Thursday, July 28, 2011

Death Masks

Death Masks
The Dresden Files, #5
by Jim Butcher
narrated by James Marsters
11.35 hours

Death Masks is the fifth title in The Dresden Files series which features the only practicing wizard in present-day Chicago, Harry Dresden. In Death Masks, three plot lines bump against each other in a tale in which everyone seems to be out to get Harry one way or another:
  • The Red Court's war against The Wizard's Council continues in its vehemence. A duel is set up between the vampire Ortega and Harry at Wrigley Stadium. At stake is Harry's life and perhaps the end of the war itself;
  • Harry is hired to recover a relic, nothing less than The Shroud of Turin! Harry and his friends, The Knights of the Sword, set out to track down The Shroud, the thieves, a few demons and, not lose Harry's soul in the process and;
  • Harry's erstwhile but very sexy girlfriend returns to Chicago ostensibly just to pick up a few things before leaving for good. Her love for Harry, combined with her sensuality and her newly developed fighting skills create an agonizing temptation for Harry.
There are some things that Jim Butcher does very well, namely create great, believable characters, write with humor and, provide plenty of action in any given plot. What Jim Butcher does not do well is pay attention to details with the result that there are always a couple of continuity errors that distract from the story.

James Marsters has spent years narrating and developing the The Dresden Files characters and is clearly in sync with the writer's intent and style. This audio was recorded out-of-order from the rest of the series (at the same time a later title in the series was recorded) and the result is that James Marsters' narration, from practice and experience far beyond the Buzzy Multimedia years, brings a polished performance to Death Masks. The production quality is cleaner than in the first four titles in The Dresden Files series (Storm Front, Fool Moon, Grave Peril and Summer Knight) as well. Issues like booth noises and mispronunciations have been eliminated. Overall, James Marsters' narration transcends Jim Butcher's writing, creating an experience best suited for audio over the print.

Other Stuff: I purchased a digital dnload copy of Death Masks from

This book also qualifies for the What's in Name? Challenge #4 hosted at BethFishreads. Death Masks is an audiobook with [a life stage] in the title, "Death."

This book also qualifies for the Where Are You Reading? Challenge hosted by Sheila at her blog, Book Journey. Death Masks is set in Chicago, IL.

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1 comment:

  1. My first thought is I'm not so sure about wizards, but I don't know why I think that since I love Harry Potter.