

Also, the Pink Floyd reference had me laughing so hard.
...


I'm so glad you reminded me of that. It was possibly the best line in the book.

After "BOO!".


View Postchamp, on 30 July 2011 - 12:46 PM, said:

...

Quote

"Look, Uri, I don't want to say..."
..."Do not attempt to familiarize my name. The part you left off happens to be rather important to who and what I am. Do you Understand?"
...


A great moment. Said a lot about both characters.


View Postpolishgenius, on 02 August 2011 - 12:41 AM, said:

...I get now why Changes ended on a cliffhanger; this almost isn't a separate book, it's a companion. That one shoved the plot along far further than any single book in the series so far; Ghost Story then helped set the pieces into place.


Agreed. CHANGES set Harry up as a serious powerhouse. GHOST STORY tempered him.


Quote

I wonder what 'the parasite' that worked with Mab and Demonreach is, and if it'll be of wider significance later on.


i TOO wonder about that. Fair bet we'll find out...

Quote

And I also wonder who the first ghost he meets in the graveyard is. I suspect she'll be back too.


Inez? I'm not quite sure ... she may have been a bit of Chicago shout-out.


Quote

And I love how awesome Marcone is despite not being in it at all. I suspect the only reason he's in Italy is because if he'd been in Chicago, everything would have been sorted out within about ten seconds. And yet even he's so scared of Molly that he'll give up territory just for the potential of advice from Murphy. Molly is awesome now. Much scarier than Harry really.


Totally.

View PostCause, on 02 August 2011 - 08:00 AM, said:

...I need to find 'Even Hand', ....


You really, really do.
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