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Hounded by Kevin Hearne
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Hounded

by Kevin Hearne

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Iron Druid Chronicles (1)

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1,7191894,127 (3.95)255
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English (195)  Piratical (1)  All languages (196)
Showing 1-5 of 195 (next | show all)
So good. reminiscent of Dresdan Files but 200X's better. ( )
  mystic506 | Sep 3, 2016 |
I kind of loved this when I read it a couple of years ago. I tried the audiobook for the second book and was driven off by Luke Daniels's rendition of Oberon. Recently I (shall we say) came across Hounded in audio, and decided to give the medium another shot. While I tolerated the Oberon voice better this time around (I'll come back to that), unfortunately I enjoyed the book less.

See, I love Harry Dresden. Really, really love. Like hands-clasped hearts-in-eyes "My hero!" love. And one incident not too far into Hounded illustrated very clearly why I don't and will never feel that way about Atticus O'Sullivan. The Morrigan, with a fine disregard for 21st century proprieties is confronting him in his store, stark naked. Two frat boys straggle in hoping to score some pot, see a beautiful naked woman, and react in the only way stoner frat boys could possibly react. The Morrigan takes offense at their temerity and issues their death warrant. Atticus mildly tries to derail her vengeance, but she is set on killing those who dared look upon her and make note of her nudity, and he gives a mental shrug. Oh well. Guess they'll die. And that's the end of that episode. Now, unless I'm gravely mistaken, that is not how the story would run if it was Harry and not Atticus by-standing; I can't believe Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden would not have found a way, some way, to save the two morons, however undeserving they might be – and however much of his own blood and pain it might cost him.

I can't help being judge-y about a great and powerful druid whose two thousand years have honed him into a really very self-serving and self-centered person.

It was also a little troubling that he takes moral objection to Laksha's nasty habit of bumping souls out of their bodies – it's terrible and unforgivable – but the slightly eye-widening body count he racks up is perfectly fine. He excuses it at some point by pointing out that his druidic beliefs include reincarnation – killing someone just ensures that they'll be moving on to their next life that much sooner. But Laksha's faith says much the same thing.

Good lord, werewolves in this universe can't control themselves better than to just change in front of a muggle? That's pathetic.

I did very much like "Shut up. I'm Irish." But I was otherwise not nearly as favorably impressed by Hearne's take on Irishness this time around. Yeah, Atticus O'Sullivan is not one of my favorite people right now.

And, sadly, neither is his hound Oberon. I loved him to pieces when I first read the book, as most people seem to. This time I had a harder time reconciling the not-quite-smart but very-much-not-stupid dialogue assigned to him with the fact that he's an adult Irish wolfhound. It made me a little queasy, actually – what did Atticus do to him to make him this way? At times he came off as a child, irrepressible and sometimes silly; at times he came off as much more intelligent, pulling out references that seemed unlikely, and providing tactical and philosophical insight; then a little while later he'd be making me cringe again with his obsession with Genghis Khan. I didn't remember the inconsistency in his portrayal, but it felt glaringly obvious this time. And the whole French poodle fixation was nauseating. That little tag at the end in which he gets his surprise made me surprisingly – well, again, queasy. That's kind of my takeaway from Oberon this go-round: deep uneasiness.
Not to mention that this time round I was for whatever reason less forgiving of what was basically a ripoff of H. Beam Piper's Fuzzies, in which adorable furry teddy-bear-appearing sentient [sic] creatures develop obsessions on historical figures and throw themselves into recreating those figures as accurately as diminutive furry creatures can.

The narration by Luke Daniels was excellent – mostly. Accents, and voices young and old, male and female, stoner and werewolf and goddess – all well done. But you know what I still hated? Oberon. Every single time he voiced a line from the wolfhound I expected it to end with a "Ruh roh, Raggy!" or a full-on silly Don Messick Scooby giggle. This might have had a lot to do with my Oberon issues described above – but not everything.

Some books you just want to read over and over, and love more with each revisit. Some books, apparently, should be read only once. ( )
  Stewartry | Aug 28, 2016 |
As a fan of Dresden Files and a mythology buff, I was recommended this series more times than I can count. On top of that, my very noticeable Irish blood in my genes had my friends practically shoving this down my throat. "You'll LOVE it! It is right up your alley!" And I wish it was.

Let me start off with I didn't manage to finish the book. I have spent the past 2 months trying to finish this book. It wasn't that the book was hard to read or anything like that (on the contrary it is a light read), I was just so uninterested. Instead of slowly getting to know the characters and watching them develop, we get a massive dump of information and get reminded every few paragraphs how fantastic our protagonist is from the very beginning.

Since this series is so often compared to the Dresden Files (which I'm going to say now and state that I have a lot of issues with that series and it is far from perfect, but I still enjoy it despite this), let me just say why this fails compared to it on a protagonist level. Harry Dresden is a flawed character. He has a good amount of power, but he often has to rely on friends and he messes up a lot. He is relatable and we feel his struggles and ambitions with him. He grows and changes. Our Druid here instead is just Mr. I Am Perfect In Every Way. There is apparently nothing he can't handle. Now you'd think, "well yeah, of course he has to be. He is older than even Jesus!", but that doesn't make him an enjoyable POV to read from. Not only that, but he is a major ladies man that can even get goddesses in bed with him (not to say Harry doesn't get some ladies, but seriously. You'd think this guy was the last man on the planet. We know he is apparently the last Druid, but come on now). In a more comedic story, a protagonist like this can work, but here it is more annoying than anything else. It is a constant, "Let me remind you how awesome I am." flow through the book.

Now on to the info dumps, I understand that with a series that involves practically every mythological pantheon that you're going to have to explain some things in case your readers are unfamiliar with such topics. However, it goes beyond that and about every bit of backstory our Druid has is told by him to someone else and he talks for paragraphs. These aren't enjoyable to read and makes me feel the author is incapable of giving us his backstory in any other way, or any other back story for that matter. These scenes are boring and are a big no-no in writing. You might as well have him sitting at a cafe in the beginning and telling a stranger his life story.

Finally, the plot itself....shallow. Which is to be expected from a lighter novel. However, considering the lack of proper character development, it makes the plot's shallowness even more apparent and disappointing.

I wanted to like this so much. It has so many elements that I like and I would think I want together, but here it's just a bland read. Instead of reading about important events and back story and experiencing it, I'm being told it in massive quantities. I want to like the protagonist, and in many ways I do, but his lack of proper flaws (being easily seduced is not a proper character flaw, it's a quirk.) keep me from seeing him more than "Mr. Perfect and Overpowered".

Maybe one day I'll try to give this series a shot again, but for now, I just can't see why people find it so grand. ( )
  FairestEve | Aug 24, 2016 |
It's an interesting premise, but I distrust the power curve, and the protagonist comes across as...aware of his own greatness. ( )
  cjrecordvt | Aug 13, 2016 |
Kevin Hearne's Iron Druid Series is really a lot of fun to read.  Without putting in any spoilers, I think Oberon is hysterical!! ( )
  winterslights | Jun 12, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 195 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kevin Hearneprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Daniels, LukeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mollica, GeneCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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There are many perks to living for twenty-one centuries, and foremost among them is bearing witness to the rare birth of genius.
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Book description
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.

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Atticus O'Sullivan, the last of the Druids, finds his peaceful life in Arizona shattered by the arrival of an angry Celtic god who wants Atticus's magical sword, forcing Atticus to call upon some unlikely allies for help.

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