- Title: Hounded
- Author: Kevin Hearne
- Series: The Iron Druid Chronicles #1
- Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
- Format: eBook
- Source: Own Copy
- Reviewed by: Sonja
- Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Description: The first novel in the original, six-book Iron Druid Chronicles—introducing a cool, new, funny urban fantasy hero
Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old—when in actuality, he’s twenty-one centuries old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer.
Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he’s hounded Atticus for centuries. Now the determined deity has tracked him down, and Atticus will need all his power—plus the help of a seductive goddess of death, his vampire and werewolf team of attorneys, a sexy bartender possessed by a Hindu witch, and some good old-fashioned luck of the Irish—to kick some Celtic arse and deliver himself from evil.
Review: This book really rates probably about 3.5 stars. And, it may actually be 4, but for the “expectations” scale. That is, based on the reviews, I expected more from this book than it delivered to me. My mind frequently wandered, and that is never a good thing. The druid based magic system was very intriguing. I really liked the tattoo idea and the relationship to the earth. The logic and reasoning for the final battle also felt very in character and I do not think I would have accepted any other argument. I am still a bit confused as to the gods and goddesses and fae and Tuatha De Dannan and how they relate to each other. (I also appreciated the author’s presentation of Irish pronunciations – and his permission to pronounce any which way I chose.)
As a dog lover, I adored Oberon. Was it a little over the top? Maybe. But, I didn’t mind. Unfortunately, Atticus’ relationship with Oberon is really the only ongoing “relationship” in the story – I really missed an emotional connection to any other character in the book. I strongly suspect this is to be corrected in the next book as some seemed to be being set-up in this novel – obviously the first in a series. That being said, he is very kind to the old widow down the street – and obviously cared – but it is a very peripheral relationship.
And, the contemporariness of Atticus bothered me. Here is this thousands of years old druid – yet he talks and acts as if he really *is* 21. I certainly understand the need for him to blend in with others his apparent age, but I should still think that there should be some age and wisdom visible to the reader – and there really is not. In addition, his reaction to every female in the novel was on a visceral level, as if there were no other reason to relate to a person of the opposite gender.
I did enjoy this book. I certainly did not feel myself immersed in his world. I did feel like it was setting up characters for more novels. As such, I am undecided as to whether or not I actually cared enough to see where they go: part of me thinks there is so much more to Atticus and part of me really wonders.