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41
4.1 out of 5 stars
Hammered: The Iron Druid Chronicles
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 31 July 2011
Not my normal cup of tea bought this on amazons recommedation and wow this guy is amazing great story great dog . 3rd in a series of at least 6 and they are all great so far mix of action and laughs must read for all .
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So, Thor... other than knowing he's responsible for Thursday being named Thursday in English and donderdag in Dutch and that there was a film about his comic book character last year, I didn't know much about him. I certainly didn't know he was such an unpleasant character, to put it mildly. Needless to say, Hammered relieved me of my ignorance and put me solidly on the 'Let's kill Thor'-train that Atticus is on in the book and where he can't seem to get off, despite looking really hard for the exit.

Hammered is the third book in the Iron Druid Chronicles after Hounded and Hexed. It's far more directly connected to Hexed, than that was to Hounded and it's clear that had there not been more books contracted for, this could have been the end of the tale. Luckily, there are and it wasn't, so we can look forward to Tricked this April. It's also the first book largely set away from Atticus' home town of Tempe, Arizona. It was fun to see Atticus exploring the Asgard plane while going in to fulfil his debt to Laksha, which he incurred in Hexed. It was great to explore different planes of existence, not just Asgard, but also the fae world, where Atticus needs to travel to easily transport himself around the world.

As before, we get more and more new pantheons added to the mythology of the book. Not only do we get a deeper look at the Norse pantheon, we also get to meet Väinämöinen, a Finnish god, Zhang Guo Lao, one of China's Eight Immortals and Perun, the Russian god of Thunder. In addition, after meeting Mary in Hexed, Atticus gets searched out by Jesus in this book. I loved the scenes where Jesus and the Morrigan try to dissuade Atticus from going to Asgard. It showed that sometimes doing what is right - keeping your word of honour to a friend - isn't the same thing as doing what is wise and that what is right and what is wise will differ from person to person. Also the return of the Hammers of God and Jesus' summary dismissal of them was brilliant. In just a few scenes Hearne gives a social commentary on the dangers of religious zealotism without straying into moralising or preaching. I really enjoy how Hearne mixes up the different pantheons and mythologies and at the risk of repeating myself; this is what makes this series so special!

In the end, Atticus can't go back on his given word of honour and he, Leif and four more companions set out for Asgard. On the way there Hearne cleverly gives us the tales of why they want to kill Thor. It's done in a way reminiscent of the Canterbury Tales, with each character getting a chapter to tell their tale. I definitely got my wished for background history for Leif and as a bonus for Gunnar as well! The dynamic of this group worked really well and I really liked the time we spent with them. The battle in Asgard was awesome, very grim, but at times with some humour infused as well. They don't all make it out alive, which I found very realistic, but also kind of sad. There is a lot of loss for Atticus in this book, which while painful also stresses Atticus' humanity and shows that even if he had wanted to he can't freeze his heart from caring about others.

As with Hounded and Hexed there is a lot of humour in the books and the same sense of fun pervades Hearne's writing, despite things taking such a grim turn at the end. The one downside for me was the lack of Oberon in this book. Because Atticus is going into battle, he leaves Oberon safely in Tempe and we get far less of Oberon's funny observations than we did in previous books. I look forward to Tricked to see where Atticus, Oberon and Granuaile end up after leaving Tempe. I'm also curious to see whether Hearne's fun writing tone will darken to accompany the grim turn events have taken and the myriad of troubles that seem to lie in store for Atticus and company. Hammered is a great continuation of a very good urban fantasy series. The time to get on board with the series is now, before we dive in to the next phase of the story!
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on 13 October 2011
Great once again. I love this series. It makes such a nice change for me to have a male protagonist and Atticus is such a likeable guy.

There are a couple of shocks to be found in this latest instalment, the author isn't afraid to pull the rug out from under his readers it seems. There was a great section that also really stood out for me in this one. It was still written first person from Atticus' point of view as in the other books, but this time there were four or five chapters in a row of different characters telling tales of Thor around a camp-fire. When the first person told their tale and it took an entire chapter I thought, "Huh, that was...unusual", and was surprised when it became apparent that we were going to get the same length of tale from each member of the group, but after that, I found myself getting lost in the stories and appreciated the way the different speakers put their individual tales across. Thor, the big butthead that he is, didn't come off well in any of them as you can well imagine by this point.

This series encompasses tonnes of mythology. I love all that, although I don't know if my enjoyment is helped by the fact that I already have a passing knowledge of the events of Ragnarök from other books I've read (see, reading urban fantasy makes you a smarty-pants), so I was able to keep up with all the different gods and deities and such, but had I not, I might have gotten a bit bogged down with information overload. It would be hard for me to say for sure.

There's a bit of a mystery towards the end of the book. I wouldn't call it a cliffhanger, exactly, but I am very curious about a couple of the character's fates in the next book(s).

