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Book Review: Turn Coat

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Turn Coat, by Jim Butcher

Turn Coat is the eleventh book in the Dresden Files series, written by Jim Butcher.  The book follows Harry Dresden, a modern-day wizard fighting crime in Chicago, and his adventure proving the innocence of his most hated Warden while discovering the White Council turn coat.

Warning!  Spoilers follow here.

The book starts with Harry opening his door to find Morgan standing there asking for his help.  Morgan has been wrongly accused of killing a fellow warden and asks Dresden to help prove his innocence.  Dresden takes him in, cleans him up, and proceeds to watch over him for the next 48 hours — how much longer Morgan’s veil against the people looking for him will hold up.  Morgan swears he is innocent and woke up in the deceased’s room holding a bloody knife with no recollection of how he got there.  He believes the traitor, who has been feeding information to the enemy for several books, framed him to take the attention off himself while he continues to feed information.  Dresden runs with that idea and seeks out to discover the traitor.  Along the way, Dresden is stalked by a skinwalker — an evil spirit who can take any form.  When Dresden looks upon the skinwalker with his Sight, his mind is nearly disabled at how powerful the being is. He arrives at Will and Georgia’s apartment to take shelter and recover from the vision.  The skinwalker follows him and instigates a fight with the Alphas.  Kirby is killed and Andi is severely injured.  The skinwalker flees.  Dresden, Molly, Thomas, and Morgan attempt to hide in a storage unit.  Binder, a British foe who can conjure these weird gray beings, is introduced and tries to take out Dresden before he can find out anything else regarding the traitor.  Binder, as we later learn, is working with Thomas’s cousin Madeline in cahoots with the traitor.  While Dresden is fighting Binder, Thomas gets snatched by the skinwalker.  After enlisting the help of Murphy and a private investigator named Vince on a side mission, Dresden returns to Demonreach — the island from the previous book — to take everyone out at one time.  The Raiths come with him to aid in the fight.  He brings out the Council, by telling them he has Morgan in his possession, the skinwalker, on the grounds of a swap (Thomas for Morgan), and Binder and Madeline by bringing the Raiths along for the fight.  A huge fight ensues, and the skinwalker shows up toting Thomas.  He has scarred Thomas and turned him into a primal beast.  Listens-to-Wind helps Dresden fend off the skinwalker.  Lara Raith takes Madeline out and Dresden lets Binder go under the agreement to never do business again.  The wardens take Morgan back to Edinburgh to hold his trial and prove him guilty.  At the trial, Dresden uses photos from Vince to reveal that Peabody, the secretary for the Council in Edinburgh, is the traitor.  Peabody enchanted the ink he uses to write with, and when others also wrote with that ink, he harnessed power over them and could control them psychically.  He psychically controlled Luccio to kill the warden, but Morgan made it look like he did it because he loves her and didn’t want her to take the fall.  After a short chase, Morgan kills Peabody and then dies.  Ebenezar walks Dresden back to Chicago and the idea of the Merlin being in on the Black Council comes up.  Dresden decides to team up with Eb and a small group of others to fight against everyone, calling themselves the Grey Council.  The book wraps up with Dresden finally getting to see Thomas since his kidnapping.  Thomas is different and stoic.  After a cold meeting, Dresden assures Thomas that he’s still here for him.  Dresden brings Butters to Will and Georgia’s for game night, which Kirby always held before his death, and they begin a new game.

Where the hell do I start.  I hate what happened to Thomas.  He’s my favorite character.  That shit better get fixed.  The fact that Luccio’s love for Harry was all a result of the mind control was some BS.  The guy just can’t catch a break.  We still know nothing about Michael’s condition from the previous book.  The idea of the Merlin actually being bad is very intriguing, but I don’t see a motive for it.  I do like the secret Grey Council, though.  In the book, it’s mentioned that because Luccio gained a new, younger body she is now receptive to Peabody’s mind control, which is most effective on young people.  I find this a little weak because even though her body is young, her mind and soul isn’t.  I don’t think it should have been that easy to control her. Maybe she wanted a part of it; maybe she’s bad, too.  I never liked her.  Morgan didn’t deserve to die.  He was like the Snape of the Dresden universe.  I give this book a 4/5, because, while gripping, the ending made me feel so much like the HIMYM finale.  So much development to be torn down so quickly.

For Next Time

Changes, by Jim Butcher

Long ago, Susan Rodriguez was Harry Dresden’s lover—until she was attacked and left struggling with the bloodlust of the vampiric Red Court. Now, she needs Harry’s help. Harry’s enemies have found the secret she has hidden for so long, and he will have to unleash the full fury of his untapped power.


One response »

  1. Pingback: Book Review: Skin Game | Frazzled Editor

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