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Hexed (Iron Druid Chronicles Series #2)

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Overview

BOOK 2 IN THE IRON DRUID CHRONICLES

————————————————————————

Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, doesn’t care much for witches. Still, he’s about to make nice with the local coven by signing a mutually beneficial nonaggression treaty—when suddenly the witch population in modern-day Tempe, Arizona, quadruples overnight. And the new girls are not just bad, they’re badasses with a dark history on the German side of World War II.

With a fallen ...

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Hexed (Iron Druid Chronicles Series #2)

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Overview

BOOK 2 IN THE IRON DRUID CHRONICLES

————————————————————————

Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, doesn’t care much for witches. Still, he’s about to make nice with the local coven by signing a mutually beneficial nonaggression treaty—when suddenly the witch population in modern-day Tempe, Arizona, quadruples overnight. And the new girls are not just bad, they’re badasses with a dark history on the German side of World War II.

With a fallen angel feasting on local high school students, a horde of Bacchants blowing in from Vegas with their special brand of deadly decadence, and a dangerously sexy Celtic goddess of fire vying for his attention, Atticus is having trouble scheduling the witch hunt. But aided by his magical sword, his neighbor’s rocket-propelled grenade launcher, and his vampire attorney, Atticus is ready to sweep the town and show the witchy women they picked the wrong Druid to hex.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
When I first discovered urban fantasy at a brick n' mortar Barnes & Noble, the basic concept compelled me like no other: you take some fantastical critters or magical doodads, slap 'em down in a contemporary setting, and then hang on for the ride.

Think of it: The entire world's collected mythology and folklore is waiting to be mined for fictional gold. That's what makes urban fantasy the most exciting genre to read and write for me. The potential for supernatural shenanigans in the present seems infinite. To narrow the focus a bit and keep myself sane, when I sat down to write Hounded, the first book of The Iron Druid Chronicles, I made myself a list of what I wanted to contribute to the genre. I wanted an unusual hero, easily distinguishable from others; I wanted to give man's best friend a voice, and I wanted it to be a big best friend, like an Irish wolfhound; I wanted a little old lady sipping whiskey on her porch, some gratuitous allusions to Shakespeare, and a beautiful, (mostly) normal girl in there with freckles and strawberry lip gloss; and I wanted a whole lot of gods and goddesses trying to survive in a secular world, especially from some pantheons we don't hear about all that often. Also, because they kind of scare me, no leather pants.

The Iron Druid Chronicles follows the adventures of Atticus O'Sullivan, a 2,100-year-old Druid who's discovered that it's the little things in life that make it worth living, and he can continue to enjoy those things so long as he hides from the Irish gods who want to kill him. Unfortunately, once he decides to take a stand, he draws the attention of all sorts of beings who thought the last real Druid had passed from this world long ago.

Part of the great fun of writing a character this old is figuring out where Atticus was during all of history's great events and whether he might have had a hand in them. But the pith, the core of what makes him so interesting to me is how he handles outliving all his friends and loved ones: How does he hang on to his humanity when his lifespan is greater than that of every other human?

The Iron Druid Chronicles still has plenty of familiar urban fantasy elements, but I hope readers will enjoy this very different hero who can talk to both gods and dogs, yet loves nothing so much as conversing with friends over a fine plate of fish and chips and a pint to wash it down.

Publishers Weekly
Kevin Hearne's sexy second Iron Druid urban fantasy (after Hounded) cranks out action and quips at a frenzied pace as Atticus O'Sullivan faces a group of nasty Nazi witches who happen to be old frenemies of his. Atticus knew that he had more dealings coming with the Tempe, Ariz. coven, but he hadn't expected to face the local witches so soon after their last fraught encounter, and he's still healing from his battle with Aenghus Óg, the Celtic god of love. He's also fending off requests to thrash gods from other pantheons now that the battle with Aenghus has boosted his reputation. Werewolves, vampires, and a group of swinging Bacchants join in as Atticus faces down two dozen evil witches and their demon pets in this fun and highly irreverent read. (June)
From the Publisher
“A page-turning and often laugh-out-loud-funny caper through a mix of the modern and the mythic.”—Ari Marmell, author of The Warlord’s Legacy

“Kevin Hearne breathes new life into old myths, creating a world both eerily familiar and startlingly original.”—Nicole Peeler, author of Tempest Rising

