Sunday, January 30, 2011
Review: "Side Jobs" by Jim Butcher
“Aftermath” gives readers, perhaps, a closer look than they’ve ever had before at Murphy, Harry’s No. 1 supporter on the Chicago PD and on-again, off-again romantic interest. It’s a theme that runs through the stories here – deeper glimpses into some of the characters that surround Harry. In “Backup,” the story is told from the viewpoint of Harry’s brother, White Court vampire Thomas Raith. In “The Warrior,” which is one of the better stories in the collection, we get some insight into Harry’s friend and retired angelic warrior Michael Carpenter, in addition to some very keen insights about Harry’s position in the great scheme ot good and evil as well. A couple of the stories, both involving magic that loosens inhibitions, build on the relationship between Harry and Murphy, and we even get a little peek inside the world of Mac, the bartender to the supernatural world.
All stories come with a brief introduction from Butcher explaining why they were all written and offering a little insight into each tale. It’s not necessary, but interesting background information.
The name of the anthology, “Side Jobs,” is certainly appropriate. The stories here were largely written for themed anthologies and, with a few exceptions, have little bearing on the overarching story of the novels. They’re just fun side trips along the way. That said, they’re entertaining and sure to be enjoyed by Butcher’s fans. Look at them as a little something extra to make the story of Harry Dresden just a little richer – and get us by until “Ghost Story” arrives in July to, hopefully, answer a few of the questions.
This book was purchased by the reviewer.