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It is accomplished

Dr Tran
I have finished the 14 Dresden books and the short stories as they exist at the time of this writing (specifically, I've completed Cold Days).

[gently and kindly]
If you recommended them to me, it's probably best if we get to know one another better before suggesting books, films, and television shows to each other, in the interest of being mutually courteous and not wasting the other person's time.

I know y'all had good intentions. I get that you enjoyed them. I'm just not clear on why you thought I would enjoy them.
[/gently and kindly]


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( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
ssilverfish
Oct. 2nd, 2013 03:01 pm (UTC)
Hehe... but you read all fourteen? Holy moly. There had to be something redeeming if you stuck it out that long!

I didn't make it through the first 20 pages of book one. I know people that like them, but they're just not for me. My husband (who likes urban fantasy sorts of things more than I do) read the first three.

What's next on the docket? I'm having to finish up some stuff that needs to go back to the library (or back to friends) before we move. I usually have several things going, but the primary reads are Night Film (zeitgeist!) and a The Lost Conspiracy (fantasy, quite lovely).
pointedview
Oct. 2nd, 2013 03:27 pm (UTC)
It's less about the redeeming, and more that five people I like recommended them. I thought surely there must be something to it if all five folks recommended them, right? And I'd heard that the first few were weak, but that the series improves, so the hope of that improvement kept me going, too. Also binding me was my 2013 resolution to finish things I'd started, specifically book series.

Butcher has good world-building skills and can usually write a creative and innovative action scene, though I felt like he phoned the latter ability in during Cold Days. However, the work is weakened considerably by poor character differentiation, inadequate character development, inconsistent character behavior (with no explanation of why), and a truly tiresome amount of sexism. I could've handled the latter from one character, but as I said, the characters all sound the same, so there's plenty of bleed-over, which makes me think it originates with the author, rather than the characters. In almost all of the books, there's at least one scene where a naked woman offers herself to Harry sexually. He usually refuses, but almost every female character of any significance is interested in Harry and/or has had a sexual liaison with him. The male gaze is egregious in these books, and bitch appears to be one of Butcher's favorite words.

Given that every single person who recommended these books to me was aware of my time at WomenGamers.com, it utterly baffles me that they would recommend these titles. Exactly how did they expect me to react?

Had this material been authored as a tabletop campaign setting, like a D&D book, I think I would've enjoyed it more because no character development would've been expected and there would've been much less opportunity to be offensive. (The PMS discussion between Murphy and Molly ... really, Butcher?) Normally, I avoid theorizing about the upbringing of people I don't know, but these books chafed me enough that I'm going to do it. I suspect Butcher was raised Catholic with older sisters and has something of a complex similar to that of my uncle. He wants to cherish and protect his sisters, but they are older than he is, and he was under their rule as a child, so there's resentment there, too. I won't go so far as to say he has a madonna/whore complex, but his writing suggests that he's conflicted and has some issues, in my opinion.

I'm not sure what's next on the docket. I'm torn between my aforementioned 2013 goal of finishing each series that I've started, or reading something that absolutely no one has recommended to me but that I've discovered on my own, so if I hate it the only thing I have to blame is the jacket copy. :)

Thank you very much for responding!


Edited at 2013-10-02 03:29 pm (UTC)
ssilverfish
Oct. 2nd, 2013 05:50 pm (UTC)
> He usually refuses, but almost every female character of any significance is interested in Harry and/or has had a sexual liaison with him. The male gaze is egregious in these books, and bitch appears to be one of Butcher's favorite words.

Bleargh, hello there, Transparent Fantasy of the Author. That stuff drives me nuts.

I admire your persistence. I can probably count on one (okay, maybe two) hand(s) the number of book series I've completed. I tend to read the first book and say, "Yeah, good enough for me." It doesn't help that nearly everything commercial is a series these days. Publishers are always hoping for the next big franchise. I read plenty of horror though, and the nature of the genre means most of those books are standalone.

Hope your next reads are more satisfying!
pointedview
Jun. 15th, 2014 01:21 am (UTC)
I meant to reply to this at the time, and then I rediscovered it in my Inbox just now. *blush*

Anyway, I totally and completely agree with you about Transparent Fantasy of the Author, and I may well use that line (I'll credit you, of course). :)
arafel
Oct. 3rd, 2013 04:23 pm (UTC)
almost every female character of any significance is interested in Harry and/or has had a sexual liaison with him.

I wasn't much for the Dresden Files either. I read one of them and that was it.

But, your statement sums up why I got tired of Stieg Larsson very quickly.
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