Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Review Two Ravens and One Crow, by Kevin Hearne book 4.5 in the Iron Druid Chronicles

Regular readers know that we are huge fans of Kevin Hearne and have a tendency to fanpoodle terribly, but oh my goodness it's Kevin Hearne, how could we not? Because this is a novella, it's going to be difficult to talk about without spoilers, so consider yourself warned. 

Atticus still has a few years left in his training of Granuaile and this of course means much sexual tension.  He has devised a plan with Oberon to "conceal the tower of his CARNAL DESIRE," by leaving to give his faithful hound a snack when she starts to perform her exercises in tight fighting work our gear.  They both know that something is going on between them, but Atticus believes that their relationship must remain professional.

Into this sexual angst drops the Morrigan to order Atticus, who she still insists on calling Siodhachan to come away with her immediately.  Before they can attend a dinner with the Gods who wish to converse with Atticus, he must have his tattoos repaired and this is something only the Morrigan can do, unfortunately for Atticus.  In Two Ravens and One Crow we get to see a different side of the Morrigan.  According to Atticus, she laughs almost girlishly - a term which most certainly does not go hand in hand with the Morrigan.  When they enter the chamber of abundance, fertility and harmony, we get to see her frustration and not being able to connect with others because she represents "sex or violent death. Sometimes both." Just when I thought that the Morrigan could not be more complex, this revelation of an inability to connect with others and that it brings her sadness, adds a new dimension to her character. 

Of course the Morrigan didn't retrieve poor Atticus to just hang out.  It seems that a few Gods from the Norse Pantheon wishes to see him about his blood debt.  Killing Thor, (no matter how much of an asshole he was thought to be) has repercussions Atticus must face.  Not only must Atticus worry that the fact that he is indeed alive will become common knowledge, but for the safety of those close to him as well.  How can you make amends for killing someone's kin?

What makes Two Ravens and One Crow so interesting is that we get more background into Atticus' long life.  In previous novels we discovered that Atticus has fathered many children and had a long relationship but what was he like when he lived in what would be considered the first of his human lives?  Did he age? Did he feel powerful?  Did he fear death?  How did Atticus become the character we know him as today and what was the first step on that journey?

Two Ravens and One Crow did exactly what a good novella is expected to do - tease the reader into wanting more while rewarding the faithful with some details to enrich the world and the protagonist.  It was a treat to wrap up in my blanket with a cup of tea and read this story.  Like all Hearne books, it had moments of laugh out loud funny and times that were endearing.  Two Ravens and One Crow had everything I have come to expect from Kevin Hearne.  Normally I skip novellas, but I am glad that I didn't in this case.  I highly recommend once again that you get a copy for yourself and one for a friend because there can be no greater gift to an urban fantasy fan than one of Kevin Hearne's books.  Okay, fanpoodling finished now.