“A witty new fantasy series.”—Kelly Meding, author of Three Days to Dead
Library Journal
Hearne's follow-up to Hounded (first of the "Iron Druid Chronicles") finds Atticus O'Sullivan, the last druid-age roughly 2000 years old—trying to make peace with the local coven of witches while destroying a very dangerous coven new to town. Add invading Bacchants and Celtic goddesses up to no good, and Atticus is doing everything but having the relaxing life he longs for. A terrific entry in the series, with laugh-out-loud moments and a fast-paced story. Luke Daniels does an amazing job voicing the various characters but by far does the best characterization with Oberon, Atticus's Irish wolfhound who mentally communicates with the druid. Highly recommended for fans of Kim Harrison or Jim Butcher's "Dresden Files."—Donna Bachowski, Orange Cty. Lib. Syst., Orlando, FL
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345522498
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/7/2011
  • Series: Iron Druid Chronicles Series , #2
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 65,982
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Kevin Hearne

Kevin Hearne is a native of Arizona and really appreciates whoever invented air-conditioning. He graduated from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff and now teaches high school English. When he’s not grading essays or writing novels, he tends to his basil plants and paints landscapes with his daughter. He has been known to obsess over fonts, frolic unreservedly with dogs, and stop whatever he’s doing in the rare event of rain to commune with the precipitation. He enjoys hiking, the guilty pleasure of comic books, and living with his wife and daughter in a wee, snug cottage.
 

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 275 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(179)

4 Star

(74)

3 Star

(16)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 275 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 26, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Fresh new urban fantasy

    This series is reshingly funny, witty, and sarcastic while remembering that this genre isn't a romance novel with a little sword and sorcery thown in. Far too many writers think sexual angst and a vampire or two is all a good book needs. Not. He also has created the best dog character every. I love the view of the world the oberon character has. I look forward to see where all these characters go in this fictional world. Lastly, there are some seasoned writers in this genre who could learn a lot from this writer, his books and his style.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 19, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    An extremely entertaining second release to a fun new series.

    I had this series recommended based on how I enjoyed The Dresden Files. Seeing that it would be a while before another Dresden Files comes out I went looking for the series.

    First off, this is the second book. You need to read the first book Hounded. This sets up the universe some and there is a continuing arc between the two books. However you don't have to read the first one to enjoy this one.

    The main character is a druid. The last druid. He's kept himself alive for over 2000 years. He's managed to tick off a group of witches that are encroaching on his home turf, and our Druid teams up with the local witches that he's had a few run ins with.

    This is a very irreverent series. He uses pop culture jokes to insult ancient gods & goddesses, and in general I find the sense of humor in this book to be funny and creates laugh out loud moments while reading. It's a great pace, great read, and I really enjoyed this and the following book 'Hammered'.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 22, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    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 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.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 12, 2012

    Hexed is much improved upon by Hearne from Hounded, and marks a

    Hexed is much improved upon by Hearne from Hounded, and marks a promising future for the Iron Druid Chronicles. While Hounded was a fun read, it lacked much of a coherent plot and clearly was Hearne's attempt at getting his feet wet. Hexed on the other hand begins to see the formation of a plot, although the overarching plot is certainly not there yet.

    Hexed does three things that were very lacking in Hearne's debut; character building, foreshadowing, and world building. All of these combine to create a much more enjoyable and in-depth read. While I called the first book something similar to brain candy, Hexed deviates from that territory and tries to make the Iron Druid Chronicles a legitimate series. It doesn't quite achieve that, but it is a valid attempt.

    In Hounded, many of the characters felt two dimensional and stilted. There was not a whole lot to them aside from what was directly said by the author. The interaction between Atticus and his gods continues to be good, but the relationship between Atticus and those around him improves remarkably in terms of getting fleshed out and our ability to see into them. The most important of these is his relationship with his apprentice Granuaile. We begin to see some of the Druidic teachings that Atticus is trying to impose, as well as what Granuaile is actually like without the influence of a witch in her head. In both cases, Hearne does an excellent job and it really makes the reader look forward to the fact that Atticus will be spending the next 12 years at least with Granuaile by his side as opposed to dreading it.

    The other aspect that really gets fleshed out is Atticus's relationship with Leif and Hal. They are often referenced in the earlier book but neither seemed to have much of a personality aside from the typical werewolf vampire stereotype. This book faces important conflicts for each of them that allows Atticus to truly get to know them better, or at least gives the reader a chance to do so. Prior we knew that they were Atticus's lawyers but we did not know exactly how far the personal feelings went outside of that. In Hexed we see that Hal truly does like Atticus as a friend. The easy banter that they fall into and Hal's willingness to toe the line against Magnus's orders help the reader get a much better sense of Hal's character. Leif on the other hand appears to have a much more business like relationship with Atticus. While they appear to enjoy each other’s company as evidenced by some of the Shakespearean banter in the book, when it gets down to the fine details it does appear to be more quid pro quo then Atticus's relationship with Hal is. The fact that Leif is unwilling to help Atticus until he promises to help with Thor leads the reader to believe that there could be a conflict that has Atticus and Leif on opposite sides if push ever came to shove.

