Storm Front (Dresden Files Series #1)

Storm Front (Dresden Files Series #1)

4.1 2092
by Jim Butcher

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For Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, business, to put it mildly, stinks. So when the police bring him in to consult on a grisly double murder committed with black magic, Harry's seeing dollar signs. But where there's black magic, there's a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry's name.


For Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, business, to put it mildly, stinks. So when the police bring him in to consult on a grisly double murder committed with black magic, Harry's seeing dollar signs. But where there's black magic, there's a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry's name.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Beginning an unusually successful adaptation, this volume covers the first part of the book that introduced Harry Dresden, a modern wizard who's set up shop in downtown Chicago. Unlike Hellblazer 'sJohn Constantine, Dresden is unambiguously heroic, cooperating with the police to solve gruesome magical murderers while also working solo as a supernatural PI. The two cases he undertakes here don't seem related, but they both send Dresden out into the mean streets and eldritch corners of the modern world. More to the point, they let Butcher (and adapter Powers) set up a rich, quirky universe for Dresden to explore, as when he interviews a spiteful vampire madam or fights a trench coat-clad demonic assassin. Powers and artist Sayaf do a very nice job of working a lot of text-conversations and Harry's reflections-into lively-looking pages. The action is well handled, too, especially when the climactic battle with the demon moves from inside Harry's apartment to outdoors during a thunderstorm. The Dresden novels are already New York Times bestsellers, and this comic looks like another winner. (June)

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Harriet J. Klausner
"...a unique, very special experience...for lovers of the supernatural, fantasy, horror, and police procedural....A refreshingly creative vampire novel like this one comes along once in an immortal's lifetime...this particular one is very special, a keeper above keepers." -- The Midwest Book Review

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
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Dresden Files Series
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Penguin Group
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478 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Read an Excerpt

Jim Butcher: The Dresden Files: Storm Front: Vol. 1: The Gathering Storm

By Jim Butcher

Del Rey/Dabel Brothers

Copyright © 2009 Jim Butcher
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780345506399

Introduction by Jim Butcher

I remember the first comic book I ever bought with my own money. It was 1978, and I was seven. My family was on vacation in Acapulco, and I got myself the kind of sunburn that leaves you lying on your stomach for a day or two while you heal up. Being seven, and speaking no Spanish (and thus unable to understand the TV), I was bored out of my mind in short order. I'd already read through my copy of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and I wandered down to the hotel store to get a snack and look for another book. They didn't have any books in English, or at least nothing good.

But then I saw that they had Daredevil.

I don't remember the issue, but Daredevil was taking on Tatterdemalion, and it was, for a seven-year-old, an extremely dark, creepy, and rather scary story. I was so young, I'd never seen the word “damn” in print until I read that issue.

It was amazing.

I went back to the hotel store. I bought them out of all, I dunno, eight or nine titles they carried. The Hulk, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, and Thor. Batman, Teen Titans, and Superman. Since they were all the reading I had, I made the most of it. I read them all, severaltimes. I studied the art. I tried drawing a few of the pictures myself (making the discovery that I had almost zero natural talent for such work). And it was all downhill from there.

I read comics for the rest of my childhood, and when I started writing my own stories, they were all strongly influenced by the characters and scenes and situations I found there. Harry Dresden, in my head, has always been a comic book hero. The biggest scenes and confrontations in The Dresden Files almost always crystallize into a single image in my imagination, and that image becomes the basis for the scene around it. I don't have the skill to share those images with other people by creating them myself. I've always had to do it with words, instead.

But then the Dabel Brothers came along with a good idea and a guy named Ardian Syaf.

Ardian is amazing. I mean, it's one thing to turn out a single good piece that you focus enormous thought and effort in. It's another thing entirely to turn in one solid piece after another, on a deadline, day after day. And it's still another thing to do that with someone else at your elbow going, “Hey, no, you need to fix this detail. Hey, his nose is too long. Hey, why is this shadow laying over that detail? Can't you make all the shadows fall different ways so we can see better?”

If you'd asked me before we got started, I never would have thought that an artist would have the patience to keep working to make me happy with the characters he's giving a face and form to. I have frequently sent him pictures of two people who look nothing alike and said things like, “He looks like both of these guys, make him look like that.” I have asked him to convey aspects of a character that, frankly, simply cannot be displayed visually. Week after week, poor Ard has put out one page after another, all of them solidly professional, many of them truly outstanding, while getting the kind of feedback and requests that would try the patience of a saint's guardian angel.

