Atticus’s apprentice Granuaile is at last a full Druid herself. What’s more, Atticus has defrosted an archdruid long ago frozen in time, a father figure (of sorts) who now goes by the modern equivalent of his old Irish name: Owen Kennedy.
And Owen has some catching up to do.
Atticus takes pleasure in the role reversal, as the student is now the teacher. Between busting Atticus’s chops and trying to fathom a cell phone, Owen must also learn English. For Atticus, the jury’s still out on whether the wily old coot will be an asset in the epic battle with Norse god Loki—or merely a pain in the arse.
But Atticus isn’t the only one with daddy issues. Granuaile faces a great challenge: to exorcise a sorcerer’s spirit that is possessing her father in India. Even with the help of the witch Laksha, Granuaile may be facing a crushing defeat.
As the trio of Druids deals with pestilence-spreading demons, bacon-loving yeti, fierce flying foxes, and frenzied Fae, they’re hoping that this time, three’s a charm.
“To be rooted is to say, here am I nourished and here will I grow, for I have found a place where every sunrise shows me how to be more than what I was yesterday, and I need not wander to feel the wonder of my blessing.”
Damn did this book have a lot of things that was sorely needed in this series. First, the plot is finally important. Granuaile and Owens’ perspectives were pretty much useless, unnecessary, and mostly boring. What I’m talking about is the fact that Atticus finally decides to be proactive instead of reactive. Boy, was that sorely needed. The last book felt so frustrating because he was doing nothing but running from his problems.
Secondly, holy shit is Owen the character this series desperately needed. Owen is the only one so far to be willing to slap Atticus upside the head and call him out on all his shit. He respects Atticus, he thinks he has done good things over the last 2000 years, but boy is he having done of his bullshit. I love it. I’m on Owen’s side all the way. His story and perspective was pretty boring, because it is mostly of him learning what the modern world is like. But he shits on Atticus all the time, and that is great, so I excuse it more.
Granuaile’s story just seemed to be a way for Hearne to get rid of her for the book to make a dramatic comeback and show she is capable of doing something on her own. I just really hate the way he goes about it. This story does not really show at all how Granuaile is capable of working on her own. I did enjoy Hearne finally explored deeply something other than major European-based pantheons. He has paid lip service to other places, but nothing too deep. This was a start.
The only truly necessary part of the entire story was Atticus’ perspective. I thought at first that it was just going to be yet another book of Atticus going around doing things of no importance. Then we started dealing with who, exactly, has been behind all the trouble, and I started to perk up and enjoy the book. The first book I have truly enjoyed since the first. If there wasn’t so many unnecessary plot threads going on in the book, the rating would definitely be higher, if only because we’re finally getting to the damn point.
Like all odd numbered books in this series, this book was better than most. It had a plot central to the series and it had an amazing new character that breathed life into the story. The series still has a lot of problems, but I’m glad to finally get back to the story.
To read more reviews for this series, check out the Iron Druid Chronicles series page!