That's a nice change, because I didn't bother to finish the three books I started previous to this one. I just didn't care enough to stick with them. I'd thought maybe I was being a book grouch again, but having enthusiastically plowed through this one I'm ready to blame my lack of interest on the books.
Reading this one made me think back to when these stopped being standalone novels. There's been a gradual shift from self-contained stories to stories that centered around reoccurring characters and that relies heavily on knowing their history. Sure, each minor reappearance is followed by a paragraph explaining who that person is and why they matter, but that's not particularly elegant.
Still, the book has a lot of what makes this series hum. The lead, the supporting cast, the wonderful pacing, the pyrotechnic kabooms... it's all great fun.
What's also interesting is contrasting it with the TV show. Even though I enjoy the books more than the show, there's something very powerful in the changes they made for it. Especially Bob. TV-Bob is a way more interesting character than book-Bob, which is no big deal, because the TV show uses Bob in a very different way.
Also, watching the show,it's easy to forget how powerful Harry is in the books. He's pretty much a powerful Champions blaster character with no movement power. On TV he's a detective who uses magic instead of forensics.
Okay, that's not always the case, but it is often enough. (Note to self: think about CSI: Earthsea, or CSI: Avalon or something). He has his shield bracelet which barely saved him from a single gunshot once, and he has his drumstick, which I don't think he's ever used, and he has his hockey stick, which he's used to blast people sometimes. It's all detective-analogs for evidence kits and guns (well, except the shield).
The best thing about the TV show is the cast, really.
Okay. I'm done talking about this one. It's a good book in a good series. If you've read the other eight, check this one out, too.
 I'm sure someone has already done this years ago.