Audiobook Review: Fool Moon by Jim Butcher
I’m not much of an audiobook person, but I need to do something with this Audible account. After unsuccessfully trying to listen to N.K. Jemisin’s The Killing Moon, due to not caring for the narrator’s voice, I decided to give Jim Butcher’s Fool Moon a chance. It’s narrated by James Marsters (yes, of the BtVS fame).
The second book in The Dresden Files takes place a bit after the events in Storm Front. After business slows down resulting in Harry taking some odd magical jobs here and there, Karrin Murphy contacts Harry for his help on a murder case. She takes him to a crime scene where one of Marcone’s men has been brutally murdered and strange paw prints are left at the scene. Add the fact similar murders have been taking place during and around the full moon for a few months, and you have a formula.
I’ve read the first book twice now, and even though I liked it, I hadn’t ventured any further in the series until now. I just get so bogged down with other books I want to read. I had to work out of town for two days, and I figured this would be the perfect read for my trip since I wouldn’t be able to do much book reading. I try not to listen to anything too heavy and this was the perfect audio book with it’s fast, easy pace. I found myself quickly caught up in the story.
I thought Butcher’s take on werewolves was refreshing, especially how he used “lycanthropes,” who aren’t really werewolves, but people born with the ability to tap into the spirit of rage. When they are under the power of the spirit, they are more aggressive, stronger, and they heal quickly. His four definitions of werewolves in the story gives them real weaknesses and strengths (other than the silver bullet bit, but it comes into play as well) with the werewolves we typically think of, called loup-garou, not being as common in Harry’s world as the other three types.
And Harry, good ol’ self-deprecating Harry. He had me arguing with him so much in this book. His sense of heroic honor seems to make him do the dumbest things and aptly illustrates the point in one of my favorite quotes about just how much dumb luck the good guys have. I’m sure I would’ve been much more annoyed with him if I’d been reading this instead of listening to it because I would’ve spent a ridiculous amount of time rereading and trying to make sense out of the Harry’s madness.
Regardless, I can’t help but like the guy, even when I wish I could reach my hands into the book and throttle him while screaming, “Why would you do that?” That means I care about the character. It’s only the characters I don’t want to suffer so much that I argue with. But I do have to give him credit for the really ingenious things he did do during the course of this story. Also, he half quoted Spider-Man when he went on his “Knowledge is Power. And Power comes with responsibility!” rant. How can I hate a man like that?
Also, I’m glad that Harry was able to understand that he shouldn’t withhold information about the supernatural from people like Murphy. They need that information to have a fighting chance. It’s not enough to say, “It’s dangerous,” and leave it at that, especially when Murphy’s job is to deal with the unknown. They may not use this information as intended, but he would be giving them the knowledge they need to try to stay alive. I’m not saying that he should spill everything he knows. He knows what’s pertinent and what’s not. How can he expect anyone, such as Murphy, to truly understand the gravity of the supernatural when he is only giving them half-information?
James Marsters is a wonderful narrator. True, I did balk a little at first, and I’m sorry for that. I was one of those people who got into the series because of the old Syfy show, and it’s pretty much branded into my mind that Harry is Paul Blackthorne. Marsters really brought the characters to life for me after we crossed that Blackthorne hurdle. He did his best to give each character a distinct personality and a distinct sound, even the women. I loved the voice, the clipped, immaculate pronunciation, he used for Tera. It was like someone who learned English as a second language and still doesn’t understand all the nuances of the English language, which I guess that would describe Tera to a “T.” I love his Murphy as well.
I heard one glaring mistake, though. When the lycanthropes captured Harry, during that moment when he was goading Parker, he called Parker by Marcone’s name. It wasn’t dialogue, just Harry’s narrating/thinking part. He said, “Instead Marcone spun in his heel, picked up a tire iron, and turned back to me…” He meant Parker spun on his heel. Marcone hadn’t even showed up yet at this point. But overall, Marsters’ narrating pretty much made this story for me. I’ve already decided that I’ll listen to the rest of the series, except for the book he didn’t narrate.