So the last novel in Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files that I wrote up was Changes, which means three more novels have come and gone since then. Since we’re looking at books 13-15 in an ongoing series, I’m not going to talk about the individual plots at all, as anything I can say is a spoiler for the earlier books. But I will say that the series continues along reasonably satisfactorily—it gets maybe a bit darker than I would prefer at times, but never unreasonably so, considering the scope of the events taking place. If you’ve been reading the books, nothing here is likely to drive you to stop; if you haven’t, nothing here would induce you to start.

But whether or not you’ve read Butcher, you might want to check out Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series. Like the Dresden Files, it’s urban fantasy, but set in London rather than Chicago, and featuring a police officer (working out of the special semi-secret magic unit), rather than a private investigator. The books are very well-written, have an enjoyable tone, and feature a sense of place that seems more definite than Dresden’s very un-Chicago Chicago—though to be fair, I don’t really know London at all, so maybe it reads totally off to actual Londoners.

My only concern with these books is that while they do have individual per-book plots, there’s a lot of inter-relation between the books, and significant characters and events that carry through, and I feel like I’m increasingly likely to be missing large swaths of the next one. I don’t quite think they need to fall into the “wait until finished, read whole series at once” bucket, but they’re only as standalone as late Dresden, nowhere near as much as early Dresden.

Either way, that’s not a huge criticism, and if you like urban fantasy but bounced off Butcher, or if you like Butcher, Aaronovitch is definitely worth trying.


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