For a 2,000-year-old Druid, Atticus O’Sullivan is a pretty fast runner. Good thing, because he’s being chased by not one but two goddesses of the hunt - Artemis and Diana - for messing with one of their own. Dodging their slings and arrows, Atticus, Granuaile, and his wolfhound Oberon are making a mad dash across modern-day Europe to seek help from a friend of the Tuatha Dé Danann. His usual magical option of shifting planes is blocked, so instead of playing hide-and-seek, the game plan is...run like hell.
Crashing the pantheon marathon is the Norse god Loki. Killing Atticus is the only loose end he needs to tie up before unleashing Ragnarok - AKA the Apocalypse. Atticus and Granuaile have to outfox the Olympians and contain the god of mischief if they want to go on living - and still have a world to live in.
©2013 Kevin Hearne (P)2013 Random House Audio
"An exciting mix of comedy, action, and mythology... [Atticus] is one of the best main characters currently present in the urban fantasy genre." (Fantasy Book Critic, on Tricked)
"Superb...eminently readable...plenty of quips and zap-pow-bang fighting." (Publishers Weekly, on Hounded)
Not content with having read the book, I also had to listen to it. Usually, if I like the book in one form, I like it equally well (or nearly so) in another. This, however, was not the case this time. I still love the book. But I have issues with the narration.
Hunted, by Kevin Hearne, is the sixth book in the Iron Druid Series. It's an action-packed run-for-your-life tour of Europe. Atticus and Granuaile should definitely have taken a cruise, or something relaxing. I'm pretty sure as honeymoon's go, this wasn't the best choice. Not that they had any choice in the matter.
Atticus O'Sullivan, the 2000-year-old last of the Roman Druids is running top speed across Europe. Romania, Germany, Holland, France ... then swimming the English channel to get to the woods by Windsor Castle. This is not exercise -- it's survival -- and as he (Granuaile and Oberon) race, they are fending off two angry, homicidal Olympian goddesses -- Artemis and Diana. And as experienced hunters, they are formidable adversaries.
Atticus messed with Bacchus and put him on a slow time island. Although it was self-defense, the Olympians aren't interested in why. They are just pissed off. Actually, more than that, watching the druids try to outrun the goddesses has become a sporting event for a wide range of deities.They don't seem so upset about Bacchus as they are eager to kill Atticus as well as Granuaile and Oberon. Freeing their crazy family member and co-deity is not their biggest issue.
The usual ways open to Druids of shifting to the safety of Tír na nÓg, are closed. Every tree and grove is guarded. The old ways are locked tight -- leaving them running long, hard, and fast in whatever physical forms and using whatever magic they can. They no longer have Morrigan's help, though they get some assistance from other immortals.
It does seem that just about everyone and everything is out to get them. Old enemies and new, vampires, gods and goddesses, dark elves, and some weird things who fit no category. Sea monsters. And Loki's on the loose bringing Ragnarök with him. The world is going to end. That's sort of Atticus' fault. Sort of. Sides are forming up for the big battle at the end of the world -- Ragnarök - the Apocalypse -- is it the end? Of everything? Could there be a new beginning? It's never happened before, so who's to know?
No one's banking on anything but death and destruction, so avoiding it as long as possible seems the sensible choice.
Sensible isn't part of the equation anymore. No one wants to negotiate, no one feels like chatting. It's kill or be killed. It's magic, weapons, a race to find a safe haven -- hide and seek along the way. No matter where they go, what they do, the Druids and all of their allies -- and enemies -- know the big finale is unavoidable. It will leave no one untouched. Meanwhile, the goal is to stay alive.
Atticus and Granuaile have almost no time in this book -- to my disappointment -- to develop the relationship they began after Granuaile was finally bound to Gaia and became a full Druid. There's no time now ... and given the perils, there may never be time. Not enough, anyway. A day, a few hours, grabbed here and there. This couple is not going to get that leisurely honeymoon, unless you count touring Europe in various forms - stag, horse, sea-lion, sea otter, falcon, mountain lion, wolfhound -- and of course, invisible. Most of the time, naked, a traditional form of battle dress for Celts, but not romantic.