Here are some of the results. It's my story, adapted almost too faithfully from the book by Mark Powers. Ardian has given the characters faces and bodies, and breathed life into the action. Sometimes looking at the pages is positively eerie for me-because I'm seeing, in the real world, things that I'd only previously seen in my imagination. Sometimes, actually seeing those images has been downright shocking. I'll stare and blink for a minute and then say, “Did I write that?” And I'll look and read it from the book, which brings up all the associated images that have been back in the dusty vaults of my head, and THERE THEY ARE, on my computer monitor.

It was, is, and continues to be amazing.

I hope you enjoy reading this work as much as I enjoyed both creating the story and seeing it come together on the page. It's even more fun than Acapulco.


Excerpted from Jim Butcher: The Dresden Files: Storm Front: Vol. 1: The Gathering Storm by Jim Butcher Copyright © 2009 by Jim Butcher. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

Chris Bunch
Exciting, well-plotted, complex, an excellent read and an amazingly good first novel.
—(Chris Bunch, author of The Warrior King)

Meet the Author

A martial arts enthusiast whose resume includes a long list of skills rendered obsolete at least two hundred years ago, Jim Butcher turned to writing as a career because anything else probably would have driven him insane. He lives with his wife, his son and a ferocious guard dog.

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Storm Front (Dresden Files Series #1) 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2092 reviews.
Piper68 More than 1 year ago
At times funny, touching, snarky, scary, and exciting, this book is a great introduction to the Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. Mr. Butcher has created an excellent character in Harry Dresden, who, while being in unrealistic situations, seems to have realistic reactions (for a hero, that is). I cannot recommend this book enough to fans of fantasy and mystery, as well as the other following books in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is clearly one of my favorite books! I myself have a very difficult time getting actively engaged in books. I buy many books hoping to get captured by one of them so that I will not want to put the book down. This book has done it! I didn't know anything about the Dresden Files Series until the twelfth book already came out. I read reviews on that one and it sparked some curiosity into purchasing the first book. After reading the first few chapters, I was hooked! The thing I love most about this book is how laid back and down to earth the main character(Harry Dresden) is. I also enjoy finding out what this paranormal investigator will get his hands into. Another great thing I enjoy about the book is that it takes place in Illinois, and the author provides very great detail in the surroundings in an actual location which people could picture in there own heads. This is a great read, and I highly recommend this book! I can't wait to purchase the next books in the series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book, this series, is mystery done right - the key clue given in the first chapter or three, and you never see it because it's just part of the background. I've never recommended this book to anyone who didn't enjoy it. This book is fantasy for myth and folklore enthusiasts - it's real old-world style, with a powerful grounding in cultural heritage. It has a real pre-Tolkien feel to its mythology. I bought this book for my dad, who's not a big reader. It takes him ages to read a book. He finished it in two weeks and was eager to go to the store to get the next! I can rarely pick up a new book in this series and not read it from start to finish in a single sitting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow! I do not read science fiction and generally do not even watch it in TV or movies but I did watch "The Dresden Files" on the sci fi channel a few years back. Something about the character really appealed to me. So when I saw that the show was based on a series of books I had to pick one up. I was not disappointed. The characters are really brought out well and you get more of a glimpse of Harry's backstory that one season of TV was not able to do. The concept of a practicing wizard that can be found in the Chicago yellow pages is so innovative it deserves a read just for that! Harry takes the reader on a really fun ride through the world of wizrds, vampires, mages and all sorts of other worldly creatures in his efforts to help the Chicago police department solve what starts out as two truly gruesome morders that could only have been accomplished but a powerful other worldly thing. Unfortunately, Harry is the only one in the city anyone thinks is powerful enough to pull off that level of magic so he must work fast to be solve the murders, prevent more murders (including his own), and clear his own name. An awesome first novel in a series. I can't wait to read more.
Jimgraz More than 1 year ago
I tend to like fantasy elements in my books sometimes, which is probably what attracted me to this. The fact that B&N was giving it away free to Nook owners was also an important factor in my decision. I always marvel at people who pick apart a book like this because it isn't literature like Charles Dickins. So what? Sometimes you want a good, fun, fast, easy, entertaining read. That is exactly what this is. The main character isinteresting (with a lot of backstory that I hope comes out in future books) and the supporting characters are quirky and fun in good supporting roles. This is a fun book to take to the beach this summer or to read before bed after long days at work. You don't have to think too much. It's not terribly hard to figure out where it is going or what the resolution will be, but Butcher takes you on a fun path to get there. I never once thought of stopping my read even after I figured out what the outcome would be. There is a lot to be said for that. Butcher's style is simply entertaining and that is what I am looking for when I read fiction. In short, if you are looking for something a little offbeat, fun and entertaining, I would recommend picking up this book.
