Storm Front

Storm Front

Book - 2000
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In the first novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling Dresden Files series, Harry Dresden's investigation of a grisly double murder pulls him into the darkest depths of magical Chicago...

As a professional wizard, Harry Dresden knows firsthand that the "everyday" world is actually full of strange and magical things--and most of them don't play well with humans. And those that do enjoy playing with humans far too much. He also knows he's the best at what he does. Technically, he's the only at what he does. But even though Harry is the only game in town, business--to put it mildly--stinks.

So when the Chicago P.D. bring him in to consult on a double homicide committed with black magic, Harry's seeing dollar signs. But where there's black magic, there's a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry's name...

"A great series--fast-paced, vividly realized and with a hero/narrator who's excellent company."-- Cinescape
Publisher: New American Library, 2000
ISBN: 9780451457813
Branch Call Number: AF BUTC


From Library Staff

As a professional wizard, Harry Dresden knows firsthand that the "everyday" world is actually full of strange and magical things--and most of them don't play well with humans. And those that do enjoy playing with humans far too much. He also knows he's the best at what he does. Technica... Read More »

Harry Dresden, the only Wizard you will find advertising his services in the phone book.

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JCLS_Medford_Jessica Aug 15, 2018

The Dresden Files as a whole series is a definite win. Like all long-running series, some installments are better than others, but there is a reason that this series is the standard by which most Urban Fantasy books are measured. Until I read "Storm Front", I had never read anything in the Urban Fiction genre, but the Dresden Files so impressed me, I branched out and read others. As an avid reader, finding something new to love is a thrill!

JCLAndrewE May 02, 2018

I gave this a 5 Star, not for the writing in this specific book, but for the series as a whole. Jim's first novel in the world of Harry Dresden (in the Yellow Pages under Wizard), is an absolute gem of world building. Mixing Crime Noir and Fantasy is no easy task, and Jim does a great job. Someone has been murdered. Violently. And with no leads, the police turn to Harry for help to solve it.

I will admit, that being a first novel, the writing has it's faults at times, but DO NOT LET THAT STOP YOU! The rest of the series just keeps getting better and better.

Jan 03, 2018

I like hard boiled detective fiction. Not so much fantasy now. Why not a blend of the two? Far fetched? Of course. Harry has great wizardly power but is far from god-like. He’s a blue-color guy. I also loved the portrayal of how his power manifests itself. How does it work and what are it’s limits? Butcher writes in a way that enables me to suspend disbelief. This is a dangerous world filled with more than sparks. There is blazing fire as well.

CRRL_VirginiaJ Jun 08, 2017

Meet Harry Dresden, a down-at-the-heels wizard for hire with a good heart that often leads him into trouble in his magical consulting business. This is more complicated because he has a wizardly parole officer who is just waiting for him to mess up. First of a gripping magical noir series.

DBRLCoreyB Mar 16, 2017

I absolutely love this series. I managed to grab a few of the books further in the series without realizing it and so I had to restart at the beginning. Harry is such a witty relatable character especially for being a wizard. I love the mystery involved with each story and that in the end everything was linked was a nice touch.

Jan 13, 2017

It's like my five year old, Betty says about school and most things in life, "It was just medium." It was decent pulp fiction. I usually read whatever books people give me as gifts except my right wing family's choices which included A Purpose Drive Life, The Savage Nation, and America was Nuked on 9/11. I put those books directly in my Little Free Library of choice which happens to be near 39th and Prospect. They are always snatched up right away along with the phenomenal books I put in there, though I have a fantasy that the alt right pieces are immediately sold at a half price bookstore.

Jul 07, 2016

I love these books, the Dresdon file. Mystery and Magic with a whirl wind of another realm. With little glimpes of the fear vistiting this world called the never never might bring. I love the touch on rhe teacher Bob of magic and the creative spells Harry and Bob conjure together. In this book my favorite part was waiting to see how each spell effected Harry and the out come. Great suspense.

Jun 23, 2016

The first two chapters were quite engaging as the world building unfolded. Noir-ish, humorous, urban-fantasy. Then the book took a dip for me and felt far-fetched, dry, and a formulaic. (Not to mention gendered in ways that I generally find annoying. I know it's noir, but... bleh). So then reading began to feel like a I slog.

Towards the end, it started to pick up again. Yes, it was still far-fetched and yes, the character continues to be an unnecessary rogue (I can't help but imagine that he wouldn't be having such a hard time if he would just work with others and/or tell people things. But no, he's got to be aloof/mysterious/one man against the world). And yet, I couldn't help but sort of admire the main characters general belief system around the use of magic. And that made him sort of likeable enough that you hope he pulls through.

