With each book I wonder how in the world Butcher is going to top what just happened to Harry. But Butcher is great at coming up with new ways to torment Harry, so amazingly he does keep outdoing himself.
For the last book or so I've been speculating that part of Harry outdoing himself each time will probably include some personal growth in the magical abilities department.
In the first couple books Harry was able to handle anything that came his way. Sure, he almost got killed a few times, but in the end he was always clearly better than anything or anyone else that he faced.
Then we started to see others who are his equal, or perhaps betters that he defeated by luck/ingenuity...and in Summer Knight we found out that there are a bunch of wizards who are not only more powerful and more skilled than Harry, but who also speak Latin better. (And they're dressed better than him.) Then things gets worse in Death Masks when someone else has to come Harry's aid to save him from something that he was pretty helpless against.
Even though Harry emerges triumphant in the end of Death Masks, he's still weaker than some of those he's gone up against. Weak enough that he's had to stand aside and watch others rescue him at times. And although that's awesome (it wouldn't be good for Harry's ego to always be the best) I don't see someone always being there to rescue him when needed, especially since he keeps going up against worse and worse monsters.
Hence, my prediction that he's going to have to learn some more, become more skilled and perhaps more powerful as the books progress.
I realize there are currently 10 (11?) more of the Dresden Files books out. So no one tell me if I'm right. I'll find out by reading them, then probably revisit this post and see if I was right. :)
|Death Masks book cover|
By the way, I've already seen other forms of growth in the books. (And no I'm not talking about the sex scenes!) But that's a subject for another post.