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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These Are The Druids You're Looking For.
Looking for the perfect mix of humor and thrills with a twist? These are the Druids your looking for. Hexed and Hounded don't disappoint.

Hexed, the sophomore edition of The Iron Druid Chronicles, is nonstop fun and excitement. Atticus O'Sullivan is a modern day druid, the last of his kind. And lately the crazies have been coming out the woodwork. You would...
Published on June 10, 2011 by Kale

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19 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely not.
I've come to loathe this series. I found the beginning of Hounded to be slow but I was looking forward to Hexed. I then spent the entire first chapter of Hexed thinking "Wtf is this?" Here's a summary of how it starts: Atticus harasses, harangues, and otherwise preaches to Leif about how to use modern English.

It should be noted that in Hounded Leif spoke...
Published on February 24, 2012 by Minty.Green


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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These Are The Druids You're Looking For., June 10, 2011
Looking for the perfect mix of humor and thrills with a twist? These are the Druids your looking for. Hexed and Hounded don't disappoint.

Hexed, the sophomore edition of The Iron Druid Chronicles, is nonstop fun and excitement. Atticus O'Sullivan is a modern day druid, the last of his kind. And lately the crazies have been coming out the woodwork. You would think that defeating a couple of Celtic Gods, exorcising a few demons, and killing half a coven of witches would earn a guy some R&R. Think again. Tempting Tempe, Atticus' little Arizonian oasis is starting to look ripe for the picking to some pretty nasty supernaturals.

A brood of German witches kick off the shenanigans by trying to curse O'Sullivan and the local coven. The murderous attempt is quickly followed up by a demonic straggler left behind by Aenghus Óg. Hearne keeps the pace swift with a visit from Coyote, who informs Atticus of a fallen angel preying on some very unfortunate high school students. Then there are the clergymen snooping around his bookstore, and the cops that just won't go away. But the honey-do list just keeps getting longer since some sin city Bacchants are in town and ready to throw down. Let's Party.

It would be simpler to cut and run, but Atticus has decided that Tempe is home, and he has an obligation to heal the land his prior nemisis destroyed. He's going to have to get help from some familiar characters and strike a few ill advised bargains to get through the nine circles of hellion relatively unscathed, though not unmolested. By the end you'll be wondering which battle was more brutal, golems and demon spawn filled witches, or a tussle in the sack with the Morrigan.

Hexed like Hounded was a witty well written book. There were some serious storylines happening here that could have easily gotten confusing. But Hearne's clever writing allowed for clarity while navigating through the fast-pasted and complex threads. I highly recommend the audio version of this book. The narrator , Luke Daniels, is excellent. Daniels does all the accents spot on, and must be a linguist with how well he speaks all the foreign languages. He really brings the words and characters to life. I think Hearne's biggest strength is the diversity and knowledge in the cultures and supernatural beings. The books seem well researched and work well together.

Maybe it's just me, but I find the succession of this series each consecutive month refreshing. A throwback to the serials of not so long ago. Yet, because they're so good, I swear the wait is still excruciating. Keep Them Coming Kevin.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Druids can't jump", June 7, 2011
Those words uttered by Atticus O'Sullivan may be true, but Hexed proves that they can do just about everything else! It's not easy creating a second book in a series, and after enjoying Hounded so much, I was nervous that the author would not be able to sustain the high level of storytelling magic that was so captivating in Hounded. I needn't have worried. Hexed ably continues the tale, bringing Atticus into an uneasy alliance with the local coven of witches as they do battle against a group from Atticus' past that seek to encroach on his territory.

Atticus is in a rather strange position in this latest installment. His success against Aenghus Og has left him a marked man. Everyone is seeking him out to try and convince him to help them with their own God problems. The entire paranormal world now seems to have his number, which leads to some intense demon battles, some fierce sex, and a steep learning curve for his new apprentice. Most of the characters are back from Hounded, and we get to know some a little better this time around. The dialogue is as witty as ever, the action is true edge of your seat stuff, and Oberon is still enjoying his stories, with very entertaining results.

