Fool Moon Volume One (Dresden Files #2) by Jim Butcher

At this point, I think you know the drill: Fool Moon Volume One is the graphic novel adaptation of Jim Butcher’s Fool Moon, the second installment in the widely popular series The Dresden Files, a Ranting Dragon favorite. The adaptation is once again done by Mark Powers, but the artwork is done by Chase Conley who is best known for his work on The Wheel of Time graphic novels.

The supernatural has struck again, and Lt. Karin Murphy of the Chicago Police Department’s Special Investigations Unit calls in Harry. The body count is already high, and the FBI has shown up and is throwing its weight around. When one of Harry’s friends turns up dead shortly after Murphy witnesses an argument between them, things get personal.

Fresh interpretations
Conley’s art is markedly different from Syaf’s, who did the art for the first three Dresden Files graphic novels. So if you didn’t like how Syaf drew some of your favorite characters, this may be a welcome change. Overall, the lines are simpler with a little less Asian influence, and the colorist Mohan has given everything a much darker tone than in Welcome to the Jungle or Storm Front Volumes One and Two. I personally enjoyed this, as it make Fool Moon Volume One look a little more pulp noir, which is what I’ve always tagged The Dresden Files as being underneath all the snark. There’s a lot more nuance in Conley’s artwork; things are less stereotypical and flow really nicely. Conley is also really good at facial expressions, which really brings a character like Harry to life.

My major complaint about the Storm Front adaptation was the breakneck pace. This isn’t as much of an issue in Fool Moon Volume One. Powers has kept a lot of the smaller scenes, such as Harry’s conversation with the demon Chauncy. This helps break up the action and continues working on characterization beyond the bare basics.

More old/new friends
The major introduction here is the Alphas, a group of werewolves just getting their “adult teeth,” so to speak. My only complaint is that their appearance is for a literal single page. Susan also makes a quick appearance, as well as Gentleman Johnny Marcone. Conley is very faithful to the clothing descriptions made by Butcher in the original novel, details I loved.

Why you should read this book?
It’s a fun, quick read. Of all the graphic novels I’ve read for our Dresden festival, this is the one I enjoyed the most. At this point, I feel like the major issues from the previous three graphic novels have been solved enough to at least not be bothersome. However, there is no Fool Moon Volume Two; the continuation of the story currently exists only as single issue comics, and I am aware of no news on when they will be bound into a graphic novel. So if you want to see the second half of the story, you will have to buy them directly from Dynamite Entertainment or from your local comic shop.

About Janea Schimmel

Janea Schimmel
Janea is an avid fantasy reader who after college inexplicably found herself working in a library. She was the only one surprised by this strange turn of events. When not surrounded by books, she enjoys working on her own fantastical fiction (thereby restoring order to her universe by having a book nearby), as well as making music (clarinet, vocals, renaissance recorder), cooking, and honing various skills made obsolete by the industrial revolution.

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