The Dresden Files: Ranking all the stories that appear in Brief Cases

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“Even Hand”

“Gentleman” Johnnie Marcone is completely human. That does not stop him from taking a walk on the supernatural side as Chicago’s premiere crime boss. His narration is dry and witty, and it shows that our crime lord does still have some rules and standards.

It’s also the most ultimately menacing story just due to its ending  — but we’ll leave you to read for yourself and figure it out.

“Day One”

Waldo Butters: Medical examiner. Polka and Star Wars enthusiast. Paladin player.

… Knight of the Cross and action hero.

“Day One” dives in to what it means to wield a sword like Fidelacchius when you don’t think you’re really cut out to be the wielder of Fidelacchius. I will freely admit that Butters is one of my favorite characters in a series that’s full of some of my favorite characters, so to read this story is a delight anyway. But Butcher, here, is wrestling with the nature of the Swords and the Knights more than he did even when Harry had them in his safekeeping.

“Bombshells” / “Cold Case”

If I’ve just said that Butters is one of my favorite characters, how I can I place stories ahead of “Day One”? Simple: there are two Molly Carpenter stories here. “Cold Case” is the superior of the two, as it lets us visit Molly as she adjusts to her new status as Winter Lady, but “Bombshells” doesn’t slouch far behind.

As promised, “Cold Case” gets particularly cold, but what else would you expect from a story that features Mab so heavily?

“Zoo Day”

The only new work in this collection, “Zoo Day” ends the story, and it saves the best for last. Told by Harry, Maggie, and Mouse in that order, it shows how a simple trip to the zoo can turn complicated in three very different ways.

Honestly, Harry’s and Maggie’s sections are particularly great on their own, but then Butcher turns his attention to Mouse. Mouse, in case you’ve somehow forgotten, is a dog. Granted, he’s a magical dog, but he’s still a dog.

This could have gone very, very wrong.

But it does not go wrong. Instead, it goes very right. Good dog, Mouse, and good work, Jim Butcher.

Next: 7 things to look forward to while reading Save the Date

Which is your favorite story from Brief Cases?