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Review: Staked by Kevin Hearne

3 Stars

Disclaimer: This is the most recent book in a series of books collectively called the Iron Druid Chronicles.  Staked is the 8th book in the series.  I would highly recommend that you not read this book unless you have read the previous novels or you will be very lost.

Having read all of the previous books and waiting patiently and anxiously for each new book to come out so that I can catch up with my favorite Druid and his hound.  This is the first time I’ve been disappointed.  Which I guess is a pretty good thing seeing that this is 8 books into the series.  I wanted to like it more because I absolutely love the characters, but this book just fell flat in so many ways and so many areas, that I just couldn’t be any kinder than 3 stars.

This story picks up where Shattered left off.  Atticus is waging war on the vampires who have been trying to obliterate him for the last two thousand years.  Granuaile is recovering from her battle with Loki and trying to find a way to not only get rid of his mark, but also find a way to cloak herself from divination.  Atticus’ mentor, Owen, is still coming to grips with life in the modern age and living with the Flagstaff and Tempe werewolf packs and contemplating starting a new grove where he can train new druids.

The story switches between each of their perspectives, which brings a richness to the story that you would’t otherwise have if it was narrated completely from Atticus’ point of view.  But it can also lead to a very complicated story where there are so many different threads going on that it doesn’t all come together very well.  I was really confused and disappointed by this several times.  The only arc that came to any conclusion was the vampire war that Atticus and his allies have waged.  But even that was fairly anti-climatic and the ending was pretty much meh.

I was very disappointed with the journeys that both Granuaile and Owen took.  Especially when there were so many things that were brought into their narratives and then never fleshed out.  Granuaile is sent on a mission by the witches to get a horse away from Loki, but then what?  Owen finds out that Fand has broken out and they find out where she is hiding, but then what?  There’s a quick battle between the Norse and the dark elves, but to what end?  There were so many loose ends and story lines that went absolutely nowhere.  I don’t mind a cliffhanger or teasers for the next book.  But this was a bit much.

I still had a blast and equally enjoyable, as expected, was the master of the scene steal, Oberon.  I want an Irish Wolfhound of my own and I wan to name him Oberon and I want him to beg me for bacon and sausages and make me tell him stories when it’s bath time.  I wish Oberon could have his own book.  That would be amazing.  He steals every scene he’s ever in and his girlfriend, Orlaith, steals just as many as he does.  When they’re together, it’s awesome.

If you’ve already read the previous books, you’re going to read this one.  I just didn’t find it as enjoyable as the previous seven.  It was still good and I still love the characters.  Just didn’t live up to my own high expectations.

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