Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Book Review: Hammered by Kevin Hearne

Author: Kevin Hearne
Series: The Iron Druid Chronicles (Book 3)
Publication: Del Rey (July 5, 2011)

Description: Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is worse than a blowhard and a bully—he’s ruined countless lives and killed scores of innocents. After centuries, Viking vampire Leif Helgarson is ready to get his vengeance, and he’s asked his friend Atticus O’Sullivan, the last of the Druids, to help take down this Norse nightmare.

One survival strategy has worked for Atticus for more than two thousand years: stay away from the guy with the lightning bolts. But things are heating up in Atticus’s home base of Tempe, Arizona. There’s a vampire turf war brewing, and Russian demon hunters who call themselves the Hammers of God are running rampant. Despite multiple warnings and portents of dire consequences, Atticus and Leif journey to the Norse plain of Asgard, where they team up with a werewolf, a sorcerer, and an army of frost giants for an epic showdown against vicious Valkyries, angry gods, and the hammer-wielding Thunder Thug himself.

My Thoughts: HAMMERED was another excellent addition to the Iron Druid Chronicles. In this episode, Atticus needs to keep his promise to Leif and get him to Asgard where he can finally take his revenge on Thor. Now, Atticus has gotten all sorts of good advice from both Jesus and the Morrigan who tell him that this is a major bad  idea. But Atticus has given his word.

Along with Leif and the werewolf alpha Gunnar are three other supernatural beings who also have a need for revenge against Thor. They include an Asian named Zhang Guo Lao, a Finnish semi-forgotten god named Vainamoinen, and a Russian thunder god named Perun. In a somewhat Canterbury Tales mode, we hear each of their stories about their reasons for wanting Thor dead.

I am always amazed and informed about various world mythologies when I read this series. The juxtaposition of characters out of legend with current culture makes these stories amazing. This is probably the first time I have ever gotten an ear worm from reading though. Atticus walks in on two frost giants making love and quickly needs something to erase the image from his mind. He chooses to focus on It's a Small World After All which he says is one of the most annoying songs ever. I agree!

This is also a story that begins lots of changes for Atticus. He will have to run and hide to avoid the ire of the rest of the gods. He spends time saying goodbye to his life in Tempe. He is leaving with not much more than his apprentice and his dog. His leave-taking brings up one of the downsides of a really, really long life. People you love don't live forever and every loss brings pain.

This is an excellent series for fans of urban fantasy. It just keeps getting better and better. I can't wait to read more.

Favorite Quote:
It used to be so easy for me to run, to care about nothing but myself and the earth underneath my feet. That had been my modus operandi ever since Tahirah died; I never stayed anywhere long enough to be bound by commitments, never entangled myself with the lives of others, and told myself it was all about avoiding Aenghus Og. That was more true than I realized: What I'd truly been avoiding was love, the strongest binding there is, and the pain that scrapes at your insides when the bond is forcefully broken.

It has been more than five centuries. I still miss her. She smiles in my dreams sometimes and I wake up weeping for the loss.
I bought this one on July 7, 2011. You can buy your copy here.

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