All right. Look. I don’t know how to talk about this book without it getting spoilery as heck, so if you are thinking you might read this book, then just skip this here review if you don’t want plot moments spoiled, things that made me gasp and giggle. Because I have got to talk about it.
First things first, this review is going to be an ode to Butters, who essentially in this novel is elevated to the status of a relucant Watson to Dresden’s Sherlock, helping to solve the mystery and rising to the occassion (finally) when death is imminent. Butters the medical examiner is essentially Doug the coroner from Scrubs: nervous, hapless, nerdy, good at his craft. We learn in a previous book that Butters plays in a polka band (because of course he does) and that’s a more significant point in this novel, wherein he is rehearsing for an Oktoberfest gig. When put in “kill or be killed” scenarios it seems like Butters is just going to role over and be dead, but when Dresden needs him he finally is able to face his fear. Nothing was funnier thant Butters trying to getting his head on right pre-battled and trying to bolster his bravery by shouting “POLKA. WILL NEVER. DIE.” Is just about the Butcher-yiest moment of this book, wherein Butcher injects preposterous silliness into harrowing and dangerous situations.
Butters in general is a hoot and an interesting counterpoint because most of the other sidekicks in the series (Detective Murphy, Michael, Thomas, Dresden’s dog Mouse) have their own level of badassery, wherein Butters is really the regular guy, trying to rise to the occassion. Another fun aspect of this book is that it’s set in Chicago, where I now live, so for me it is endlessly entertaining when that is relevant. This book really delivered when Dresden traveled to the Field Museum because we actually have a season pass to the field museum this year and recently went there, so it was neat to see (though his version of the museum is dated because Sue the T-rex lives upstairs).
Speaking of Sue. Y’all. When Dresden had to essentially fight necromancy WITH necromancy but would never break wizarding rules about using that kind of dark magic on a human and oh yeah was in the museum I was like SUE. HE’S GOING TO ANIMATE SUUUUUUE. And then he did and it was glorious. Butcher’s books aren’t the best of read, but the continue to be a fun time, so I’m going to keep reading them.