White_nightWhile I’ve been enjoying my time in the Dresden series, there have been a few things the series lacks.

First and foremost is the problems that arise from the constant narration. The first-person narration is one of my favorite parts of Jim Butcher’s writing in these books, but on occasion there will be whole soliloquies in the middle of a scene about what’s happening or various motivations. That brings up another small gripe, the over-explanation leaves no room for subtlety.

My wife has rarely re-read this series, though she loves it dearly and now I can really see why. While the writing is fun and the stories are good, I don’t expect that multiple reads will allow greater discovery of the characters. In Dresden, people’s motivations are almost always made clear, unless purposefully stated that they’re unclear, and there’s no room for greater explorations of the characters. When everything is laid out, there’s nothing left to look at in the characters.

If you contrast this with a book like Pride and Prejudice (the Wonderful Wife’s favorite, as you know), the difference is so stark in that the motivations of the characters are so hidden that every time you see the story again you gain a further knowledge of why a character acts this way or does that.

The Dresden novels simply seem to lack subtlety. If it’s important, it will get explained. I would assume that this derives from the writing process itself, that writing a ~450 page novel every year leaves very little time to take out what doesn’t need to be told.

That said, I have liked my time in the Dresden files so much and look forward to waiting with my wife for the next new one.

– Written by the Husband of the Bookwyrm

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