Ghost Story (The Dresden Files)

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Ghost Story
Ghost Story Butcher.jpg
AuthorJim Butcher
Cover artistChristian McGrath
CountryUnited States
SeriesThe Dresden Files
PublisherRoc Hardcover
Publication date
July 26th, 2011
Media typeHardcover
Preceded byChanges 
Followed byCold Days[1] 

Ghost Story is the 13th book in The Dresden Files, Jim Butcher's continuing urban fantasy series about Chicago wizard Harry Dresden.[2]

Plot summary[edit]

Immediately following the events of Changes, Harry finds himself between life and the afterlife, where he is informed that there has been an "irregularity" with his death and is given the option to return to Chicago as a spirit and find his killer. He elects to return and heads to the house of an ectomancer who could communicate with ghosts, Mortimer Lindquist, whom Harry had maneuvered into helping him in the past. Harry finds out that he has been dead for six months, and as a spirit, both his access to his magical powers and his ability to interact with the normal world are greatly compromised. Mort initially refuses to aid Harry, but after Harry helps to defend the house against an assault led by a powerful spirit-like entity, Mort reluctantly agrees. Mort and Harry go to Murphy's house, and Harry is subjected to intense questioning by many of his friends and colleagues to verify his identity. Once satisfied, Murphy explains to Harry that the destruction of the Red Court created a worldwide power vacuum, allowing a group called the Fomor to rise to power.

The next night, Harry returns to Mort's to find that the house has been destroyed and Mort has been abducted. Harry tracks down Mort and finds him trapped by the spirit of the Corpsetaker, a previously slain foe of Harry's who is torturing Mort in an attempt to "take" his "corpse" (i.e. replace Mort's soul with the Corpsetaker's own). Harry summons the army of spirits that sheltered at Mort's, storms the hideout through the Nevernever, and takes down the wards, allowing his allies to physically assault the hideout. Harry returns to confront the Corpsetaker only to discover that she has consumed all of the spirits involved in the assault, increasing her power and giving her the ability to physically manifest - and the ability to steal a body, which she promptly does in the form of Butters. Molly attacks the Corpsetaker, who responds by entering her mind in an attempt to steal her body instead. Harry is quick to follow.

Molly and the Corpsetaker wage a pitched battle for Molly's mind as Harry seeks out Molly's mental command center. He finds it, and in the process unlocks a memory of his own. During Changes, Harry realized not only that he would have to become the Winter Knight in order to save his daughter, but also that Mab would then turn him into a monster. To prevent this from happening, Harry contacted Kincaid and arranged for his own assassination. In order to prevent Mab from discovering this plan, he then had Molly remove the memory of it.

With Harry having remembered the true events that he arranged, Uriel appears and explains that a fallen angel interfered with Harry's death by whispering a lie to him at a critical moment, which motivated Harry to carry out his planned suicide. The fallen angel's direct influence permitted Uriel to respond in kind, allowing Harry to come back and learn the truth. Uriel then offers Harry the choice to come to work for him, or continue on to What Comes Next. Harry demands to see how his loved ones fare in order to make an informed choice. Uriel complies, showing Harry that Molly was successful in defeating the Corpsetaker with Mort's help, that Maggie has been lovingly adopted by the Carpenters, and that Harry's other loved ones are safe and well. Satisfied by what he sees, Harry elects to move on.

He awakens on Demonreach Island, where his body has lain in the care of Queen Mab and the spirit of Demonreach for the past six months. Mab is simultaneously angry and pleased by Harry's attempt to shirk her service, and tells Harry to prepare himself for her to turn him into her creature. Uriel takes this opportunity to officially balance the scales, whispering to Harry "Lies, Mab cannot change who you are." Harry realizes the truth of this and tells Mab that he will be her devoted knight but will carry out her orders in his own way, and will not permit her to turn him into her monster.

Introduced characters[edit]

  • Evil Bob: Revealed later in the book to be the part of Bob that Harry ordered him to lock away in Dead Beat - the only way for Bob to do as such was to amputate that part of himself; Evil Bob is the knowledge that Bob removed.

Ghost Story in other media[edit]

  • Jim Butcher announced on his website on June 27, 2011[3] that James Marsters, who had previously recorded all the Dresden Files novels in audio book form, would be unavailable to record Ghost Story. He was replaced by John Glover.
  • On March 24, 2015, four years after John Glover's narration of Ghost Story was announced, Jim Butcher disclosed that a new release of the Ghost Story audio book would be made available. In a response to fan requests and to bring continuity to the listening experience, James Marsters would narrate this new audio edition. On the day of its release, on April 21, 2015, the John Glover narrated edition would be retired.[4]
  • This book is available as an e-book in Kindle and Nook formats.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Twitter / Jim Butcher: After that, some short pie". 2011-04-03. Retrieved 2012-02-10.
  2. ^ "Ghost Story (The Dresden Files #13)". Good Reads. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
  3. ^  Posted by priscellie at 8:50 pm (2011-07-26). "AAAA News". Jim Butcher. Retrieved 2012-02-10.
  4. ^