I’m continuing on my relentless quest for new and awesome fantasy series’ with Furies of Calderon, the first book in Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files series. I’ve read the first Dresden Files book (Storm Front), and I liked it, although not enough to be in a hurry to pick up the next book (largely because I prefer my series’ with one long arc rather than really long monster-of-the-book series’.) I did like Butcher’s writing style a lot, so I was looking forward to this one.
I really liked this book (and have already ordered the sequels.) It’s a pretty typical first book – farm boy gets drawn into country-affecting events while trying to get a flock of sheep home. Tavi is pretty lovable, although largely without a distinct personality at this point – just young, naive, courageous etc. I really liked the inverted trope of Tavi being the only one without magic in a country where magic is entirely commonplace.
The world was pretty well sketched out (obviously based on the Roman Empire), and there are different magic systems for different races. I’d love to see what they have in common and how they evolved, but I think that’s just me being spoiled by Brandon Sanderson’s meticulously detailed magic systems.
The pacing of the book was a bit too breakneck for me – the entire book seemed to take less than a week. I’m not really sure how everyone travels so fast – I know that travel in epic fantasy usually takes a really long time and a lot of chapters, stops, dangers, and it’s nice that that cliché wasn’t used in this book, but… stuff like that focuses on the minutiae and fleshes out the world a lot, which I think was sacrificed for the constant action. Hopefully the next book will be a bit slower.
Bring on Academ’s Fury! (although, the titles of the books in the series are really themselves huge spoilers, which I do not approve of.)
Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher (Codex Alera, #1)
Ace Books, 2004 | Buy the book