Review: Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

March 12, 2014 2014, B, book rating, Reading Challenges, reviews 2

I’m participating in the Book Bingo Challenge. This book will go into one of my series squares.


Dead Beat
by Jim Butcher
Series: The Dresden Files, Book 7
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Published by Roc, 2005
E-book, Library
435 pages
Grade: B
Synopsis: When a killer vampire threatens to destroy head of Special Investigations Karrin Murphy’s reputation unless Harry delivers the powerful Word of Kemmler to her, he has no choice. Now Harry is in a race against time to find the Word before Chicago experiences a Halloween night to wake the dead.


I mean, we’re all going to die. We know that on an intellectual level. We figure it out sometime when we’re still fairly young, and it scares us so badly that we convince ourselves we’re immortal for more than a decade afterward.

Death isn’t something anyone likes to think about, but the fact is that you can’t get out of it. No matter what you do, how much you exercise, how religiously you diet, or meditate, or pray, or how much money you donate to your church there is a single hard, cold fact that faces everyone on earth: One day it’s going to be over. One day the sun will rise, the world will turn, people will go about their daily routines–only you won’t be in it. You’ll be still. And cold.

What worked for me:

  • This book starts out almost a year after the last book. His ball of fur, cute puppy (Mouse) has “…gone from fuzz ball to fuzz barge.” And Thomas is living with him still. Harry invited him at the end of the last book–just until he found his own place. Almost a year later Harry is getting tired of having a roommate, but feels guilty since Thomas is having a hard time.
  • Mouse is a great character…happy like a dog, but also wise.
  • This is the first book which mentions Waldo Butters (at least I don’t remember him before this) and he’s a good character. He’s a medical examiner who loves polka…and polka is important in this story!
  • This is the seventh book in the series and all that has happened to Harry has changed him. He’s battered, more cynical, still idealistic but doesn’t trust as easily. He’s learned his past actions–even if well meant–have far-reaching consequences for his life and others. He still tries to stand for the clueless, innocent humans. And he realizes he’s important to a lot of people.
  • These books deal a lot with Harry trying to do the “right thing.” Trying to prove he isn’t evil just because he killed someone before he even knew what the rules were. Many wizards in the White Council think he will fail at any time, but he’s determined to prove them wrong even though he’s seeing the world in more shades of gray than just black and white.

 What didn’t work:

  • I’m tired of Harry being depressed. Maybe if he had a girlfriend he would be happier…but probably not!
  • What happened to Mister (Harry’s cat)? In the latter part of the book he isn’t mentioned.

My thoughts:

The first part of the book is kind of depressing. Harry is  angry with Thomas and feels guilty about it. His apartment is small and usually messy since Thomas is there. Karrin Murphy heads off to Hawaii with someone (and Harry isn’t sure how he feels about that!) A vampire threatens to ruin Murphy’s career. I thought I might need a break from this series because I was getting depressed! However, by the end of the book I decided I’m ready to read the next one and find out what happens. However, I put it on hold at the library so I may have to wait awhile–which is probably for the best!

Do you read this series? How do you like it? Did you like this book?

2 Responses to “Review: Dead Beat by Jim Butcher”

    • Jan

      I like that blurb, too, Greg. The next book came in quicker than I expected at the library so I’ll be reading another Harry Dresden soon.
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