Release Date: July 5, 2011
Author: Kevin Hearne
Publisher: Random House/Del Rey
Available: Barnes and Noble
From the Publisher: Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is worse than a blowhard and a bully—he’s ruined countless lives and killed scores of innocents. After centuries, Viking vampire Leif Helgarson is ready to get his vengeance, and he’s asked his friend Atticus O’Sullivan, the last of the Druids, to help take down this Norse nightmare.
One survival strategy has worked for Atticus for more than two thousand years: stay away from the guy with the lightning bolts. But things are heating up in Atticus’s home base of Tempe, Arizona. There’s a vampire turf war brewing, and Russian demon hunters who call themselves the Hammers of God are running rampant. Despite multiple warnings and portents of dire consequences, Atticus and Leif journey to the Norse plain of Asgard, where they team up with a werewolf, a sorcerer, and an army of frost giants for an epic showdown against vicious Valkyries, angry gods, and the hammer-wielding Thunder Thug himself.
I watched the movie Thor the weekend before I started listening to this one. It was completely disconcerting to see Thor portrayed in such a negative light after watching the dreamy Liam Hemsworth play such a nice god. But truly – the Thor of this world is a douchenozzle.
After hearing folks rail on him in passing throughout the previous two books, it was nice to finally get the back-story for why people wanted to see him dead. Plus, hearing both Leif and Gunnar’s stories provided depth of character that we hadn’t previously seen. Gunnar became more than just a hired gun; this story gave him character and personality and humanity that we hadn’t seen before.
The story-telling and world building in this installment of the series outshined the first two books. The only thing missing were two of my favorite characters – Oberon and Granuaile. Understandably, they couldn’t accompany Atticus and the others into Asgard. Lucky for us, however, Kevin Hearne wrote about their adventure while Atticus was gone in the short story A Test of Mettle (hint: click the title to read it!)
One of the best parts of this series is the humor that is continuously interjected. