Review: Fool Moon by Jim Butcher

Posted April 22, 2015 by Jessica in Jessica, Reviews, Urban Fantasy, Werewolves / 52 Comments

Review: Fool Moon by Jim Butcher
Fool Moon by Jim Butcher
Series: The Dresden Files #2
Published by Roc
Published on: January 1 2001
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 369
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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Business has been slow. Okay, business has been dead. And not even of the undead variety. You would think Chicago would have a little more action for the only professional wizard in the phone book. But lately, Harry Dresden hasn't been able to dredge up any kind of work magical or mundane.

But just when it looks like he can't afford his next meal, a murder comes along that requires his particular brand of supernatural expertise.

A brutally mutilated corpse. Strange-looking paw prints. A full moon. Take three guesses and the first two don't count...

howlinggood urban magical CRIME refreshing

I don’t know if it was the lowered expectations from being told by every-friggin’-body that DRESDEN doesn’t start “getting good” until book 3 or 4, or if it was how much cooler the book was than the TV episode based on this same installment, or something else entirely . . .

The why doesn’t really matter, what matters is the outcome, and the outcome is that I thought this book was fan-friggin’-tastic.

FOOL MOON was a vast improvement from STORM FRONT. Harry was more winsomely Harry, and while still occasionally awkward, after the first 25% or so, it petered off considerably. In the end, I was completely won over by his adorkableness.

I was not won over by Murphy. I hesitate to comment on how hard I am not shipping her and Harry right now, b/c I already did that while I was actually reading it, and was inundated by assurances that she has good reasons for being the unreasonably mistrustful, impulsive, violent harpy that she currently is.

I BELIEVE you. When EVERYONE is of the same opinion, it’s silly to deny its likelihood. (<-----this needs a qualifier: when like-minded bookish people are ALL of the same opinion, I accept that it is most probably a reflection of what MY OWN opinion will be. After I’ve formed it. For myself. I AM NOT ENDORSING HERD MENTALITY.)


That doesn’t change the fact that right now she’s an unreasonably mistrustful, impulsive, violent harpy.

Beyond Harry himself improving, there was also a solid plot with solid good guys and bad guys (the lack of which being my biggest complaint about STORM FRONT).

Some kind of werewolf is killing people in Chicago. And by “killing,” I mean ripping, tearing, eviscerating, etc.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: boys are gross. #sorrynotsorry

It’s up to Harry to find out who. And also what. I said “some kind” of werewolf b/c there are apparently a lot to choose from, each varying degrees of, “Oh, shit.”

The werewolf lore was very interesting, especially that twist at the very end. An insect-like demon giving teasers about Harry’s mother, and more escapades with Harry’s ability to “soulgaze” kept the pages turning, and I felt like Butcher really raised the bar.

However, it wasn’t perfect.

There were eye rolls when a nerd was characterized by looking like he should have a pocket protector, and when Harry told the Bad Guy that he’s “scum” . . . *rolls eyes*


He also says things like this:

Christ. I wished the police were as savvy as these ne’er-do-wells.

And this:

That was black magic, and it was easy to use. Easy and fun. Like Legos.

And after he calls the Bad Guy “scum,” he rallies and gives an epic smack down, with this as the parting shot:

“If we were in public, Mr. Dresden, I’d have you killed for speaking that way to me.”
“If we were in public,” I told him, “you’d try.”


It’s an interesting juxtaposition of “ne’er-do-wells” and black magic : legos analogies and “should have had a pocket protector” nerds and “ka-blowie”s. BUT. I see very good things.

On a completely random note, are any of you familiar with Jimmy Fallon’s “Ew” sketch from SNL? B/c Jimmy’s character has a stepdad named Gary, and every time Harry does something adorkable or something stupidly dangerous, in my head I’m yelling “Harry!” in the same voice that Sara (no “h” b/c h’s are ew!) yells, “Gary! Ew, go away, Gary!” and it cracks me up. *shrugs awkwardly*

Anyway, suffice it to say that I am well and truly hooked by Dresden. Well done, Butcher. Well done. *tips hat*

The Dresden Files:

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My name is Jessica and I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I’m trying my hand at writing, but mostly I read. My favorite genres are Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy, and the YA versions of those genres, but if there is a book of a different color getting lots of buzz, I’ll read it too, just to be informed. If I’m not reading or writing, I’m probably on Goodreads or Pinterest or baking blueberry pies because I love them.


