For nearly two thousand years, only one Druid has walked the Earth—Atticus O’Sullivan, the Iron Druid, whose sharp wit and sharp sword have kept him alive as he’s been pursued by a pantheon of hostile deities. Now he’s got company. 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.
Atticus has been reunited with Owen which is going to be a trial for both of them after so many years have passed and Oberon is also having to happily adapt to having a female hound around the place as a companion to Granuaile. A message about her father from Laksha prompts Granuaile to go solo with Orlaith on a mission to India to find him, which Atticus is uneasy about but he has his own problems with the police on his trail again over the death of a friend, Loki going after Granuaile and an unknown traitor close to him.
Atticus is still recovering from the shock of the gift that The Morrigan directed him to-the frozen in time Archdruid who mentored Atticus. Owen has been thawed out unscathed and has to adapt to a world of technology that baffles and horrifies him as well as learning that he can't just swear and grope women when he feels like it. While it is difficult to renew their old bond, it does mean that they have three fully trained Druids to fight their enemies. Atticus decides to limit Owen's contact with Granuaile until he can teach him about modern laws and behaviour, and seeks help from the local Packs to look after Owen while Atticus attends to business.
"You think I'm being a Drama Hound don't you?"-Oberon
Granuaile is delighted to have her own hound Orlaith to go with her to India. Laksha tells her that her father was there on a dig and became possessed by an evil spirit that summons demons and gives them local people as hosts. Getting rid of the demon in each person is going to take too long so an ice knife may be required if Granuaile can persuade the Yetis to make one for her. Owen is also snooping around to find out who is plotting with their enemies to betray them.
For me, this book falls flat compared to the other books. I found most of Granuaile's solo mission boring and I'm not sure what it was really adding to the overall plot in the series. We know she is capable of being on her own and tackling issues but other than giving her personal bonding time with Orlaith, I saw no point to it. The only good part of her story was the interlude when we met the wonderful Yeti pack who are related to Manannan MacLir and also addicted to bacon and ice hockey! I so much want to see more of them and found myself wishing that her mission was to rescue avalanche victims with the Yeti Pack instead of trudging around India looking for her father.
"There has to be a Poodles Anonymous meeting somewhere."-Oberon
I did enjoy the addition of Owen which added extra humour to the book with his foul mouth and inability to adapt to a new world. I loved his interactions with the Pack, especially the bear wrestling scene where Atticus manages to upset everyone! I think the addition of Owen is going to be great for the series. It was also fun to have Orlaith come into the story, both as hound to Granuaile and finally, a girlfriend for Oberon! The Yeti Pack were fun and we need to see more of them, and if Laksha is going to come back, I hope her storyline is a bit stronger.
While I had issues with the India parts of the book, I did enjoy the traitor storyline and I had correctly guessed who it was going to be. I enjoyed the big reveal with civil war erupting in Brighid's domain when it all kicks off. It was an exciting battle scene which the author writes nicely as usual. I enjoyed the humour as I always do though I prefer the Druids and hounds to be together instead of off doing seperate things for so much of the book. There are still strong elements that keep you enjoying the series but it isn't the best book in the series.
Read November 2016.