The Dresden Files

I came rather late to the Dresden Files. By the time I had decided to give the series a go, it had been on the go for about 10 years. (The latest book that was out was Small Favour or Turncoat, I believe...) I started reading them because I was heavily into reading Urban Fantasy at this point - I had been reading Kelley Armstrong's books for a number of years. I had read books by Kim Harrison, Keri Arthur, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Patricia Briggs and Carrie Vaughn. Many of the authors in the genre I read were women, and so a lot of the books had a romantic slant to them. (Not all of them do, and some are more heavily steeped in it than others. I suspect that if it wasn't for the fact that the one or more of the characters in them were vampires, werewolves, fey, or some other kind of supernatural being or god/goddess that the authors who focused on romance would have been Mills and Boon authors.)

I got tired of reading ones which had forumulaic storylines, or which had too much sex in them - the authors I mentioned are some of the better ones I've found, even if there are some I don't read anymore. (Quite a number of the authors I tried at the time I have forgotten becuase I only read one or two books in their series and didn't pick up again because I disliked the book that much.) There were very few male authors in the genre and I had hardly read any books by men that hadn't been old, standalone, out of print books. There was quite a glut of medicore or bad female authors in urban fantasy at the time I started reading Jim Butcher's books so it wasn't easy finding a good series to read. I was hoping to find a series that focused more on supernatural elements, mythology, magic and monsters than romance, sex and to some extent, fashion. Yep, there are some that try to hard to appeal to that side of 'women's' interests and it makes the books tiresome if there is too much of it in there. It doesn't make you relate to the character more, - it just makes them seem shallow and greedy. I hoped that a male author would give a different perspective on the genre. However, don't be fooled into thinking that this means male authors of urban fantasy are good, and female authors are bad - I have come across books by male authors which I hated because they were misogynistic, obscene or heavily masculine to an extent that it was difficult to relate to the character. (The latter is the opposite of the writing being too feminine.)

The Dresden Files do not disappoint when it comes to focusing on the elements which I was looking for, and the series brings together a lot of myths and stories from different sources which is one of its strenghs. It's witty and relatable to fans of science fiction and fantasy. Despite the fact that Harry Dresden is a wizard (and not my favourite supernatural being, which is werewolves), and my latness in coming to the series, it is my favourite of the genre. I also like the fact that with each new installment, the storytelling gets better, or at least maintains the quality which you've come to expect from the author.



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