I hate Coyote. In any form: Loki, Anansi, Prometheus, whatever… I dislike them all. That’s probably why it took me so long to pick this up after reading A Test of Mettle (Iron Druid #3.1), the short story featuring Granuaile’s point of view. Coyote has shown up in previous books and no matter how smart Atticus is, he can never best Coyote. I guess I just don’t like to see anyone getting one over my boy. So why would I want to pick this one up? Well…. Trapped (Iron Druid #5) is coming and coming FAST!! So dove in I did.
Like many of my favorite series, the world of The Iron Druid Chronicles has become comforting to me. I was delighted to be back with Atticus again. And what a relief to have Oberon back and in his full glory!! I actually went through the trouble of dog-earing pages with some of the best Oberon quotes to date. No one can relate historical facts and pop culture better than Oberon.
“… and behind that would be the transformers. Does that mean Optimus Prime has decided to help the Navajos achieve energy independence?” – Oberon
“If Sasquatch is really Keyser Söze, it’s no wonder they never caught him!” – Oberon
Most all the old characters are back. We’re also introduced to some pretty awesome new characters. They really MADE the story what it was. I don’t think Mr. Hearne could write a flat character if he tried. I’m antsy to say so much more about the old and new characters but I’m already borderline spoiling the book with my Oberon quotes. I’ll just say, the characters don’t disappoint. Okay, maybe some do…. AHHHH, no spoilers!!!
Setting / World Building
Where Hammered took it’s readers off to Asgard, Tricked is back in our world. Specifically, we’re transported back to Southwest America – an area I personally love and is very special to me. The locations Tricked takes place in are areas of Arizona that I’ve actually been to and vacationed in. So even though I had a leg-up on picturing the scenes, Mr. Hearne did a great job painting the setting with his words. Especially when he started moving mountains to build roads, literally.
Story / Tempo
Although the last quarter of the book had my head spinning (in a very good way), the tempo of the book in the beginning was a little too slow for my tastes. I guess there was quite a bit to set up for the Navajo legends but it was almost like that area could have been tightened up. And the little diversions along the way didn’t really do it for me. I’m not sure why but they seemed almost awkward. Like, why wasn’t this all discussed between the characters before? But no matter, I’m being extremely nit-picky here because Mr. Hearne has hit it out of the park so often that to find even some fault is absolute crazy talk.
The last quarter of the book more than makes up for any slowness in the beginning. You’ll be saying things out loud like, “Holy crap!”, “Oh no he didn”t!”, and “What the??” You might want to chose your reading location carefully. Don’t say you haven’t been warned….