This continues to be a first rate urban fantasy series that any fan of the Dresden files will no doubt enjoy. It's a fast read that will make you hold your breath at the suspense and laugh out loud at the humor - sometimes on the same page! I'm off to go pre-order the next installment. First rate entertainment.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Doughty Druid, July 22, 2011
This book gets a steely 5 gnomes out of 5 gnomes for being a superb sequel, having laugh out loud writing, and characters that the reader can truly care about.

This series has become one of my top 5 series, I just love so much about it. The characters and story are refreshing because it has characters and themes that are common yet used in unexpected ways. Take religion, if you read this series you will see and hear about a plethora of gods and goddesses from across many cultures. I like that there are all these religious figures still out there in the world but some just appear more often than others.

The setting is the same as the previous book and you get to find out even more about the large cast of characters. I liked seeing more of Atticus's nighttime lawyer, Leif the vampire and Granuile his new apprentice.

The side characters in this book are fleshed out really well. The interactions between Leif and Atticus are great especially when he tries to help him with his word phrasing so he doesn't sound as old as he actually is. Granuile (who's name I can't for the life of me pronounce) is seen more in this book and shown to be quite savvy to all the weirdness of witches, police problems, and learning all manner of information on what druids can do. It would be interesting if Atticus and Granuile had a relationship because you can tell he's interested, on the other hand though Atticus has a well known weakness for pretty women and she is technically his student.

Many of the best lines in the book are said by Oberon, the Irish wolfhound. Seeing how he and Atticus interact is a lot of fun and also makes me hope that Kevin Hearne never has any plans to kill him off like so many other authors, movies, and TV shows do with beloved pets. I actually found myself tearing up a bit at the point in the book when you find out how old Oberon is and how much Atticus looks out for him.

If you thought Atticus had problems in in Hounded then you are in for even more carnage when you read Hexed. There's gods, goddesses, good witches, bad witches, a tall priest, a short rabbi, and even more magic and fighting. The book is also chock-full of humor, I actually had to stop reading the book at work because I didn't want people to think I was a weirdo laughing to myself all alone in the library.

The endings of this book and the one before it are great because they both end on a funny note. Ending at a funny line or situation is to me much more preferable and unexpected then having a cliffhanger that makes you want to throw the book out the window. Overall I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that likes fantasy, magic, or really stupendous male main characters. I for one am very happy that the third book has been released and plan to read it as soon as possible. I look forward to reading more about Atticus's world and whatever else Kevin Hearne writes in the future.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than the first!, February 23, 2012
Our favorite Druid is back, and this time with a coven of German witches spelling death at him!

How does he rise to the challenge? By creating a pax pact with other local witches, and going to war alongside a werewolf and master vampire. Death and destruction reign, you'll love it all!
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19 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely not., February 24, 2012
I've come to loathe this series. I found the beginning of Hounded to be slow but I was looking forward to Hexed. I then spent the entire first chapter of Hexed thinking "Wtf is this?" Here's a summary of how it starts: Atticus harasses, harangues, and otherwise preaches to Leif about how to use modern English.

It should be noted that in Hounded Leif spoke perfectly normal modern English. Suddenly in this book he's speaking archaic English and is mystified by Atticus's English lesson. Imo, it is not okay to blatantly change the basic foundation of your characters from one book to the next.

Moving on, I have trouble with the overabundance of super beautiful, perfect bodied, gorgeous haired women that seem to account for just about every female written into the books. It seems like an unnecessary amount of text is dedicated to Atticus's detailed fawning over women which just kills the flow. I fail to understand Granuaile's purpose, besides to let us read about baseball while Atticus is trying not to think pervy thoughts while he's ogling her. The focus seems to be on how much Atticus wants to bang her. Really I find the majority of Hearne's characters to be flat. I'm disappointed in the treatment of Coyote, whom Hearne describes as having two facial expressions. I see Coyote as an embodiment of unpredictability and I can't imagine him only having two facial expressions. I feel like this was a hugely missed opportunity. Basically, Hearne's Coyote seems really half-a**'d.

