Dresden Files

Malcolm Dresden

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This article is for the stage magician. For the wizard, see Harry Dresden.

Malcolm Dresden is a human male, the father of Harry Dresden and husband to Margaret LeFay. He is mentioned in Storm Front.


Malcolm Dresden worked as a stage magician who would put on old-fashioned shows. He had a black top hat, a white rabbit, a basket of swords, etc. He'd travel around the country performing for kids and old folks. He died young due to a brain aneurism.[1]

Harry said he was a good and generous man, more than he could afford to be, and he was a hopeless loser, never having much to give to his family.[1]

Ebenezar McCoy described him as, "A man. A mortal, without powers, without influence, without resources. But a man with a good soul like few I have ever seen". [2]

Malcolm had promised Harry he'd be his assistant, but died before fulfilling the promise.[1] He taught Harry one of Houdini's first rules: the means to escape is always within reach—positive attitude.(reference needed)

The Lea stated that she thought Harry favors him.[3]

He was acquainted with DC (David Copperfield) from the SAM when both were at a similar point in their careers.[4]


Malcolm Dresden makes an appearance in Dead Beat during a dream of Harry's. The dream comes after beginning to read the book of the Erlking Harry procured from Bock Ordered Books and defended from the necromancer Cowl. During the dream the two make allusions to "Through the Looking Glass," the sequel to "Alice in Wonderland." The dream begins with Harry awakening next to a campfire to see his father seated on the other side. Malcolm Dresden speaks to Harry and lets him know that he is real and not simply an illusion in Harry's mind. It is presumed that due to the proximity of Halloween and the turmoil stirring up the veil between the Nevernever and the real world that his father is being able to communicate with Harry. Malcolm also alludes that he is only able to speak to Harry now because "others have crossed the line." Malcolm speaks with love and affection for his son assuring him that he is not alone. He also explains that Harry has more to lose now than he ever has because he has a brother, and friends whom he loves.[5]

During the dream Harry sees the tops of trees being taken down and hears a "creature" in the forest. His father explains that it is a "Jabborwocky" but alludes that Harry really knows what it is (the fallen angel Lasciel). Malcolm also assures Harry that he is a good man and has what it takes to keep control over his life. Malcolm then states that it is time for him to go and ruffles Harry's hair which makes Harry say to himself, "for that brief second I was a child again, [...] utterly certain of my father's strength." After saying his goodbye and ruffling Harry's hair Malcolm says, "Sleep. I'll keep the fire lit until morning," after which Harry enters a peaceful sleep for the rest of the evening.[5]

Malcolm later makes an appearance at the end of the book at Harry's grave where they discuss Cassius's death curse. Malcolm reminds a dejected Harry that "everyone dies alone. That's what it is. It's a door. It's one person wide. When you go through it, you do it alone. But it doesn't mean you've got to be alone before you go through the door. And believe me, you aren't alone on the other side."[6]


He met Margaret LeFay and married her, and they had a son. Struggling to support his family, he was often traveling, and was not present at the birth of his son and death of his wife. He arrived more than a day after Harry's birth. He named his son Harry Blackstone Copperfield after the three stage magicians: Harry Houdini, Harry Blackstone, and David Copperfield. He then took his son with him on his travels across the country.[1]

Malcolm died in his sleep one night; his six-year-old son, Harry, found him cold and smiling. The cause of death was stated to be an aneurysm.[1]

In the seriesEdit

Storm FrontEdit

Main article: Storm Front

In Storm Front, he's remembered by a depressed Harry walking the streets of Chicago.[1]


See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

Harry Houdini

Harry Blackstone

David Copperfield

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