There are so many fabulous books out there, by so many fabulous authors. But one that I have to make special mention of is Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid series. Kevin is part of the League of Reluctant Adults with me, but that’s not why I’m pimping him. Well, okay, only partially why. The main reason is because I read his first novel, HOUNDED, a few weeks ago, and I absolutely inhaled it.
First, there’s the cover.
Now, I know that authors have very little say over their covers — God, do I know this — but Kevin absolutely lucked out, or maybe he made the appropriate sacrifice to the right cover god, because this is a hell of a cover. First, there’s a guy on it who A) is dressed, B) is hot and C) has a sword that’s not a convenient crotch metaphor. That’s because Atticus, the protagonist, isn’t just some beefcake whose job it is to make some heroine A) swoon, B) discover her own latent magical power, or C) pregnant. Not that there’s anything wrong with any of those things — actually, there’s a heck of a lot RIGHT about those things, yowza — but it’s so terrific having a hero who’s exactly that: a hero.
Okay, so I sort of segued into the content. In a nutshell: I loved HOUNDED. Loved, loved, loved. Loved on the scale of chocolate and Matt Damon, and Matt Damon in chocolate. Loved to the point that I started imagining writing fanfic about Atticus. Seriously. Loved. This. Book.
Why? Well, Atticus is an incredible narrator — he’s smart and witty and humorous and serious and clever and powerful. I’m gushing, but it’s well-deserved gush. He can perform magic and wield a sword and deliver a quip and hold his own with gods. And it’s all organic; none of it feels forced. Just as important, Atticus isn’t perfect. Oh, no, definitely not. He makes his share of mistakes, and he’s got one hell of an Achilles heel (even though that’s not the body part in question). Tied into that, the writing is a pleasure to read. The pace is tight, the plot is solid, and the story is engrossing.
So…yeah. Loved it.
And today, the second book in the series, HEXED, hits the shelves.
It’s another fabulous cover. And I’m sure it will be another fabulous book.