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Brief Cases
Cover of Brief Cases
Brief Cases
An all-new Dresden Files story headlines this urban fantasy short story collection starring the Windy City's favorite wizard.
The world of Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, is rife with intrigue—and creatures of all supernatural stripes. And you'll make their intimate acquaintance as Harry delves into the dark side of truth, justice, and the American way in this must-have short story collection.
From the Wild West to the bleachers at Wrigley Field, humans, zombies, incubi, and even fey royalty appear, ready to blur the line between friend and foe. In the never-before-published "Zoo Day," Harry treads new ground as a dad, while fan-favorite characters Molly Carpenter, his onetime apprentice, White Council Warden Anastasia Luccio, and even Bigfoot stalk through the pages of more classic tales.
With twelve stories in all, Brief Cases offers both longtime fans and first-time readers tantalizing glimpses into Harry's funny, gritty, and unforgettable realm, whetting their appetites for more to come from the wizard with a heart of gold.
Collection includes:

A FISTFUL OF WARLOCKS (from Straight Outta Tombstone, edited by David Boon), read by Cassandra Campbell
B IS FOR BIGFOOT (from Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron, edited by Jonathan Strahan), read by James Marsters
AAAA WIZARDRY (from the Dresden Files RPG), read by James Marsters
I WAS A TEENAGE BIGFOOT (from Blood Lite 3: Aftertaste, edited by Kevin J. Anderson), read by James Marsters
CURSES (from The Naked City, edited by Ellen Datlow), read by James Marsters
EVEN HAND (from Dark and Stormy Knights, edited by P. N. Elrodread), read by Jim Butcher
BIGFOOT ON CAMPUS (from Hex Appeal, edited by P. N. Elrod), read by James Marsters
BOMBSHELLS (from Dangerous Women, edited by George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois), read by Julia Whelan
COLD CASE (from Shadowed Souls, edited by Jim Butcher and Kerrie Hughes), read by Julia Whelan
JURY DUTY (from Unbound, edited by Shawn Speakman), read by James Marsters
DAY ONE (from Unfettered II, edited by Shawn Speakman), read by Oliver Wyman
ZOO DAY (original), read by James Marsters
*The author's note that precede each story will be read by the author.
An all-new Dresden Files story headlines this urban fantasy short story collection starring the Windy City's favorite wizard.
The world of Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, is rife with intrigue—and creatures of all supernatural stripes. And you'll make their intimate acquaintance as Harry delves into the dark side of truth, justice, and the American way in this must-have short story collection.
From the Wild West to the bleachers at Wrigley Field, humans, zombies, incubi, and even fey royalty appear, ready to blur the line between friend and foe. In the never-before-published "Zoo Day," Harry treads new ground as a dad, while fan-favorite characters Molly Carpenter, his onetime apprentice, White Council Warden Anastasia Luccio, and even Bigfoot stalk through the pages of more classic tales.
With twelve stories in all, Brief Cases offers both longtime fans and first-time readers tantalizing glimpses into Harry's funny, gritty, and unforgettable realm, whetting their appetites for more to come from the wizard with a heart of gold.
Collection includes:

A FISTFUL OF WARLOCKS (from Straight Outta Tombstone, edited by David Boon), read by Cassandra Campbell
B IS FOR BIGFOOT (from Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron, edited by Jonathan Strahan), read by James Marsters
AAAA WIZARDRY (from the Dresden Files RPG), read by James Marsters
I WAS A TEENAGE BIGFOOT (from Blood Lite 3: Aftertaste, edited by Kevin J. Anderson), read by James Marsters
CURSES (from The Naked City, edited by Ellen Datlow), read by James Marsters
EVEN HAND (from Dark and Stormy Knights, edited by P. N. Elrodread), read by Jim Butcher
BIGFOOT ON CAMPUS (from Hex Appeal, edited by P. N. Elrod), read by James Marsters
BOMBSHELLS (from Dangerous Women, edited by George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois), read by Julia Whelan
COLD CASE (from Shadowed Souls, edited by Jim Butcher and Kerrie Hughes), read by Julia Whelan
JURY DUTY (from Unbound, edited by Shawn Speakman), read by James Marsters
DAY ONE (from Unfettered II, edited by Shawn Speakman), read by Oliver Wyman
ZOO DAY (original), read by James Marsters
*The author's note that precede each story will be read by the author.
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Excerpts-
  • From the cover A Fistful of Warlocks

    Some stories happen because a writer gets inspired by some wild idea that needs expression. Some stories are carefully put together as part of a greater whole.

    And some stories you write because a professional friend asks you if you want to contribute to an anthology, and it sounds like a really fun idea. This is how the next tale was born-I needed a weird, weird West story so that I could contribute to Straight Outta Tombstone.

