Sunday, June 8, 2014

Skin Game by Jim Butcher

Skin Game: A Novel of the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher --- 454 pages

This is the sixteenth book in Butcher's series about Chicago wizard Harry Dresden, and the series just keeps getting better.

Now Harry is back from the dead, he's the Warden of Devilspawn, a malevolent island hidden in the fogs of Lake Michigan. But as part of the desperate deal that he struck to save his daughter Maggie from the Red Court Vampires, Dresden is also the Winter Knight for Mab, the Faerie Queen of Air and Darkness. And Mab, devious and scheming and utterly without scruple, has just awarded her Knight's services to his worst enemy, Nicodemus Archleone, leader of the Black Denarians (Fallen Angels) to pay off a debt.

The ostensible job is to steal the Holy Grail from the Vaults of Hades, Lord of the Underworld but --- knowing Mab and knowing Nicodemus, Harry suspects there are multiple possibilities for doublecross involved and all of them aimed at him. Nicodemus and his crowd want Harry dead again, this time permanently, and as for Mab --- she wants him on her terms for as long as he lasts, and the life expectancy for Winter Knights is traditionally brutish and brief.

Harry worries what will happen if Mab succeeds in bending him to her will --- but as his friend Michael warns, what Harry really needs to worry about is what Mab will do to him if he doesn't bend.

One of the best urban fantasy series around. Jim Butcher lives in Independence MO. In addition to The Dresden Files Butcher is also the author of The Codex Alera fantasy series and is working on a new Steampunk trilogy The Cinder Spires (first volume tentatively scheduled for publication in 2015 --- fingers crossed).

Click HERE for an Youtube video of an interview with Butcher at last year, and click HERE for an interview on Ain't It with Butcher where he talks about his endgame for Harry Dresden, his new steampunk series and his fascination with fantasy game-playing.

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