Well, there is one more Harry Dresden book sitting on my shelf and I think that after that one I will call it quits. It's not that the Dresden Files are particularly bad – I have certainly read a lot worse – and it is not that they are all beginning to seem the same, it's just that I have probably grown out of this type of literature. I'm not saying that people who enjoy these books are immature – by no means – but I guess as I have grown older my taste in literature has changed somewhat, though I still have a number of 'popular' novels sitting on my shelf that I intend on reading, and I wouldn't mind getting a few more Forgotten Realms novels (though I am not rushing out the door, or scouring Ebay for them). However as I look at the collection of books on my shelf that are slowly diminishing (but not by much mind you, though I am trying to make a habit of buying less books than I am reading – though that is not necessarily what is happening with my 'To Read' shelf on Goodreads) there isn't really all that much room for never ending series.
So, I think I should probably say a few things about 'Small Favour' though I am finding it difficult to work out what to say without actually spoiling the book. Mind you, it is not really my intention to encourage anybody who hasn't read the Dresden Files to start reading them, and I would certainly not recommend that they start at this book (there has been too much going on before that you would probably be lost if you started this far into the series). I know that there are a few people out there that trash this series on the grounds that Harry Dresden is a womaniser, but I believe I have already said enough on that subject.
What I can say about this book is that the crime boss of Chicago, Johnny Marcone, has gone missing, and when Queen Mab appears and asks Harry to do her a 'small favour' we start off by thinking that this book is going to involve the <i>fae</i>. However, as it turns out, it doesn't (and by suggesting that, people who are familiar with the series, but have not read this book, would probably have already worked it out, if they didn't know already). Butcher also introduces some creatures named the gruffs, named after, surprise, surprise, the three bully goats gruff (yes, I thought it was a little lame as well).
However, this book was a lot less soap operary than some of the others (oh, Thomas, are you really my brother?), but on the other hand much of the book seemed to orientate around three major battles (not counting the one with the gruffs at the beginning). As such, it feels that there is a battle, a pause, and then another battle. Also, there seems to be a major influx of characters from other books, not that it was confusing, it just felt that there were quite a few characters all struggling with each other for a spot in the lime light.
In the end though, I must say that I did end up enjoying this book, but since this is book nine of sixteen, I'm not in any real rush to finish off the series (if it is ever going to end that is).