retelling More than 1 year ago
I got into the Dresden Files by accidentally coming upon the ill-fated TV series. Intrigued, I read the first book and was hooked. The Dresden Files, to put it simply, are fun. The characters are not to over the top, and each story (or book) is new and refreshing. If you need some easy reading escapism that will both make you laugh and give you a taste of drama, this is the series for you.
Soliton More than 1 year ago
This is a phenomenal genre-hopping series! An entertaining read, encompassing all the best elements of fantasy, action, humor, and suspense! While the Dresden Files series is classified as SF/Fantasy, it should be recommended for readers from all genres, including Mystery, Fiction, and even Romance! Part Harry Potter and part Hard-boiled detective story, this series will get you hooked and keep you wanting more!
SandmanSlim More than 1 year ago
I read the rave reviews about these novels and decided to give them a go. While they are good, there are parts which are annoying as hell. Harry's depressing introspection really detracts from the story in my opinion, and his very annoying habit of doing the wrong thing while he explains that he is doing the wrong thing makes me cringe. This is most often evident in his dealings with Lieutenant Murphy. To paraphrase, "I'm doing the wrong thing, I know it, Murphy will be pissed, but I'm gonna do it anyway because I'm an idiot, and I don't like myself very much." This grew wearisome by the second novel, and I can't see myself reading any more of these if this pattern continues throughout the series.
SQ-Mom More than 1 year ago
A truly average read. Harry is a wizard who moonlights working with the PD on cases that don't seem to be "normal" crimes. I think the series would have more promise if the publisher would allow the author to finish writing the book rather than sum up all of the loose ends in the last 10 pages.
Esmeralda_Gypsy More than 1 year ago
This guy can write a good, entertaining story - that's all I can say. His main character, Harry, is dry, and funny, and seems to know better than another else how he comes across to unsuspecting people. Action, laughs, and a good mystery: perfect!
Cssmith More than 1 year ago
The first few books are a quick read, and a bit "slow" in terms of quality. However they are merely introducing the cast of characters and the books begin to take off and this becomes in my opinion one of the best series of books I have ever read. One drawback is the author is not complete in the series, so be prepared to be left on some cliffhangers for many years to come.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was looking for something different when i read this book years ago. Jim Butcher has come a long way and I have been a follower since the biginning. I actually turned some of my friends to start reading and they love him. This book is worth every moment of your time. Enjoy!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had never read any of this author's work before. I really enjoyed it. It took me out of the 'here and now' into the 'what if' of life. Characters are quirky, the story moves fast - I did have to go back a couple times to pick up something I had missed - I was reading too fast! I will be reading the rest of his books!
Prof_Override More than 1 year ago
The mashup of genres represented in the book is definitely one of its most appealing features. Dresden makes a great detective character complete with women issues, frumpy clothes and generally disheveled life. The plot is solid but unamazing with only a few twists,turns and surprizes. Likewise the magic elements are a bit trite by current fantasy standards. There isn't a clear, consistant and unique "system" of magic that you get with today's top fantasy writers. Those issues aside the genre bending did make for an enjoyable pulp fiction read.
cloggiedownunder More than 1 year ago
Storm Front is book one of the Dresden Files by American author, Jim Butcher. High-class escort, Jennifer Stanton and a body-guard, Tommy Tomm are found murdered in a hotel in Chicago. The circumstances suggest sorcery is involved. Wizard and Paranormal Investigator, Harry Dresden soon finds he has a few problems: the head of CPD Special Investigations, Lieutenant Karrin Murphy wants Harry’s help in solving the case; Tomm’s boss, mobster Gentleman Johny Marcone wants Harry to actively not investigate; the White Council, overseeing all things wizardly, seem convinced that Harry is the murderer; Stanton’s boss, vampiress Bianca is angry over an accidental transgression; Susan Rodriguez, reporter for the Chicago Arcane, wants a scoop; oh, and he has another case to solve as well, a missing husband with a recent interest in magic.  This introduction to the Dresden Files sees Harry battling monsters, scorpions, gangsters, a drug dealer and other wizards; on one occasion, he does this naked, with shampoo in his eyes; on another, handcuffed to a semi-conscious Karrin. He makes potions (the love potion ingredients are particularly worth noting!), uses spells, and suffers quite a few injuries before finally getting out of some tricky situations. The advantage of the fantasy genre for an author is that they can make their own rules, so this instalment also serves to establish some ground rules for the world Butcher has created. Harry is an appealing character, as are Susan and Karrin, so readers who enjoy this book will be able to look forward to more of them in what looks to be an addictive series.
AVoraciousReadr More than 1 year ago
