Author: Kevin Hearne
Series: Iron Druid Chronicles 4
Rating: Two Petals
On the Author's Website:
Druid Atticus O’Sullivan hasn’t stayed alive for more than two millennia without a fair bit of Celtic cunning. So when vengeful thunder gods come Norse by Southwest looking for payback, Atticus, with a little help from the Navajo trickster god Coyote, lets them think that they’ve chopped up his body in the Arizona desert.
But the mischievous Coyote is not above a little sleight of paw, and Atticus soon finds that he’s been duped into battling bloodthirsty desert shapeshifters called skinwalkers. Just when the Druid thinks he’s got a handle on all the duplicity, betrayal comes from an unlikely source. If Atticus survives this time, he vows he won’t be fooled again. Famous last words.
This series has been slowly but steadily heading downhill. It started off so interesting with the druid magic and the main character that was always so funny, yet so strong. While all of that is still there, I'm finding that each successive book is losing a little of its charm. Tricked was a low point for me in the series and I haven't been able to get myself to pick up the next book.
Atticus is still busy paying off the favors he owes for the stupid things he got embroiled in during the previous books. In this story he owes Coyote, a Native American God, a big favor which includes helping to bring gold to the desert. On the way he has to figure out a way to defeat evil skinwalkers and survive to actually pay the favor back.
The best part of the book was definitely the research Hearne had to do for the Native American rituals and customs. I have always found that Hearne and Atticus really bring to life the various peoples they encounter in the stories and I enjoyed reading about the Native American information piled into this story.
I didn't like Atticus again, which is a problem considering he's the main character. I know I said this before in a previous review for the series, but it's still bothering me. He's such a smart guy and he has survived for thousands of years on his ingenuity alone. All the scrambling he has to do in order to keep his head attached feels exceedingly thoughtless, which doesn't match with his character. I also though the plot itself lacked depth. While there was plenty of description to build the world, I don't think Atticus actually did much of anything to then utilize that in figuring out how to survive Coyote's schemes. Instead he floated along like a leaf caught in a river current, doing almost nothing except react too late to the rocks thrown in his path. I was very underwhelmed by the plot and by Atticus himself.
The first book in the series had so much potential to lead to wonderful things, but I've found each successive book got progressively worse until I reached Tricked and realized this was the last straw. Tricked lacked depth, Atticus was far too idiotic for the role he was supposed to fill, and overall I was completely disappointed. I can't recommend this book and I haven't been able to pick up the next one in this series.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.