Here, together for the first time, are the shorter works of #1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher-a compendium of cases that Harry and his cadre of allies managed to close in record time. The tales range from the deadly serious to the absurdly hilarious. Also included is a new, never-before-published novella that takes place after the cliff-hanger ending of the new April 2010 hardcover, Changes. This is a must-have collection for every devoted Harry Dresden fan as well as a perfect introduction for readers ready to meet Chicago’s only professional wizard.
OK let me say first off that I am not a huge anthology fan and the main reason for that is that most of the stories contained in the anthologies aren’t worth squat and do nothing to advance the plot of the overall book series concerned. The Dresden Files short stories are different in that respect, they are usually a lot longer than most of their anthology companions, usually 20-40+ pages (some even qualify for novella status) and they do give you additional information that does make it worthwhile reading them. I also don’t care to pay twice for the same material, and if I’ve already shelled out cold hard cash for all those separate anthologies, then I do not really want to buy another anthology that contains something that I’ve already bought. Charlaine Harris has recently done the same thing and it just says “milking it for all it’s worth” to me (by the way her short stories are pointless for the most part)
The problem I have with this anthology is that all of the stories except one have already appeared in other anthologies or free on the author’s site, so if you are a big Dresden fan like me then you’ve probably already hunted them down from those other publications and read them, so the point of buying this book is 1. because you are a fan and you want to have all your Dresden shorts in one place or 2. you want to read Aftermath to find out what happens after the cliffhanger ending of Changes.
Lemme clear something up for you and save you some money – Dresden’s fate is still unknown and reading Aftermath will not clear that up for you. Aftermath is narrated by Murphy and it’s a Murphy werewolf adventure. She mentions Dresden a few times but that’s as far as it goes. You’re still going to have to wait until March 2011 to find out what happens (what, you think they’re gonna tell you in a short story collection when they can build up the suspense and Ghost Story pre-sales until March? Nuh uh.)
The stories themselves are good, and I highly recommend reading them if you are a Dresden fan. Most of them take place between the books, especially the latter books, and some are narrated by Harry and some by other characters. I am a little bummed to find Backup in this collection after I shelled out for the limited edition from Subterranean Press a few years ago. That 72 page special cost more than this entire anthology and now it’s in here too! But hey, I couldn’t wait so I paid the price.
The audio book edition narrated, as always, by James Marsters will be released on November 11th.
Here’s a list of what’s included:
“Restoration of Faith” – was free on author’s site
“Vignette” – was free on author’s site
“Something Borrowed” — from My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding
“It’s My Birthday Too” — from Many Bloody Returns
“Heorot” — from My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon
“Day Off” — from Blood Lite
Backup — novelette from Thomas’ POV, originally published by Subterranean Press
The Warrior — novelette from Mean Streets
“Last Call” — from Strange Brew
“Love Hurts” — from Songs of Love and Death
Aftermath — post-Changes novelette from Murphy’s POV, EXCLUSIVE to this anthology!