What? What I miss in June & July? What’d I miss? Ack! I’m right here and still miss all the fun!
Dude. We hear you - we’re in this thread because we’ve read (and mostly liked) the books. No one here is calling themselves Jim Butcher, and we’re all just indulging in the great pastime of second-guessing and armchair-quarterbacking the series that we’re mostly looking forward to continuing.
I hear yoga is very calming. Meditation perhaps?
Breathe, man… breathe!
Dear god, what is in our water this summer!
For the curious, he actually did post here on the SDMB once.
“No matter how subtle the sorcerer, a knife between the ribs will seriously cramp his style”.
Steven Brust’s Vlad Taltos series. Great stuff.
I looked that up, and it sounds interesting, but apparently (according to Wikipedia) the series can be approached in either publication order or chronological order. I’m one of those people who likes to start at the beginning: can/should I read the books in publication order, meaning that I’d start with Jhereg (as opposed to starting with Taltos)?
I’d probably start with Jhereg; I did and it worked out fine.
Yep. And Jim show up and discusses things with the Amazon community too. He even apologizes for some things, like the e-books pricing. He takes his fans seriously, listens to them. *Unlike many other fantasy authors. *:mad:
Ghost Story was far from my fave. But it was needed and important. Yes, Jim could have just kept churning out the same kind of story book after book. The kind of story we know and love. But it was time for a shakeup.
In whose opinion? And I don’t consider Ghost Story a “shakeup” I consider it a complete change of the theme of the series, from something I enjoyed reading into something I don’t.
Actually, it’s in the author’s opinion. If he wants to change things up from the formula he had going, it’s entirely his right to do so.
I’m sure he didn’t do it with the express interest of pissing people off, but there’s a difference between hacking out crap that people are familiar with just to make shitloads of money (I’ll use Thomas Kinkade’s art as an example, since he’s dead now and can’t be insulted) and actually crafting and writing something that is interesting and makes the author feel proud to have written it.
So there’s that.
There’s also the fact that in a series as long as this one, and as focused on one person and his life, there’s no way to keep making progress in a way that pleases every single reader. My husband lost the spark with Summer Knight - he doesn’t like the way the fae are designed. A friend of mine got unhappy when it started focusing on the Council and the Red Court. You got pissed at *Ghost Story’s *“Ghost of Christmas Present” concept. It’s sad, but that’s my point - it’s gonna happen - he can’t please everyone, and he certainly can’t please everyone with every single book. That’s why everyone here probably has a different favorite book and a different “weakest” book.
I admit, Ghost Story was a little weird, but personally, I liked it loads better than I did Changes. The next one up is probably going to be very different again, and I don’t know that I’ll personally enjoy it because the fae tend to do horrid things to poor Harry’s brains and body, and I get easily squicked out by the brutal noir abuse he takes. But that’s ok - I’m interested in the journey, and if I don’t like this one, there’s always the next to look forward to.
If I get to a point like I did with ASoIaF where I’m dreading the next book and it feels like a chore to read, then I’ll drop the series and move on. However, I figure one or two “duds” that don’t resonate with me out of a long-running series is just something to be expected. YMMobviouslyV.
Did anyone argue he didn’t have a right to? I must have missed that argument. The question, as far as I have seen it in this thread, was whether it was an improvement or not.
I have a feeling I’ll enjoy it, because one of Dresden’s defining traits is his incredibly strong will and stubbornness. Mab has a hold on him, but she’s had a hold on him since Summer Knight, so it’s nothing particularly new. She’ll try to bend him to her will and he’ll resist. Dresden’s struggle with temptation and his ability to resist it has always been a big part of the series.
I also think this book will be a return to form, if with different trappings, primarily a broadening of scope. In the first 12 books, Dresden was more or less limited to Chicago. He was the primary defender of the city against supernatural threats, and as it happened a lot of problems arose in Chicago during the Red Court War. He had to be there to protect the city, since nobody else would.
Now, he’s in Mab’s employ, and Mab isn’t limited to Chicago. Between her direction and Margaret Lefay’s legacy, Dresden’s scope will expand to the world, most likely, though still with a focus on Chicago. Ghost Story showed us that he doesn’t need to be the lone defender of the city any more; between the small cadre Murphy’s built up, Mortimer Lindquist’s acceptance of his power, Molly’s advancement of her own power and character, and Marcone’s foothold in the supernatural realm via the Accords, Chicago’s got plenty of hometown defenders.
This is also where the investigation into the Black Council steps up a gear. Dresden was only seeing the fringes of the BC’s movements from his position in Chicago, and there are many hints strewn throughout the first 12 books that Mab is involved with them in some way, whether in collaboration or fighting against them. So now he has Mab’s resources and power, along with his own human free will to act, and should be able to seriously start going after the BC. I’m fairly sure we’re going to start seeing a lot of small threads that were left loose in the first 11 books picked back up, now that Dresden has the time to chase them. At the time he was usually too busy fighting off more immediate threats to worry about vague clues.
It’s still going to primarily require investigation, which he’s good at and which the first 11 books centered around, hence why I think we’ll be going back to form. The Powers in the world are moving, including Mab, and Dresden needs to figure out why.
And that’s the point my post apparently failed to make.
From what we can tell, by the fact that he spent loads of time (and a pushback on the original publication date) on Ghost Story, the author does in fact consider Ghost Story to be, if not an improvement, at least to be a satisfying continuation of the series. He wrote it, he allowed it to be published, and he hasn’t issued any statements retracting it.
My point is that barring widespread or near-total agreement, there isn’t any validity to one or two or a dozen or even a hundred or so individuals claiming that it is NOT an improvement.
Why? Tastes vary. That’s not in the author’s control, so there’s no point him worrying about trying to factor that in. See my first response.
Therefore, in my considered opinion, in the absence of unanimous censure of Ghost Story, I don’t agree with your statement that it was not an improvement, because I don’t think that any of us as readers get to decide that point. Regardless of whether you or I personally thought it stunk, I don’t think personal opinions matter much, unless they happen to coorelate with a *lot *of other people’s personal opinions. And I haven’t really found that to be the case for this series.
You may disagree with me about that, but again - it’s all just opinions on a message board.
Of course we do. EACH of us as readers get to decide that. It’s the nature of being human and having free will.
While I think Lasciel and I share similar thoughts on Ghost Story, I’ll support your right to dislike the book. I think that everyone, reader and author alike, are free to have their own opinions. Some may have objective reasons supported by facts, others, subjective based upon their personal preferences. If you don’t like a thing, you don’t like it. It’s really that simple. Now, if they are reasons that can be debated, it’s entertaining and often informative to hear those reasons, and the objections of others.
Everyone has an opinion. That’s how it works. That said, I’m sure Jim put forth a strong effort and had many concerns about the changes he made. I think that time will tell how well he did. I think it was a justified change of pace, but ultimately, it’s what he does with it that will justify the detour. My opinion of Ghost Story is, at least a bit, based upon my trust that the material covered will bear fruit in future books.
BTW, reminding Lasciel of human nature and free will - I see what you did there.
I just bought a T-shirt with that on it, getting something cool and helping Brust pay for the defibrillator he just had put in.
I’m not sure where I stand on Ghost Story. It wasn’t my favorite book, but I think that the changes made in this book and the previous ones were necessary.
Didn’t he need to power up in some fashion before taking on the Red Court? Even with the power of the Winter Knight and Leansidhe’s assistance, it was still a pretty close battle, and one he only won by sacrificing Susan. I would imagine without those things, he would have been slaughtered.