Jim Butcher,
Small Favor
(Roc, 2008)

Never owe a faery queen a favor.

You just won't believe what Queen Mab wants Harry Dresden to do in exchange for a favor owed to her. She wants him to rescue Gentleman Johnny Marcone (one of Chicago's most nefarious gangsters) from unknown kidnappers.

Now, having Johnny out of the scene could be a good thing, right? Well, not if the folks holding him are the order of the Denarians. And yes, they want Gentleman Johnny to take one of those ill-fated coins and the demon possession that goes with it.

Unfortunately, Queen Titania is not in agreement with her sister regarding Johnny's possession, and she sends some heavies of her own to get Harry's goat. What is described as a small favor turns out to be a serious threat to many of the people Harry cares about.

As always, Jim Butcher puts a lot of heart into his novels. He's kept Harry a good man, someone who'd risk his own life for others, a real hero in the urban fantasy genre.

And we get some favorite characters returning: Michael Carpenter and his family; Sanya, the Black Russian Knight; Captain Luccio; Gard (remember Monoc Security, part of Marcone's protection?) and others.

Small Favor is one of the faster-paced Dresden novels around. Jim had me hooked from the beginning and didn't let up until I turned the last page. I was glad to read that Butcher has ideas for 20 or so Dresden novels on the drawing board, and I seriously hope that his publisher will allow him to continue writing them.

review by
Becky Kyle

25 October 2008

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