Bob is a spirit of intellect bound to a human skull. He acts as Harry Dresden's assistant and living encyclopedia of magic. He first appears in Storm Front.


Bob is a magical construct, created in the middle Ages by Etienne the Enchanter, and intended as a repository of magical knowledge, something which Harry Dresden.[2]

In the seriesEdit

Bob appears alongside Harry Dresden throughout most of his adventures, providing assistance and friendship along the way.[3] Having been an assistant and adviser to wizards since the Dark Ages[4], he passes through the hands of a numbers of people, including Heinrich Kemmler,[5] Justin DuMorne[5], Harry Dresden and Waldo Butters.[6]

Concept and creationEdit

Bob started off as an inside joke between my writing teacher, Debbie Chester, and myself. I needed a device to get the rules of magic across to my readers, so that they would have a point of reference for the laws of my story world. I talked with Debbie about maybe designing a character whose fundamental function was to have conversations with Dresden about the nature of magic, so that the readers could all understand what was going on. “Sounds fine,” says Debbie. “But whatever you do, don't create some kind of talking head.” In story craft terms, a talking head refers to a character whose purpose in life is to dispense information. Talking heads will wander onto the page, blurt out exposition without bothering to display much in the way of character or motivation, and promptly exit. So when I designed Bob, complete with his little obsessions and quirks, I decided to make him a literal talking head, while avoiding the traits that add up to a story-craft talking head.Jim Butcher on his inspiration for writing Bob[7]

The idea of the skull itself was inspired by the Scooby Doo splash screen.[8]

Word of JimEdit

Jim Butcher has stated that that Bob takes on some of the personality of his "master", explaining that he is such a smart aleck and into girls because Dresden picked him up when he was just 16.[9]



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