So. Normally after finishing a book like this I would say "Well, that's an interesting new world - but I've probably had enough" and wouldn't really return. But in this case, since this was a first book (and the writing itself wasn't horrible) AND since folks that I trust say the series gets better over time, I might stick with it. I'm not jumping to read it right away, but I imagine I'll pick up the second from the library at some point when I need a light, non-challenging, popcorn read.

BostonPL_LauraB Jun 14, 2016

I actually quite enjoyed the first in this series, and that is mostly due to the character of Harry Dresden and just partially due to the plot. I'm usually a bigger reader for plot, so this was interesting. I'll definitely continue the series at some point.

KATIE ESCHER Jun 07, 2016

A snarky wizard private eye?! Sign me up! Jim Butcher does a great job creating a supernatural Chicago that still feels very modern. It's fun to read the relationship between Dresden and other non-supernatural people in his world.

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Age Suitability

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Jan 11, 2018

gradientcat thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Nov 10, 2013

flufficorn thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

ShoabK Feb 26, 2012

ShoabK thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


Add Notices

Mar 29, 2016

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Umm, talk about the sex scenes but not the graphic detail of a murder? What's wrong with you people?

Nov 10, 2013

Sexual Content: There are sex acts in the book that, while not described in full detail, are still described.

ShoabK Feb 26, 2012

Violence: The action scenes can get graphic but nothing to be squeamish about.


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Mar 15, 2015

I was first introduced to this series via the short-lived television show, circa 2007. I enjoyed Paul Blackthorne's (Arrow) portrayal of Harry Dresden. He had a devil-may-care swagger that made the character of this wizard/investigator intriguing. This is who I thought of as the title character as I read the first book in the popular series by author Jim Butcher. Jim was involved in the production of the series.

I also enjoyed Valerie Cruz as Lt. Connie Murphy, Dresden's sometime friend, sometime employer, full time bad-ass cop. When I read this book though, Connie was now Karrin, although I suppose it's really the other way around. My secretary, Ms. Google, uncovered the tidbit that the television name change was due to a real Chicago police officer having the name of Karyn Murphy. I would have been flattered to have the same name, but maybe the constable wasn't. I can't quite figure that one out, unless Butcher changed her name in the later books. But I doubt that.

If you missed the series, here's a clip. (Those of you reading this on a non-interactive site can access the review, pictures, videos and all at If you haven't read the books and don't want any images in your head, this is your official SPOILER ALERT!

Sadly, apparently I was one of the few viewers that watched the series. It only ran for one season. I guess The White Council were behind the purse strings on that one.

When I stumbled into my local Chapters and saw the first book in the series, Storm Front, I picked up to give it a read. For me it was unmemorable. So much so, that flash forward a few years and I'm in that book store once again and what did I do? I thought about how much I liked the series and bought the book again.

While reading the first chapter I had a faux deja-vu moment when I think I might have read the book before, based on the pizza orgy in the cabin scene. But I'm not sure whether I've got it confused with one of the other supernatural books in a long line of reads. So many pizza orgies, so little time.

But as I am possibly re-reading the book for the second time, I begin to think something has changed, and I think it's my frame of mind. This time the characters, even Bob the skull-head, who wasn't a particular favourite of mine in the TV show, are coming to life on paper better than they did on my first go-around. I liken it to being in a movie theatre when you're just not into the flick for no fault of the movie.

There is a gruesome double murder in the city that the police can explain, so Murphy calls on Dresden to see if he can determine who committed the crime because it doesn't look like the works of mere mortals like the local Mafia boss Johnny Marcone. Dresden is glad to be back on the police payroll as pickings have been slim at his investigation agency, at least until long, cool Monica Sells shows up at his office throwing a wad of cash at him to try to find her missing husband.

Whomever is behind the murders isn't content to let the count stay at two, and before long, Harry's involvement puts him on the hit list. If that doesn't kill him, The White Council, governors of all things supernatural, are standing in line to do the same thing. That is if Murphy doesn't arrest him first. No, it does not look good for Harry.

Obviously, as there are more books in the series, Harry survives. But it's a fun ride to see how he gets out of the mess he's gotten himself into.

I'm giving this three howls, moving onto the second book in the series and hoping for greater things. As it turns out, I HAD partially read the book before. Mr. Butcher gets double royalties on that one. My bad.


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