I have to do that "waiting" thing now for book four: Tricked, out in May 2012...I hate waiting, but I have loved these first three novels in the Iron Druid Chronicles immensely so you can bet I will be reading all the rest as soon as they come out.

I love the cover as always. He's such a perfect representation of Atticus to me.
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on 5 February 2014
The third book in the series was not as good as the two previous books. If you have read the first two in the series, then you know that the Iron Druid is on the way to fight Thor with Leif, Hal and a few others. The storyline in Hammered seemed to drag in terms of the group actually getting to meet the Norse Gods and while I have praised the writer previously because he showed innovation and creativity though his characters and their adversaries this book lacked substance.

Previous reviewers have commented on the bonding session between the merry band of Thor haters - to me this was a non issue although you do get the feeling that its purpose was to add pages rather than to allow Atticus to "know" all members of the group so he could shift them from one realm to another. In fact you get the impression that our hero was unimpressed by their stories ( with the exception of Leif's).

In previous books I liked our hero and found him to be a good guy with some degree of morals but in this book I disliked the iron druid finding him insufferably arrogant, self centred and a know it all.

The book was disappointing.and am hoping the next in the series shows improvement.
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on 1 December 2014
The third volume in the Iron Druid chronicles is a direct sequel to the second, and rounds off a number of story threads serving as an end to the opening trilogy. There are a lot of battle scenes which actually I find a bit of a turn off compared to the more talky bits, and the humour seemed to be taken a little too far in places.

The plot also felt a little more absurd than the earlier novels, despite being perfectly in keeping with the world and style established. It felt a bit 'epic' in scale and I think that detracted from the simplicity of the set up that had charmed me earlier.

There is a nice opportunity to get to know some of the characters a bit better, which I really enjoyed. As that part of the book began I was concerned that it might turn out to be filler just to space out the action, but actually it was very interesting and probably my favourite sequence from the book.

Overall, a nice action/fantasy/comedy romp that I enjoyed - but perhaps not quite as much as Hexed or Hounded. I'm still looking forward to finding out where Hearne takes the story in the next few books which are sitting waiting on my shelf.
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The third in Mr Hearne's enjoyable druid series. Atticus is the last remaining druid, 2000 years old and he looks like he is in his twenties. In an urban fantasy scenario, he deals with Gods of various types and religions and traditional creatures of the night such as witches, vampires and werewolves.

You should read the series in order (and it's worth it) but here Atticus fulfils a promise to help his vampire and Werewolf chums kill the legendary Thor. The author has a light and entertaining touch with many modern references (including Star Trek and Neil Gaiman) but the research and thought is also obvious here. Those with strong religious beliefs may be offended (Atticus has lunch with Jesus) but Hearne is very careful not to mock with his take on a world where religions and Gods co-exist and their strength is based on the level of worship (building on Gaiman's American Gods theme).

There are things unresolved here which will make you eagerly anticipate the next in the series.
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on 21 February 2014
I love these books. I know some reviews have said there's huge info dumps, and apparently pointless story telling and all the rest of it, but I don't care. I can just dive into these books and enjoy them - and when the story pauses while something else is going, I get interested in that as well. All good for me.

Now, word of warning - this one lost a star cos frankly - there's not enough Oberon in it. That dog should have his own series in my opinion and because Atticus is off gallivanting in this one for most of the book, poor Oberon is limited. So hopefully in the next one, he'll come back.

But that's my opinion! Other people may not find Oberon as entertaining as I do and there's plenty in this to keep everyone going. If you liked the first two, chances are, you'll like this one as well. If you haven't read the first two - go read them before you look at this one.
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on 30 January 2012
Atticus goes after Thor because Thor is a bit of a dick. This does not make Thor the terrible bad guy I was hoping for :)

In fact Atticus commits some pretty serious crimes at the start of the novel which would make him a villain in any other series I think

Atticus collects a bunch of companions who all have a beef with Thor and off they go to Asgard to give him a kicking... And that is it, Not much of a story.

Hearne seems to realise the flimsyness of his tale, so we are treated with a number of vignettes one for each of the companions. This adds very little to the story and just serves to pad things out.

Still, what there is, is not bad and it passed the time, but was pretty weak compared to other examples of the genre.
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The third book in the Kevin Hearne series and one that continues to build upon the success of the others as the stakes are raised even higher due to promises of the lead character. It's a quirky series, it's a whole lot of fun to read and of course there is nothing else out there like it.

Add to this great prose, an author who likes to keep the readers on tenterhooks and the reader really is in for one hell of a treat at the culmination of the series to date. (Although that said he has been signed for a new one, so worry not.) All in a whole host of fun with great dialogue, a wonderful twist on the myths of the western world and for me, this is one of my highlight series of the year. Great stuff.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 25 April 2013
Throughly enjoed the book and the series. I would recommend it to any fan of fantasy fiction. Leaves the reader looking forward to the next book.
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