Harry Dresden, Private Investigator and Wizard *Book source ~ Local library Harry Dresden is the only wizard in Chicago. He has an office where he works mostly as a Private Investigator and is a special consultant to the Chicago P.D. for the weird cases. Lt. Karrin Murphy is the Director in charge of SI, Special Investigations and she only calls Harry in when things are very weird or very weirdly bad. Murphy calls Harry in for a double homicide that is particularly nasty. In addition to figuring out how they were murdered using magic he gets a missing persons case. The wife of Victor Sells wants Harry to find her husband who has disappeared after acting strangely. Just another day in the life of Harry, Chicago’s wizard. Guest reviewers: A ~ my 16-year-old daughter T ~ my 14-year-old son K ~ my 13-year-old son Ah, it looks like I’ve hit upon a winner with The Dresden Files. I am now a hero in my kids’ eyes. I’ll be able to dine on my brilliance in picking this series for many months to come as we work our way through the series. *preens* K has actually read all the books already, so he knows what’s going on, but has been very good about not giving anything away to A or T. Harry is a hit with everyone and is the favorite character. A likes Murphy next and Mister (Harry’s cat). Toot Toot (or as A said Fart Fart when she couldn’t remember his name) the dewdrop fairy is another character they want to see more of (and I know that they will). Gentleman John Marcone, the local crime lord and his main henchman Hendricks are also interesting to A and she would like to know more about them. Bob is also a favorite and Bianca the vampire is not. They all like Harry’s explanations about magic and potions in particular and thought the drug 3rd Eye is very weird. Everyone loves the humor throughout the book and the mystery had enough twists and turns to keep them guessing. Favorite quote: “Little pig, little pig, let me in…” as Harry blows the doors of Gentleman John Marcone’s  club the Varsity into little wood splinters. Damn, Harry. It’s no surprise that we will be diving right into book 2, Fool Moon.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was not impressed by this book. I finished it because I was sort of interested in how it ended, but I would not read another. There was way too much hand-wringing by Dresden - yeah, we get it, he's a good guy. No need to beat the reader over the head with it. If you want a good, easy to read page turner, I would recommend Harry Potter, the Percy Jackson series, or Hunger Games instead.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm a big fan of this series. The characters are real and relatable and flawed. This i not the best book in the series, but it's a good start. Give it a read, you won't be sorry.
Lefinn More than 1 year ago
Start hear to step into Dresden's Chicago. This is a great story that stands as a pinnacle in the genre of urban fantasy. It provides enough magic to satisfy a fantasy fan, enough grit to satisfy the detective story fan, and hints at the personal growth to come as Dresden evolves. My only complaint, It's the same price as a paperback for the e-book. And it's short! 238 pages, and they go too fast. It's a common complaint with the e-book market, and their comes a time when you just bite the bullet to read a good story. I don't regret this purchase, it should encourage Jim Butcher to write more, but the price did bother me enough to stick in the craw a bit while reading it.
Corinna Gibson More than 1 year ago
I read the whole series and cannot wait for the next adventure with Harry Dresden. Totally love these books!
Athena Hatfield More than 1 year ago
Wonderfully written, this book draws you in, although it can be a little inappropriate at times.
Kujo222 More than 1 year ago
I was really excited to read this book, but was a little disappointed. After the book finished it was good, it finished on a good note, but the hero of the book was a little pitiful. He was definitely likable but why did so many bad things have to happen, finally at the end one thing worked out for him, but not everything. There was so much bad things and not enough good or neutral things to even out the bad. Overall it was a good book but very disappointing.
Setblue88 More than 1 year ago
The Dresden Files are an epic fantasy/mystery novel series written in the perspective of the main protagonist Harry Dresden. Not only is Harry, Chicago's only professional wizard, but the only one listed under the yellow pages. He is a witty, sarcastic, and likable sort of guy, if you are not one of the many supernatural creatures lurking in and out of the city. The author, Jim Butcher, does a fantastic job of designing complex characters, as both the good and bad have thought out intriguing personalities. With most mystery novels, the reader will be able to pay close attention and figure out what is going on. The author helps us out with this by placing all vital information at the beginning of the story, so there will be no surprises popping up out of nowhere. This does not mean that all new characters are introduced in the beginning, so if a new character is responsible for something, the reader will have ample time to figure it out. These books are almost like an adult version of the Harry Potter series. There is a little bit of swearing, adult themes, and gory details so it is best suited for teenagers and adults. If you like action, suspense, humor, and detail, be sure to give Storm Front a try.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't put this book down & now look forward to reading the remaining books in the series. I enjoyed the characters, though at times I was a bit perplexed by their actions. Highly recommend!
Fluffy_the_Reader More than 1 year ago
This was a B&N eBook freebie and I found the Harry Dresden character interesting enough to find out more about him in the sequels to this book. Harry's down-on-himself attitude sometimes got a little annoying, but in general I found his struggle to be a human being interesting. This book had surprising moments of insight into some of the characters' emotional lives and the interpersonal relationships rang true to me. I will definitely give the next book in this series a try.