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52 responses to “Review: Fool Moon by Jim Butcher

  1. I’m glad this installment was even better than you were expecting, Jessica, despite not shipping Harry and Murphy and things like pocket protectors. 😉 I may have to give this series a try since you’re liking it AND I suggested it to my son who said he didn’t want to read it because ‘there are like 50 books in the series’. I guess he doesn’t want to make the investment. *ha*
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…Review & Blogger Chick Chat ~ Boy Toy ~ Jay McLean

    • Sometimes I miss the days when a good, long series like this one made me excited instead of filled with trepidation, LOL. BUT. I’ve finally managed to convince myself that just b/c I start a 10+ book series, doesn’t mean I have to finish it. If it’s crap, dump it. If it’s not, YAY! 😉

  2. I’m now curious how I’d rate the first books in this series if I read them now. *plans Dresden Files re-read* I recall Harry rapidly growing on me, but Murphy took longer (which is strange now that I think about it. I usually love strong, gun-toting female characters.).

    I’m so glad that you’re beginning to enjoy the series. The later books are amazing.
    E.J. Stevens recently posted…Paranormal Road Trip: Destination Chicago with Megan Morgan

    • The first book wasn’t great, IMO. But I knew that it probably wouldn’t be, so it was easy to push through. I’m waiting to tell people they should give it another try until after book 4 though 😉

  3. I really wasn’t sure I was going to like this series, even when it came highly recommended by my friends, but I ended up loving the first two books on audio! James Marsters does a fantastic job as Harry Dresden, I think I’m spoiled now and will continue the series on audio vs. reading. Great review Jessica…glad you’re enjoying Harry! 🙂
    Lori recently posted…Blog Tour: Deadly Curses by Donna Shields {Guest Post + Giveaway}

  4. Mogsy from BiblioSanctum  

    Yeah, I know people say that the series doesn’t get good til books 3 or 4, but this one was actually one of my favorites/the most memorable. It was the first “real” introduction to the werewolves in this series and it’s always stuck with me.
    Mogsy recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday 04/22/15

  5. I always meant to start this series, and somehow didn’t. I’ve caught a few episodes of Dresden Files on TV, which I found interesting. So the books are probably better 🙂 Dark magic like legos? What can I say? I’m really curious now. Thanks for another great review!

  6. braine  

    i only saw the show. I’m still bitter that they cancelled it. I do love the lores and other myths included in the series.
    My favorite is the skull… Or the ghost/owner of it

    • I was really ticked when they cancelled it, too, but now I’m kind of glad b/c the books are SO MUCH BETTER, and I hate being spoiled for books b/c TV or movies. And, YES, Bob is hilarious.

  7. Anonymous  

    Lol! Love your review, Jessica. I’ve never understood the “… doesn’t get good until…” comments myself. I thought Dresden was good right off the bat. And, yes, Murphy starts out as less than likeable. I kinda envy you being new to Dresden. You have a pretty entertaining journey ahead!


    • LOVE Jimmy Fallon Ew skits! *high fives* And yeah, I’ve been crushing on Harry for a bit too. I liked the TV show, but I’m just now reading the books for the first time, and even I can see how much better they are, so I probably wouldn’t have liked it if I found the books first.

    • The secondaries are getting better and better. And Harry is really quite wonderful all by himself. Give me a couple more installments and I’ll be able to tell you if I think it’s worth the investment 😉

  8. I love Harry so much. He is definitely adorkable, and that doesn’t seem to change with later books. I’ve been slowly working through the series because I insist on only devouring the audiobook versions. The narration is just so spot on Harry that I can’t not have that voice with the story.
    Sarah M recently posted…Review: Dead Beat

    • I would love to do the audio, but I legit have auditory ADD. I’m too distractable. BUT. I have an excellent imagination, and no problem whatsoever imagining Harry with Marsters voice 😉

  9. I tried book 1 years ago when it came out in French but I was quite mixed in the end, maybe because I was exepecting to love it so much. Someone told me that it was getting better as we continue the series so maybe I should so that and try this one.