I find myself annoyed at the world building. It comes off as though Hearne decided to throw everything together in one world. Everything exists... but he's still trying to figure out how it all fits together so a lot of things just get glossed over and dismissed as magic. Or I feel like Atticus knows all about how things work but the reader doesn't get to be let in on the secret, if that makes sense.

Lastly, I can understand authors living a little vicariously through their books but Hearne over does it So. Much. Knowing that Hearne is an English teacher and reading about Atticus's fixation with proper English usage (plus the English nerdgasm in the 1st chapter), I am overwhelmed by the feeling that Atticus is merely an avatar for the author. This makes the high rate of perfect bodied women who want to get in Atticus's pants seem a lot like reading some guy's sexual fantasyland diary. For me this series has serious issues, especially the major alteration of a character from one book to the next. Sorry, I'm a stickler for operating inside the universe you create as an author.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A 21 Century Old Boy and His Dog..., November 26, 2011
By 
Jay (Houston, TX, United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This is the second book in the series.

Kevin Hearne is one of the best new authors I have come across in a long time. His series about a 21 century old Druid (the last of them) and his Irish Wolfhound in current-day Arizona is priceless. The droll timing of his humor vs. danger vs. politics is perfect. This is one of the best developed worlds I have seen in a long time.

There is a little bit of romance, but it is generalized enough for mature teens to not dwell on... too much :)

I highly recommend all three books in this series. If you have access to mp3 player or Audible, I would highly recommend that you listen to the books. The reader has all of the characters down just like I would think of them. His depiction of Oberon (the Druid's dog) is heart-lifting!

All the best,

Jay
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous Second entry in the Iron Druid Chronicles, July 20, 2011
Kevin Hearne's Hounded completely justified its hype and was a favourite of mine amongst this year's Urban Fantasy debuts. Not only did it liven up the subgenre's landscape, but it also announced Kevin Hearne as an author to watch. Now before I continue, just a warning: MILD SPOILERS are ahead...

Now for those who have read & enjoyed Hounded, you'll be happy to hear that Hexed features more of the same and then some. Starting out, the book finds Atticus relaxing after his victory over Aenghus Og, which finally freed him from his millennia-long vendetta. Because of his actions though, Atticus is flooded with offers by various pantheons to become a Godslayer for them and eradicate other deities. At the same time, Lief--Atticus' lawyer/sparring partner/vampire--wants him to help settle his debt to Thor, while the Polish witch coven of Radomila is interested in signing a non-aggression pact. Complicating matters even further is a demon last seen in the climax of Hounded; a hell minion who has been terrorizing a local school, which requires aid from the Irish widow Katie MacDonagh; a promise to Morrigan given in the previous book which puts Atticus in a difficult situation with the Tuatha Dé Danann; a group of German witches who are muscling in on the Polish coven and also targeting Atticus, while aided by Bacchants or Maenads from Las Vegas; and protecting his druid initiate, Granuaile MacTiernan.

As you can see, a lot is happening in Hexed, as the book continues to develop events and characters from its predecessor, while planting seeds for the next sequel and beyond. Based on what happens in Hexed, it's obvious that Kevin Hearne is planning some big things for the rest of the series--which is now planned for six volumes--as Atticus is forced to become a weapon/person that he doesn't want to be, which was a major plus for me to read about. In particular, I can't wait to see Atticus, Lief and other super-powered folk take on a certain Norse thunder god. Another thing I liked about the story was the way Atticus had to coax, cajole and bargain favors in order to get everything under control.

