I still like Death Masks better, but Blood Rites is still quite good. We’re back to big magical rituals (a five book cycle?) but also a bit of goodly hint of vampiric mayhem (the Black and White Courts this time around).
Of course, since it’s the White Court, the entire plot this time has to revolve around a ritual curse targetting an adult film director. All righty then.
As I’d mentioned before, the best part of Death Masks was the characters. This time around, it had to be have been just random scenes.
A fight with monkey demons whose primary weapon is… flaming monkey poo. Dresden has a quite literal fight with a literal monkey on his back.
An entropy curse that kills via whatever bizarre means it can access. Including… death via frozen turkey.
A big basement showdown with Mavra (she’s back!)… And that wasn’t even the climax of the book.
A big fight in a cave system while a bad ass demon summoning is going on.
That’s not to say that there weren’t a few neat character moments. We learn a lot more about Thomas, Murphy, and Kincaid. Oh, and Dresden has a magic dog now.
One interesting thing that we really haven’t seen that much of prior to this is lasting consequences, other than the war with the Red Court. Things are changing in the Dresdenverse. The big example: Dresden’s hand. Smaller examples that I’m sure will mean more later: Dresden learns a lot more about his mother/family and about some of the more troublesome parts of the White Council (the Blackstaff). Slightly terrifying example: He Who Walks Behind .
My other favorite part of the Dresden Files in general and this book in particular:
“I put the ick in magic.”
“I the hell am Harry.”
“Proof is something you use with rational people. Right now you aren’t.”