• The Good: Harry’s between a rock and a hard place, life and death
  • The Bad: Still popcorn-fare, but one of the best in the series; Star Wars pop culture references at an all time high
  • The Literary: Breaking the formula of the series

The 13th book in The Dresden Files continues with wizard detective Harry Dresden. The book is aptly titled—having been murdered in the previous installment, Harry returns as a ghost to discover the identity of his murderer. Unfortunately being dead has its downsides—no body, no magic, and most of his friends can’t see or hear him.

Each novel in this series feels like a warm cozy blanket of known adventures, allies, and foes, with the downside of several installments blending together in their uniformity. The mold is broken in the previous book Changes and even more so in Ghost Story. Death doesn’t stop Harry!

Harry begins his adventure by finding an old acquaintance, Mortimer Lindquist, an ectomancer who can communicate with ghosts. Through Mort, Harry visits Karrin Murphy and the crew, and there is a long scene of Harry trying to convince them he’s not an impersonator. The matter is finally settled when Harry’s cat Mister, who can see him, enters the room and promptly greets him warmly.

The antagonist is a previously defeated foe, the Corpsetaker. She kidnaps and takes over the mind of several of Harry’s friends, with the climactic battle taking place inside the mind of Harry’s apprentice Molly Carpenter. It’s imaginative, action-packed, and lots of fun.

Harry does find out who killed him, but it turns out to be a complicated conspiratorial chain of events. But even so, I will say that Queen Mab, faerie ruler of the Winter Court, will feature prominently in books to come.

Highly recommended for fans of serial urban fantasy! Don’t miss the audiobook narrated by James Marsters.