*WARNING* Certain details in this review may spoil events and their outcomes from previous books in the series. You’ve been warned!

Who wrote this book and when?
Jim Butcher published this in 2003.

Has there been a film version?
Nope.

Who are the important characters?
Harry Dresden – a wizard for hire who always finds himself in dangerous situations
Susan Rodriguez – Harry’s ex-girlfriend who has been infected with Red Court Vampire Venom
Murphy – a cop from the Chicago PD, SI division
Michael Carpenter – one of the Knights of the Cross, Harry’s friend
Shiro – another Knight, the eldest Knight living
Sanya – the third Knight
Father Vincent – a priest asking Harry to find the Shroud of Turin
Nicodemus – leader of the Denarians, a group of manifested demons using humans as hosts
Duke Paolo Ortega – a Red Court Vampire challenging Harry to a duel to end the war between the Red Court and the Wizards
Johnny Marcone – the local mob boss

What’s it about?
Harry definitely has his hands full this time. A representative from the Red Court challenges him to a duel he can’t refuse, then a priest shows up asking him to find the missing Shroud of Turin. Not to mention 30 superpowered demons called Denarians are out to either recruit him or kill him. Plus his ex girlfriend with extreme vampiric tendencies shows up to make matters even worse.

Why is this book a classic/bestseller?
It’s part of a bestselling series because it’s very good.

Do I recommend you read this book?
If you’re a fantasy fan, I’d say definitely check out this series.

How did this book make my list?
My husband recommended it, I think.

Has it won any awards?
Nope.

Favorite quotes:
“In this corner, one missing Shroud, one impossibly and thoroughly dead corpse, one dedicated and deadly vampire warlord, three holy knights, twenty-nine fallen angels, and a partridge in a pear tree.” – p 81

“Let he who hath never worn parachute pants cast the first stone.” – p 154

“Calling up fire within the tiny cabin was a bad idea – but waiting around for the Denarian to murder me with her hairdo was even worse.” – p 131

Anything else?
I’d just like to thank Jim Butcher for filling me in on the last line of “Bohemian Rhapsody” that I didn’t know. “Beelzebub has a devil put aside for you.”

Personal thoughts:
Jim Butcher never seems to recycle any plot line, ever. There was so much going on in this book that it got a little crazy at times. I loved the storyline of the three Knights, and I agree with my husband that the concept of the Fallen Denarians was exceedingly creative. They, quite frankly, scared the crap out of me. And reminded me a bit of the Mayor on BTVS. I sort of thought it odd to bring Susan back into the scene, but then I never really cared for her as a character, so this might be the source of my irritation. The last battle scenes were infinitely easier to read through and visualize than the one in “Summer Knight.”

I did have a few complaints – there was nearly no Bob or Murphy in this novel when they could have played a much larger role. The multitude of stories/cases got a little confusing at times – there were points where I wasn’t sure how much time had passed, or where Harry was going or why…much less how it fit into the story. But I’ve learned with Butcher, (as with Rowling), that sometimes a little plot bit you think is unnecessary in one book might come into play in a later portion of the series. So I’m content to wait.

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