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Hounded: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book One…

Hounded: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book One (edition 2011)

by Kevin Hearne

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1,4211575,316 (3.97)234
Title:Hounded: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book One
Authors:Kevin Hearne
Info:Del Rey (2011), Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Science Fiction, Iron Druid, WLS, RBU

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Hounded by Kevin Hearne


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Atticus O'Sullivan appears to be a twenty-one year old, tattooed Irish guy living in Arizona running his own occult bookshop. And that's what he wants you to think.

Actually the last of the Druids and tens of centuries old, Atticus is hiding from Aenghus Og. Depending on which of them you ask, Atticus either stole or relieved Aenghus Og of his magic sword. Aenghus Og, despite being the ancient god of love, doesn't have particularly loving ideas in mind when it comes to getting it back - or what to do to Atticus.

In the meantime, Atticus plans to spend his days running his bookshop, staying hunder Aenghus Og's radar, shapeshifting into a hound to hunt with his Irish Wolfhound, Oberon . . . and the occasional dealings with witches, goddesses (including the Morrigan).

He's going to need the help of all of them - including the vampire and werewolves he's come to know through their legal expertise, a bartender, a Hindu witch in possession of someone, and maybe even the tough Irish widow down the street - when Aenghus finally tracks him down after centuries and comes for the sword.

Hounded is, I believe, the first book I've read where the character was a Druid - at least a real one. The secondary characters this introduces as well as the actions taken by Atticus because of this make Hounded different right from the beginning.

Having so many different supernatural characters - witches, werewolves, vampires - also a part of the story was a nice change of pace from most urban fantasies (at least that I've been reading) where there will be one or two beings and the others won't exist or won't be a part of the characters world.

One thing that I didn't know about until I started Hounded and worked for me in the audio version but may not for everyone (and may be different in print), Atticus can communicate telepathically with his dog. Oberon's not like Chet in the Chet and Bernie Mysteries, either. He doesn't lose his train of though or get distracted by sausages, have random word associations, ignore halves of conversations, etc. In other words, Oberon doesn't think the way you'd expect a dog to - or doesn't talk to Atticus the way you'd expect a dog to.

Their conversations are pretty human-like. Oberon's very easily excitable like a dog, has an interesting fascination with Genghis Khan and French Poodles but his sentence structure, etc is more human. On an audiobook, however, it's more than amusing.

The thing I'm still unsure about with Hounded is the female characters. The witches seemed to be looked at negatively and are trouble. The goddesses are naked, looking for sex, having it, etc. The Morrigan is supposed to be scary, intimidating. Naked women can be intimidating, but that wasn't the case in Hounded it felt like they were there to be sexy, be hot . . . and then maybe fulfill any other role. I'm hoping Hearne's portrayal of the opposite sex (at least the 'attractive' ones - he did very well with Widow MacDonagh - though she's not supposed to have sex appeal) improves as the series continues.

As an audiobook this was enjoyable. Later in the book a few of the characters did sound somewhat similar, but the action was enough that it was always possible to easily tell the characters apart. (And Oberon's voice was, of course, great fun.)

Rating: 6/10

You may also enjoy: Storm Front (Harry Dresden #1) - audio of this series is win!! by James Butcher and Odd Thomas (Odd Thomas #1) by Dean Koontz
  BookSpot | May 18, 2015 |
This was fun, and a very imaginative mix of ancient and new. Although there is plenty of action, it didn't just feel crash, bang, wallop - our druid has lots of deep motivations for what he does. Recommended. Terrible cover though. ( )
  Matt_B | May 1, 2015 |
What I find most satisfying about Kevin Hearne's work is the way he treats his women characters. They are full-blown people. Not just wimmens to be gawked at. Hearne does not flinch from giving the pretty ones awful traits, nor does he keep the not-so-pretty ones from being beautiful people. He does not deny the deep sexual attraction Atticus can have to some of them (magically induced or not) but he gives reason for Atticus to act (or not) on those impulses. There's a lot of talking about baseball when Atticus is trying to concentrate on staying focused. This is not to imply that Atticus is a horn-dog or that there's a lot of sexual tension going on. There's not, but when it moves the plot forward, Hearne is not shy about allowing his characters to feel what would be natural. ( )
  AuntieClio | Mar 6, 2015 |
This review is also published at http://thebookaholiccat.com

Hounded is book one of the Iron Druid Chronicles series by Kevin Hearne.