    This leads into the next major improvement that Hearne appears to be working on; foreshadowing. The first book really read more along the lines of: the rambling day to day activities of the last druid. The plot was moment to moment and there was hardly any foreshadowing in it. This is not the case in Hexed, and really shows growth as an author. We begin to learn of the politics among the gods, especially with The Morrigan and Brighid. Their attempts to manipulate Atticus into taking their sides are enjoyable and add some of the only humility we see from Atticus. In addition, one can tell that there is a rich back story with Thor to come at some point in the future. Why does everyone want him dead? What did Thor do to Leif?

    We also begin to see some of the more realistic foreshadowing about those around Atticus. It only makes sense that there would be ramifications now that he's not running. Atticus begins to realize this in Hexed, and it adds a sense of realism that was missing in the first book. It's not just him that can be targeted, but those he loves as well.

    Lastly, the world building has drastically improved. We the readers begin to learn about the gods on Earth, the realms of the different gods, and how those realms can be accessed. Prior to Hexed we knew that most gods did not reside on Earth but we did not really know where they did reside. Did all the gods live together there? Turns out that no, most gods have their own realms and places they can and cannot access. We learn more about the ways of the druids as well, through Atticus's teachings of Granuaile. Overall we the readers just begin to learn a lot more about the entire world that they live in. It appears to be going the route of most urban fantasy: the world is the world we know it, but we just refuse to see the supernatural. This is neither bad nor good, but it is nice to know the direction that it is going.

    This is not to say that Hexed is without its faults though. It has them, and they are not rare. The humor at times is very forced. The books also seems to not know what to do when there is not action going on. For such a short book, it does experience points of dragging on. Be it because of scenes not flowing well together, or repetitive action scenes. Hearne needs to learn that there is more to a book then just Atticus getting himself into scraps repeatedly, healing up, talking to someone important, and then rinsing and repeating. He does a better job in Hexed but it still isn't great. There are also points where the writing is just sub-par. It won't flow that well, or it could be sequenced better.

    As a whole though Hexed is a remarkable improvement upon Hounded. It truly is a good attempt at turning a young adult style brain candy book into a series that has a shot at drawing older readers looking for a more serious style of book. I hold high hopes for it and will be eagerly reading the next installment.

    4/5 overall.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 1, 2012

    I heartily recommend

    I love the series. It has action, magic, great lifelike settings, over-the-top mythological characters and simmering just under the surface, sexual tension. Luckily said tension doesn't cause characters to start having sex every time they think they are going to die (thank God). Another plus is that the author does not feel the need to recap what happened in the previous stories, ad nauseum. Word to the wise; people are not going to start in the middle of a series. Mr. Hearne respects us enough to just start where he left off and for that I am extremely grateful. I look forward to the next installment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2012

    Awesome follow up to Hounded

    I wasn't too sure that Hearne would be abke to keep up the humor and fun through a second book. Atticus's confrontration with the "bad" coven of witches had me running out to buy Hammered as soon as I could! This is one author I'll be following for sure!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 31, 2011

    Good read

    If you're looking for plain old escapism fun this series is for you. It's written in a fast paced style that will keep the pages turning, or rather the finger swiping. Give a spin and just enjoy

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Highly recommend.

    A refreshing new twist in urban fantasy.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2014

    If you love Dresden

    If you are a Jim Butcher fan you will love Kevin Hearne's Iron Druid.

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  • Posted March 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    A second very enjoyable outing from Kevin Hearne in the Iron Dru

    A second very enjoyable outing from Kevin Hearne in the Iron Druid series. The action picks up not long after the end of Hounded, in which a goodly section of the Arizona wild-lands were destroyed during Atticus' battle with Aenghus Og and an army of demons / fallen angels, and Atticus spends the first half of the book dealing with the ramifications of that battle, including numerous requests to kill other gods since he's already killed two from his own pantheon. The book is action-packed with multiple sub-plots converging into a big final battle, as is standard for most current urban fantasy series. Also as is standard, this second book expands on the world-building, just somehow narrowly avoiding info-dump exposition at some points. By the end of the book, we have a much better sense of how the Last Living (and near-immortal) Druid fits not only with his own pantheon (most of whom seem to view him as a tool/possession), but how the various pantheons fit together and what the politic nature of the supernatural world is. Plot-wise, the only moment that fell particularly flat for me was the fight scene between Atticus, Coyote and the Fallen Angel left over from Hounded; it felt like the win was too easy for Atticus given what we'd been told of the angel's power level, and Atticus' recovery from his wounds was too easy as well. The scene is over fast, and not really important to the main plot. It serves more to wrap up a dangling plot thread from the first book and to introduce us to Coyote, because you can't set an urban fantasy in Arizona and ignore the native pantheons.

