Atticus O’Sullivan, the 2000 year old druid who looks like he’s 22, has just pissed off a bunch of Old Norse gods (for details, read Hammered) and now he must go into hiding. It’s a good time for that because what he really wants to do is spend the next 12 years training his gorgeous and smart apprentice, Granuaile. Fortunately his werewolf lawyer can fix up some new identities, but first he has to fake his own death so the gods will stop hunting him, and then he needs to do a favor for Coyote, the Navajo trickster god.
Of course, this doesn’t go as easily as he hopes. The favor that wily Coyote demands involves befriending an elemental that Atticus doesn’t know, transferring a vein of gold to a Native American reservation, sabotaging a coal mining company, fighting off some scary skinwalkers, and battling some “locusts of unusual size.” And he’s also a little worried about the new vampires who’ve moved into the Phoenix area after his friend Leif was injured in Asgard.
During all the mayhem we learn a little more about Atticus’s past — there’s a lot of it, so Hearne doles it out a little at a time in each novel. Specifically, in Tricked we learn about why he came to the New World, how he killed Bigfoot in the Florida Everglades, and how some of his charms and tattoos work. We also learn more about who Coyote is and where he came from.
Readers will be happy to know that Oberon and Granuaile are back in Tricked. They stayed home during the outing to Asgard in Hammered. Granuaile is looking pretty and acting sassy, and Oberon, everyone’s favorite Irish Wolfhound, plays a prominent role in Tricked and earns a lot of sausage and bacon snacks. Both of these characters provide plenty of comic relief.
I’ve been listening to the audiobook versions of THE IRON DRUID CHRONICLES. Mostly I love Luke Daniels’ narration, though this time I think he went a little overboard with Oberon. A lot of the time he ended up sounding like Scooby Doo. I forgive him.
If you’re new to THE IRON DRUID CHRONICLES, I recommend starting at the beginning with Hounded. This is a great series; it’s got a perfect pace, charming characters, pleasing prose, and just the right amount of humor. At the end of Tricked it feels like a major change is coming as Atticus and Granuaile are finally (we assume) able to settle down to get Granuaile trained. The next novel, Trapped (that’s an ominous title, isn’t it?), takes place 12 years later but there’s a novella called Two Ravens and One Crow which takes place between Tricked and Trapped which fans will not want to miss.