Luke Daniels, the narrator is skilled and he does a fine job with Atticus and Granuaile ... and all other humanoids, but I really disliked his voicing of Oberon. It sounded like Bugs Bunny and was, to my mind, definitely unsuitable for the great wolfhound. I let it slide by me, but every time the voice came one, I got annoyed. I also didn't like his voicing of a bunch of the other secondary characters. Fine on the two Druids, but not fine on the others. Fortunately, there's more good narration than bad ... but be warned: if you don't like the idea of a dumb sounding Oberon with a lisp or cartoon deities from various pantheons, you won't like this audiobook.
This is the most high-speed book of the series to date. I had hoped for more character interaction and a bit less breathless and perpetual motion. If you like action -- and who doesn't? -- there's more than enough fighting, battling, scheming, running, swimming, dying, recovering -- but not much conversation. No down time. Not much relationship development. The book is a bridge to the next. Which is necessary. But you won't get resolution, not yet. Next book soon please!
It's beautifully written (as always). This is the first book in which Granuaile has her own voice. She's a full character now, co-equal with Atticus. Chapters alternate in the first person, her speaking, him speaking. At first, it jarred me a little, but then, I liked it. Nice to have both a male and female primary character in a fantasy novel. I can't remember if I've ever read a book in this genre where both sexes had equal roles. It takes a bit of getting used to, but it's all good.
I'm not going to give anything away. No spoilers, sorry.
If you are a fan of the series, you will like the book. It's probably not quite what you expect, but it's a critical link for what's coming.
It's Granuaile's coming of age -- and in its own way, also Atticus' coming of age. Although you would think he's seen it and done it all in his very long life, not so. He hasn't had a lot of human friends, much less lovers. There's a lot of new stuff for him to work his way through. Having a real relationship with a human woman requires relearning old habits. Like any relationship, come to think of it.
There are a lot of plot twists. Not all endings are happy. There are victories and temporary wins. Holding actions. I'm not sure there are solid victories to be had as the world draws ever closer to Ragnarök. It's all about survival, treachery and slippery alliances. The fate of the world hangs on a razor's edge. See you next book!
If you have not read the previous books, don't start with this one. There is a lot of history and the characters have all been built through the entire series. They won't make sense without the earlier books.
The book is also available in paperback and on Kindle. And, obviously, as a download from Audible.com. This is the first of the audio versions I've read. I don't know that I will try another. I think I'll stick with printed words for this series.
Read all the previous books in the series and enjoyed them enough to keep coming back. This will be my last. It was not good at all. So much worse than the previous installments.
There is no story here. He is chased across europe by a a pair of olympic gods who are beaten and respawn multiple times. Various other enemies randomly pop up for battles along the way. They get where they are going take a vacation and it's over. Nothing much happens. Nothing is resolved. We don't even find out who is the mastermind behind it all. It was boring , though short, and extremely disappointing.
Oberon has become nail gratingly annoying and now in about every scene. I used to like the small bits of dog comic relief but in this book Oberon just irritates. I was hoping he would get killed off.
Speaking of, the best character in the series does get killed off in a very sudden and unspectacular manner. Why? Don't get it.
There is just no reason to read any more of these for me. Another reviewer was correct, Dresden is a far superior series. Those books just keep getting better.
The Iron Druid books are out of gas as far as I'm concerned.
Likes to listen while doing chores; likes to write reviews while he should be doing chores.
I've dutifully dropped credits on all the issues of this series so far and been generally satisfied. The action has remained strong, the magical intrigue among the various pantheons is getting stronger and the the story, as always, is well paced.
I plan to keep reading this series, but I am noticing a growing problem with Atticus, the main character. Hearne is trying hard to drive the quips and jokes through pop culture references mostly told by the Iron Druid himself. This is getting more and more forced and I think it is starting to eat the core of the main character.
Atticus is supposed to be a 2000+ yrs. old druid with the wisdom of years and a pressing concern with preserving the health of the earth, self-preservation, and passing his knowledge on to his protege, not to mention spending quality time with his dog. He has a lot on his mind. He (including his internal monologue) talks like an idle twentysomething who spent the last three years in front of his computer all day ritualistically refreshing buzzfeed and quickmeme. Up to now, I had generally liked the way he had made such references, but now it's getting too thick. It's fantasy, and it's ok for a character from a different era to dig Coen Brothers' movies. Just don't overdo it and it will be fine.
