Codex Alera

The Codex Alera is a six book series by the author of the Dresden Files, Jim Butcher.  Despite my fondness for the author, this was another series that had a number of false starts before I finally got into it.  There are a few reasons for that, but one in particular stands out.  Furies of Calderon (the first book) was the first published book from Jim Butcher that wasn’t in first person.  It’s told from a limited third-person perspective, which is actually a very common perspective for formula fiction (at least the formula fiction I have experience with outside Urban Fantasy).  The problem was that every time I started to understand what was going on, he’d shift perspectives to a completely different character in a completely different place doing something completely different.  Every time that happened, I’d get confused, and have to go through the whole mental world building process all over again.  That’s not a unique problem for limited third-person books.  In fact, it’s rather common, but it had been so long since I had read such a book that it took a while to get back into that sort of mental flow.  But, that’s really only a problem with the beginning of the first book.

Once I finally did get into it, the series turned out to be really fun and enjoyable.  It’s not on the level of the Dresden Files, nor is it as awesome or well told as Mistborn.  It’s just a really fun series that gets better with each book.  The fact that it’s six books long made for a really fun week and a half at work.

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