    The upside of putting this project together is that the late-nineteenth century was largely a blank slate in the universe of the Dresden Files, so I was able to do whatever I wanted without being restricted by the 1.5 million words of story that had already been written. The downside was that the late-nineteenth century in the universe of the Dresden Files was largely a blank slate, so I had to start figuring out how to braid this story thread in particular into the greater story.

    One of my go-to concepts when writing earlier eras of any story is to focus on characters who are the passionate young hotheads in any given setting-those are the people who generally provide me with the most interesting choices and stories. So, for this story, Anastasia Luccio fit the bill perfectly, and I've always loved the character and wished she could have more stage time. I worked out her early history as a young Warden and decided that she had been instrumental in the White Council's decades-long war with, and victory over, the greatest necromancer of the previous millennium.

    This is the start of what is now in my head a four- or five-book story all its own. I don't know that I'll ever get to write that tale of dark old Western supernatural horror, featuring Anastasia as the magical and gun-fighting protagonist, flanked by such figures as Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday of the Venatori Umbrorum, but it's a hell of a good movie in my head.

    So maybe imagine as you read this next piece that the movie begins here. . . .


    The American West was not the most miserable land I had ever traveled, but it came quite near to it. It was the scenery, more than anything, that drove the spirit out of the body-endless empty plains that did not so much roll as slump with varying degrees of hopelessness, with barely a proper tree to be seen. The late-summer sun beat the ground into something like the bottom of an oven.

    "I grow weary of Kansas," said my not-horse. "The rivers here are scarcely enough to keep me alive."

    "Hush, Karl," I said to the nacken. "We are near to town, and to the warlock. I would prefer if we did not announce our presence."

    The nacken sighed with a great, exaggerated motion that set the saddle to creaking, and stomped one hoof on the ground. With a pure white coat and standing at a lean and powerful seventeen hands, he made a magnificent mount-as fast as the swiftest mortal horse and far more tireless. "As you wish, Anastasia."

    "Warden Luccio," I reprimanded him tartly. "And the sooner we catch this creature and his master, the sooner you will have served your probation, and the sooner you may return to your homeland."

    The nacken flattened his ears at this reminder of his servitude.

    "Do not you become angry with me," I told him. "You promised to serve as my loyal mount if I could ride you for the space of an hour without being thrown. It is hardly my fault if you assumed I could not survive such a ride under the surface of the water."

    "Hmph," said the nacken, and he gave me an evil glare. "Wizards." But he subsided. Murderous monsters, the nacken, but...
About the Author-
  • JIM BUTCHER is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Dresden Files, the Codex Alera, and the Cinder Spires novels. He lives in Independence, Missouri.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 7, 2018
    This entertaining collection assembles 11 reprints and one brand new novella, all set in the world of Butcher’s popular Chicago-based wizard PI, Harry Dresden (last seen in 2014’s Skin Game). In a trio of lighthearted Bigfoot-centric stories, Harry helps out an erudite Sasquatch named River Shoulders on behalf of his half-human son, Irwin. In “Bombshells,” Harry’s apprentice, the quick-thinking Molly Carpenter, goes up against a powerful foe (while wearing a little black dress, no less), and in “Even Hand,” Harry’s sworn enemy, dapper crime boss John Marcone, takes drastic steps to protect an innocent child. The Wild West–set crowd-pleaser “A Fistful of Warlocks” features White Council Warden Anastasia Luccio, who teams up with Wyatt Earp to put a stop to some very dark deeds. The standout is the tender original novella, “Zoo Day,” in which Harry takes his 10-year-old daughter, Maggie, to the zoo. First they encounter a young warlock in need of Harry’s help, and then Maggie is attacked by a group of haunts. This collection mostly serves to whet longtime fans’ appetites while they wait for the next full-length installment, and newcomers will find little of interest here.

  • AudioFile Magazine The narration of James Marsters anchors a dozen short stories from the long-running Dresden Files fantasy/mystery series, that recounts the adventures of a wisecracking Chicago wizard. Not for unfamiliar listeners, the short pieces span 15 novels and abound with spoilers. The stories feature Dresden and/or his allies grappling with Wild West wizards, Bigfoot's son, Lovecraftian horrors, and more. Marsters's narration continues to capture the spirit of the novels superbly, while the other narrators pale in comparison. Author Jim Butcher narrates one story and compelling prefaces before each of the stories, but even he can't surpass beloved series regular Marsters. A strong thematic connection running throughout elevates the collection beautifully. J.M.M. � AudioFile 2018, Portland, Maine
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Brief Cases
Brief Cases
Jim Butcher
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