I loved Luke Daniels' narration. It was PERFECT! Flimsy plot/storyline. same old , same old. We've seen this in EVERY book of (Iron Druid). No character development AT ALL!! I just don't care about them anymore.
No. Just this series.
I would NOT read these ; only listen to with Luke Daniels.
Yes, it was quite short. However, I certainly do not think it's worth the $19+
Very disappointed. It's like the author just gave up! And so will I.
This is my favorite series right now. I cannot wait to see what Ragnarok and the Norse pantheon will throw at our heroes. I am saddened by the death in the beginning but excited by the two new characters introduced at the end. The bit where Granuaile gets her own chapters is a little weird, but I get why. I wonder if it will be the same in the next book. Luke Daniels is the perfect narrator for these books. He is pretty much spot on all the way through. Awesome addition to the series, but it just makes waiting for the next installment that much harder.
The characters are wonderful and Oberon continues toke me laugh out loud unexpectedly. Has a very sweet epilogue to this installment, as well.
Thanks so much Kevin Hearne for sharing your talents with us! Luke Daniels surely brings the books to life!! As I read the Facebook comments on Kevin's page I only hear Oberon's voice by Luke Daniels. Terrific job you guys!!!
After struggling a little bit with the constrained feeling of Trapped (which I realize was appropriate, given the title), Hunted sucked me into the story and got me feeling “back to normal” with the series. For most of the book, Atticus, Oberon, and Granuaile are making a mad dash across Europe on foot, Atticus and Granuaile in their hooved shapes. I did wonder, a time or two, what was feeding energy to Oberon. I know Atticus and Granuaile receive energy from Gaia through their tattoos, but was the same happening for Oberon? Can a wolfhound sustain that kind of running for that long? I also panicked thinking that Oberon might be lost in the waters of the Channel. Yep, I am one of those people who are more concerned about the welfare of animals than people most of the time.
I thought my heart was going to break when Oberon and Granuaile thought Atticus was dead. The despondency in Oberon, and then his eulogy to Atticus, about killed me. Thanks for that, Kevin! I don’t think I had cried reading the series until this point, not even at the death of the Morrigan, though that made me very sad.
A couple of things surprised me, though they reveal more about me than the book: first, that big box sporting goods stores are so prevalent in Europe; and second, that Granuaile’s voice would be SO lyrical and poetic. Now that Granuaile is bound to the earth, we get to “hear” things from her point of view.
The snark and jokes, especially from Oberon, are hilarious as always: The “Hump Me Oberon” doll; the Princess Bride reference; the bribing with Girl Scout cookies; the bits about human mating rituals being stupid. The descriptions of the Greek gods and the conversation with Zeus and Jupiter are fantastic and funny. The banter between the characters, especially Oberon, is so entertaining that it alone would keep someone coming back to the series. I’m thankful I’ve listed to all the books rather than read them; Luke Daniels does such a great job with all the voices, but Oberon in particular. It has to be much funnier to hear the banter than to read it.
The ending, though… It frustrated me. Most of the book seemed to be about running from the Olympians (with dark elves and vampires thrown in for good measure). The major encounter with the Olympians ends somewhat early in the book, and then there is this bit where Atticus goes in search of Lord Grundlebeard and Midhir. He find them both dead, but that’s the end of that bit. There were never any answers about who killed them. Then Atticus and co. go off to see who the Morrigan left on the Time Islands, but we don’t learn that person’s identity, either (though I guessed it). The ending didn’t feel like an ending, really. The major story ended, and then a couple more bits were tacked on, but without any resolution. I get that these bits will be important in the overall series arc, but I guess they just seemed oddly placed. Did I not have Book 7, Shattered, to jump right into, I think I would have been highly irritated.
In any case, I still liked the book and thought it was a great adventure. I’m invested in the characters, now and want to see them succeed. They keep getting into deeper and deeper trouble, however; at this point, I’m just hoping they survive!
The main characters are chased across multiple countries and hunted by several gods. One god is no more, but her reason isn't fully revealed. Did she give up or did she put up a good fight.... Recommend the series.
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