Writing-wise, prose is once again very polished and the action non-stop, while the banter between Oberon & Atticus continues to fuel the novel's comedic moments and making the non-action parts that much more enjoyable. Then there's Atticus who remains an engaging narrator, which is noteworthy because he easily could have come off as a pompous protagonist. Instead, due to the author's skill, Atticus is an intelligent, semi-rogue avant gardist with a wee bit of a chip on his shoulder, which he's entitled to. Atticus is also very aware of his long life and strives that much harder to make it smoother for himself and those he calls his friends. Speaking of which, Granuaile MacTiernan has been a minor character in the series so far, but I believe her role will grow in future volumes, while Katie MacDonagh has an interesting friendship with Atticus that I hope will be revealed in greater detail in the next chapter of the series. Lastly, there is a generous helping of Shakespeare in the novel which adds to the book's overall fun quotient.

Negatively, I remarked that Kevin Hearne's debut was a bit too PG-13 and formulaic, but in Hexed, the author seems to be heading in a darker direction as there are quite a few deaths. And while the book's plot remains familiar to urban fantasy veterans, Kevin Hearne is trying to carve his own path by precipitating events that readers would not normally see until much later in a series. So apart from some familiar elements within the story, I have no other complaints about the book.

CONCLUSION: Hexed is an excellent sophomore effort by Kevin Hearne who is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. In short, I highly recommend picking up the Iron Druid Chronicles, which just might make you forget about other urban fantasy novels...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oberon - and Kevin Hearne - both deserve a treat, June 27, 2011
By 
H. Bala "Me Too Can Read" (Recently moved back to Carson, California, or as I call it... the center of the universe) - See all my reviews
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A priest and a rabbi walk into a druid's apothecary shop... it sounds like the start of a joke but that's one of this book's plot points, and Kevin Hearne, new writer on the block, weaves it into the narrative and makes it make sense. HEXED is the sequel to HOUNDED in the hugely entertaining Iron Druid Chronicles, and it allows Hearne's constant readers to reacquaint themselves with the world's last remaining druid, Atticus O'Sullivan (not really his real name).

Atticus O'Sullivan thrives on being a chameleon, on blending into the woodwork, so you can't even tell he's over two thousand years old. Having set roots in Tempe, Arizona some years ago, Atticus could pass for a generously tattooed college student. Atticus runs an apothecary shop, and hopefully that explains away whatever offbeat vibe he does give out. Atticus strives to keep things on the down low, but he still has congress with others as paranormally inclined. And now that he's slain two deities, his magical street cred's on an alltime high, his much-cherished low profile out the window.

Only three weeks have elapsed since the epic throwdown in the Supernatural Mountains (in HOUNDED), and Atticus has been bedeviled by various pantheons and other supernatural agencies, come a-visiting to congratulate him on his mighty deeds and then to coax him into taking out this and that other supposedly deserving god. Not that it matters until the third book, but the god most often tabbed for a contract hit is the disagreeable Thor. Atticus is kept busy saying "Thanks, but no thanks." He's got enough on his plate.

He's in the middle of signing a pact of non-aggression with the local coven of witches. He's engaged in sort of a feud with his nosy neighbor. That old trickster Coyote (or one of several incarnations of him, anyway) has talked him into taking on a fallen angel from the Fifth Circle. A horde of demonic Bacchants are about to sweep into Tempe, and the local coven wants Atticus to do the dirty work. So now Atticus is fretting about cheesing off the Roman god of the vine (and debauchery). And because no urban fantasy is complete without witch on witch violence, a rival coven of witches is threatening to take over the town. See Atticus O'Sullivan prioritize. See him get pushed to the limit. See him panic a little, and then a lot. Harry Dresden's got nothing on Atticus O'Sullivan when it comes to a full day.

And Atticus's love life is rather horrible. He finds himself coveted by two feuding Celtic goddesses: his sometimes ally, the Morrigan, the humorless Chooser of the Slain, and Brighid, Celtic goddess of fire. This absolutely makes a case for online dating.