    I like Atticus as a character, although I admit I'm already concerned about how "all powerful" he seems; these first two books read like what I imagine the Dresden Files would be like if Butcher had skipped the first four books and introduced Harry at the point where he's already becoming aware that he's more powerful than anyone suspected. And I really love the Widow MacDonagh -- yes, she's a stereotype right now, but not in a negative or derogatory manner. She's a fun supporting character who provides Atticus solid emotional support (and some awkward flirting). The stereotype that doesn't work for me is in the supporting character of Mister Semerdjian, a Muslim who in the first book was just an annoyance to Atticus, but in this book is revealed to be a black market arms dealer. It's too easy of a trigger for readers -- the name itself didn't trigger any associations for me in Hounded, where I don't think the characters religious beliefs are mentioned at all, but in a few paragraphs that are clearly Plot Necessities (Atticus has to get all that non-magical ordinance somewhere, after all, and a black-market arms dealer is an okay person to steal from, right?), the picture of Mister Semerdjian as That Type Of Muslim is clearly painted for us. I suppose, in this light, the characterization of the Widow MacDonagh is also "too easy," but the intent/use of the character is so very different. (Interestingly, I see a lot of reviews of this book centering on how sexist/misogynist it is -- but none of those reviewers (who raise valid concerns) discuss how this one secondary character is equally an insult (perhaps because Semerdjian is in only a couple of scenes, whereas the female characters make up the focus of the book and motivate all of the major plots). Food for thought.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2014

    Action-Packed Urban Fantasy

    The second book in Hearne's series is well-paced, exciting, and filled with oddball characters. I hope we see more of Malina and her coven in the next book; they are quite intriguing.

    Recommended to fans of Kelley Armstrong, Zoe Archer, and Gail Carriger. -- lyradora

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    I really do love this series. It's not because the plots are al

    I really do love this series.

    It's not because the plots are all that deep. I think, actually, that it's because they -aren't- that I like the stories being told. Not being buried in heavy, complicated plots lets the focus stay on the characters and that's what I read for in the end: characters I can learn to love.

    I laughed out loud quite often, and not just at Oberon this time, though he does still get an unfair portion of the best lines, I think. If a book can make me laugh, I count it very good. 

    This book felt a little short to me, but I'm not exactly sure why. Maybe it was that I got caught up in what was going on and didn't really pay attention to passing time. Or, maybe it's actually shorter than Hounded. Either way, I'm not upset about it. Matter of fact, I wish there was more. I do have other books in the series to look forward to, so that makes it a little better. Still, I could have lingered in this story a little longer and been quite happy to do so. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    A fun read

    Continues nicely from the first book in the series. A good job of developing characters.

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  • Posted December 17, 2013

    Hexed - Scary good fun

    Atticus is a bit like a Marvel comic book character, surviving despite all odds...but a great fun read. Read it on my way home on the plane. The witches were scary! but quite interesting to learn more "Druidish" lore. Thanks Mr Hearne, I'm enjoying the read.

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  • Posted August 23, 2013

    Highly recommended

    I love this series and "Hexed" was a good read all the way through. Hearne has such a good sense of humor which is exemplified in the hero and his dog engaging in really witty exchanges. The action is great and after finishing the book, I immediately ordered #3 in the series. This book is a bonus for Arizonans, as Hearne has his Druid go all over the state to locations very familiar to us, even local restaurants. If you like fantasy with a good touch of our real world, you'll love this book.

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  • Posted July 15, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    I liked the story quite a bit. However it is long winded in pl

    I liked the story quite a bit. However it is long winded in places, and the vocabulary lessons and references get really old after awhile.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2013

    I am currently reading book 2 of the Iron Druid series and I am

    I am currently reading book 2 of the Iron Druid series and I am really enjoying it. Its easy reading, funny and irreverant at times and creative. I also just finished book 2 of the Dresden Files which I enjoyed. I find myself switching between the 2 series with every other book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2013

    Love this series

    The whole series is fantastic. Fun, adventurous, and keeps you wanting more!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2013

    Decent Modern Fantasy

    Fresh perspective in modern fantasy, blending old world of swords and sorcery into modern life. The writer does tend to the left on his politics in the story, but not so much as to detract. Character development is relatively steady and humor is used quite successfully throughout the book(s). Male and female characters are realistic, and not overblown with unreal attributes. I am reading the series to fill time between the "Dresden Files" and it is filling the time nicely. I recommend the series with a warning they will be a quick read. I can easily finish a book in one day.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2013

    Great Read!

    You will not be disappointed.

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