Atticus O’Sullivan is a 2100 year old druid (yes, you read right 2100!) who looks like a 21 year old college kid. He is the owner of a bookstore/apothecary in Temple, Arizona. Atticus chose Temple as his perfect place to live because of its low magic population.
Atticus has been on the run since he took possession of a magic sword, infuriating a Celtic god over a millennia ago. Aenghus Óg hasn’t forgiven Atticus and wants to recuperate the sword no matter the consequences or means necessaries to obtain it.
But now things are different, Atticus is tired of running, he likes his life, his job and his new friends and is willing to finally affront the consequences of his actions. Atticus knows he has become very powerful over the years and a match against Aenghus Óg will be an even match. Atticus is also not alone, he has friends he can count on when the need arise.

Hounded is one of the best urban fantasy books I had read this year and one of the few books I have read from a male point of view. Sometimes is difficult for a female reader to connect with a male character, especially when the book is written by a man. This was not the case with Atticus in Hounded. Mr. Hearne writes Atticus so well and so real that soon he becomes your buddy and you are cheering for him page after page wanting him to succeed in his endeavors.

Atticus may be old as dirt, but he has learned to blend so well with his surroundings that just in rare occasions he feels his real age. Atticus is sexy, strong, wise and with a great sense of humor. He also has unlimited stamina thanks to his magic, nice! I picture him exactly as the model in the cover… what can I say… Can I have him?

The secondary characters in Hounded are all great, unique, varied and fun. From vampire, gods, goddesses, witches, to widows, werewolves and more. But Oberon, Atticus’ Irish wolfhound steals the spotlight. I loved that he can communicate with Atticus. Oberon is a smart dog who can maintain a conversation and I loved that despite this he still thinks and behaves like a dog. His fixation with French poodles, sausages and Genghis Khan was completely hilarious.

The world created by Mr. Hearne is very inventive and interesting. Not all the characters are new, Mr. Hearne “recycle” old and known deities in a very smart way, giving them a fresh feeling. I loved how so many different characters intermingle in a very creative and extraordinary way.

Hounded is non-stop, page turner book, packed with action, intrigues, manipulations, humor and witty remarks; with great characters and a very well developed plot.
I loved the unconventional references used by Mr. Hearne. Who could thing think that Shakespeare and Star Wars could fusion so well in a story.

Hounded is one of those books that you won’t be able to put down until you reach its last page, and when you do reach it, you will start looking for the next installment, Hexed, because you loved Hounded so much that you would want to continue reading more about Atticus and his friends, and this is not because Hounded ends in a cliff hanger, because it doesn’t, it is just because Hounded was so good and you loved it so much and found it so refreshing from other books that you will crave for more of Mr. Hearne’s words.

I recommend this book to all urban fantasy lovers or anyone who is willing to give a chance to a good and different book.

I won this book in a giveaway organized by The Qwillery. Mr. Hearne was so kind as to sent me a signed copy. YAY! Thank you Sally “Qwill” and of course, thank you Mr. Hearne.

I can’t wait to read Hexed and its following installment Hammered that will be available next Tuesday July 5, 2011. ( )
  BookaholicCat | Mar 4, 2015 |
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was a little heavy on the eco-friendly message, but that could be expected from a main character who claims to have been soul bonded to the life force of the planet itself. The characterization was good, the mythology was believable. The interplay of the people was well-scripted. ( )
  Curiosity64 | Feb 25, 2015 |
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Kevin Hearneprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Daniels, LukeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mollica, GeneCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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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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