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I like big books.

First Lord's Fury (Codex Alera, Book 6)

First Lord's Fury - Jim Butcher Amazing!!!! This is my second favorite book series after The Dark Tower, and I'll put it coequal to the Potter series. Butcher writes fantasy that is fresh, intelligent, and new, yet full of the sense of camaraderie and adventure that made Lord of the Rings so memorable. The best part of it is, it doesn't feel Tolkein-esque. It feels like it's own creation, a piece of praise that cannot be garnered upon almost any other book I've read in the fantasy genre.

This last book in the series is the most action-packed, and I think I literally read most of it in like two sittings, with an agonizing break in between, during which all I did was think about where it was going and how the hell Tavi was going to manage the impossible. Butcher places his characters in desperate, unwinable scenarios, and I love the sense of fatalism and defiance that results from the stresses the characters endure, but most importantly, I love the intelligence with which Butcher and his characters craft their solutions.

This series is about mind over might, and wits and character over cold rationality and self-interest.

The last book in the series is filled with heart-rending sadness as admirable characters meet their ends and a sense of fulfillment as the characters you've come to love finally find justice, grow into maturity and create a world of their own. The attachment to them is so deep you tend to overlook the convenience in the way Butcher tidies up ALL of his plotlines, save maybe two minor points (poor Crassus!!!).

I look forward to the coming years, forgetting enough of the details of this epic, and delving in again!