Friday, 3 January 2014

Storm Front

Image sourced from here
Ah Harry Dresden. I was waiting for this. I tried Steppenwolf for my S read (and German read). I had already tried it once on a plane in Changi airport at 1.30am. I couldn't do it. So I tried again in real life and not jetlagged or uncomfortable. Was just as mind numbing. Discussions of the human/steppenwolf psyche which reads like a bad turn of the century Anth textbook. No thank you. So, obviously I was devastated I may have had to read Storm Front. Which has been solidly on my radar for a while and moved up much higher after Lexx's one and only review.

Storm Front is the first in the now mammothly sized Harry Dresden series. Harry is a wizard in Chicago. In a world where magic is sort of acknowledged but still not really welcome. Harry has done some things in his past that means that he's not too popular with the wizarding world, and is making his money by being a Private Investigator. The usual though, he doesn't have much money and has a tenuous relationship with the local police as a contractor.

But even though it is such a cliche, it's a good one and it's done well. There's an interesting magic system, there's a good enough story, the characters are easy to relate to and likable. Personally though, I have two problems:

1. One, like Lexx I found Harry a bit of a chauvinistic dick. But I found it more forgivable than Lexx. Which made me wonder why that was, and my conclusion was "Well, coz he's a man." Once I think that I berate myself for being sexist but also wonder why this excuses it. And I think it comes down to the underlying sexism that does still pervade every day life for women, and we just have to accept that sometimes, some men are chauvinistic dicks. And we have to deal with this or we'd be angry all the time. And sometimes it's not coz they think they are better than us. I mean the old men at work hold the doors open for me, not because they are bad people, it's just what they do. And that's my point. I can't yell at them every time coz that makes me the bad person, not them for implying I can't open a door. But when he says things like:

My own hands were too broad, but Murphy had delicate little lady's hands, except were the practice with her gun and her martial arts staff routines had left calluses. p302

That's just plain fucking rude.

2. I can't stop thinking of Harry Ramsden's. This was a fish shop in a small Yorkshire town next door to Dad's own. He used to ride his bike in the 40s over there and buy fish and chips wrapped in newspaper out of a hole in the wall. It then became a restaurant in the same town, then a chain in the UK, and then in the late 90s it had grown to a chain in airports around the world. It was crap from an Aussie fish and chip perspective, mainly as it was all mass produced at that time. But I can imagine being a kid and buying it out of someone's kitchen it would have been great. I thought they had gone bust but apparently not from the quick google for a link. Anyways, I keep mixing up the names. Not Jim Butcher's fault.

So I'm settling on a 4. I'm hoping Harry get's better. And that James Masters reading the audiobooks I have of the next few make it even better.

No comments:

Post a Comment