There's no dropping off point with HEXED. It's as good as HOUNDED. Kevin Hearne manages to do what Jim Butcher does so exceedingly well, which is toe the line between levity and suspenseful urban fantasy thriller. In HEXED, Atticus is again very funny, but his Irish wolfhound Oberon - with whom he communicates telepathically - is again funnier. Atticus's supporting cast keeps you invested, from the old, porch-sitting Mrs. Macdonagh to Atticus's new apprentice, the sexy Granuaile, to his two attorneys-on-retainer, Hal the werewolf and Leif the vampire (who also wants Atticus to kill Thor). Even Laksha, that ancient, deadly, body-swapping Indian witch, returns to answer Atticus's plea for help.. but for a price. They're not that tight.

I relish the world Atticus inhabits. This is the sort of place where, with Atticus requiring divine blessings on his weaponry, he suggests to a devout person - say, Mrs. Macdonagh - that she prays to the Virgin Mary. And, sure enough, Atticus later drives up to the most seedy neighborhood in Tempe and there's the Virgin Mary, conferring blessings on the criminal and the downtrodden. And I'll mention again how much I like the cross-polination of pantheons and how there could conceivably be different versions of any particular god. As Atticus explains to Leif: "We can invade Asgard, kill off Thor 1.0... we could come back here to Midgard only to have the comic book Thor smite the hell out of us..." I, for one, would love to see that.

Atticus is such a well-writen protagonist, and even though he drops one-liners like they were hot potatoes, he's a solid character and he grounds the story. The battles are fantastically staged, and this is coming from a guy who once thought that druids make for some of the most boring folks. But what other druid is this much of a wiseacre and wields an enchanted sword and steals his neighbor's grenade launcher to combat the forces of evil? Only Atticus O'Sullivan. Holler.

I'm sensing a pattern with how Hearne is titling his books. I'm guessing, after the third volume HAMMERED, the next one'll be called HAMPERED or HOTCAKED or maybe HADDOCKED.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Druid is back!, June 18, 2011
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The second book in the Iron Druid Chronicles begins three weeks after Hounded ends. Demons released by the bad witches in the last book need to be dealt with, a group of Bacchants come to town wanting to take over the territory, as do a group of demon-casting German witches who announce their presence by trying to kill Atticus using a spell from afar. The police have become suspicious of Atticus as he matches the description of a guy with a sword at different scenes, and a priest and rabbi are getting way too noisy. If that weren't enough, two goddesses want to claim Atticus as their own personal weapon.

The only Druid left in the world, all he wants to do is live a quiet life under the radar, grow the herbs he sells in his store, train his new apprentice and heal the large area of earth that was destroyed in the fighting from the last book. But demands from the coven of local Polish witches as well as Coyote, have him fighting to take out the escaped demons and destroy the others that have come to town to cause harm. And he's being bombarded with requests to take out Thor.

There's plenty of action, humor, negotiations, myth, history and even his hospitality is loaded with political fencing. I've got a better appreciation for his new apprentice, Granuaile as she proves to be quick thinking. And of course Oberon, Atticus' telepathic dog, gives us more comic relief as well as show us how much respect Atticus has for his dog's feelings and happiness.

What I like most about Atticus is that he's so earth based. His relationship and responsibility to nature make Atticus a large part of who he is. Having 2100 years of experience, I find his reasoning, manners and maneuvering when dealing with others in positions of power to be both clever and savvy while remaining respectful. His philosophy speaks to me. The mythology covers a number of different pantheons and the history in this book deals with WWII.

The only thing that could have made this a better book for me is if there had been a little more down time. Most of that involves being connected to the earth to heal. He is trying to teach his vampire lawyer, Leif, to change his old-world formal speech pattern to blend in better and does get in a small visit with Mrs MacDonagh, the only non-magical person who knows what he is. But other than that if he isn't ramping up energy and protection spells, negotiating, playing politics while being a host, being hounded by the police or the clergy, for the most part he's fighting. It can be a little exhausting, although the humor helps a great deal.

On the other hand the story wouldn't be as exciting if there was more down time.

The third book, Hammered, will be released in July.
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23 of 32 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Shallow, Boring, Not Worth The Time, December 23, 2011
By 
Regina "Regina" (Oak Park, IL, United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I listened to the narration of this book and did not finish the book. I stopped around chapter 13 or so.

Positives: The narration is decent. I liked the inclusion of Coyote. I think he is a great character. I enjoy his presence in other books by other authors, this one was not an exception. Atticus and Oberon are mildly entertaining. The scene where Oberon talks to Atticus about life and death and Atticus tells the readers that he has been artificially prolonging Oberon's life was very moving. This was the best scene in the two books I read in this series. Ultimately, this series is just not for me. I love urban fantasy and fantasy books. I enjoy male authored and male point of view books, but for me this book missed the mark. I am clearly in the minority.

Okay, on to the rest of my review: I thought this book suffered from the same issues I had with book #1: no emotional connection with Atticus, low cost to using his magic, everything comes easy for him.

I am not going to go into a lot of detail about this book, but here are some scenes that irritated me:

The scene in the beginning where his assistant answers the door scantily clad is just beyond silly. First, no woman who was not purposely trying to entice would answer the door dressed like that. Let me make it clear -- I have no problems with purposely trying to entice, titillating scenes or scantily clad women. It was the delivery of this scene I thought was off. Once Atticus is conversing with her, his apprentice is apparantly clueless as to the affect of her near nakedness and continues to wonder out loud why Atticus is uncomfortable and looking up in the air? Umm, any woman knows immediately when a man is reacting to her appearance in such an obvious way! Sorry Kevin Hearne, women don't answer the door dressed like that generally and usually don't go to bed wearing such an outfit unless there is a specific man present they want to please. I hope this doesn't disappoint you too much. I know the general style of humor he was attempting here -- oblivious sexy woman doesn't understand her effect on man, walks around in sexy nighties just waiting to answer the door for men who ring it. I just thought it was not very believable. And because of that I couldn't enjoy it.

Atticus verbally attacks a teacher who calls out and wonders what is going on, no animosity in her voice - he is fighting a demon near the school. Atticus then proceeds -- out of nowhere and completely disconnected with the scene - to attack the teacher for not teaching the children English well enough. So here we have someone he apparently does not know, we have had no information or discussion of poorly prepared students in the subject of English presented in this book thus far. Then Atticus says to himself, "I need to shut up and stop taking my frustrations out on this poor frumpy lady who probably never gets laid." Huh? Just random attacking of teachers based on assumptions, criticizing their appearance and then making assumptions that they don't have sex because her appearance is not pleasing to him? I really don't have a problem with "frumpy" as a description, but when it is contrasted with how he describes almost every other woman in the story and we don't get to know anything else about her appearance (mousy limp hair maybe? Don't know, not in the description. Slack ill fitting clothes? Don't know, not in the description. All he says is "frumpy" which I guess means he doesn't want to have sex with her and thus he assumes she is not getting laid very often, because you know if Atticus doesn't want her she isn't getting any. What if she has a husband or wife somewhere she has spent her life with? I know I am getting deep here and humor was intended. I just don't think it is funny to make jokes about innocent bystander's appearance. It really rubs me the wrong way.) I know the humor he was going for, but it just came off the wrong way. I think that if he also described men as frumpy or had provided more of a decription of this woman beyond "frumpy" and had not equated her being frumpy with not having sex, I likely would not have had an issue. For me it was the delivery e.g. -- I find her unattractive, I will dismiss her completely and assume that no other man wants her. I honestly don't think this is the way most men think.

I won't be reading or listening to Hammered, #3 in this series.
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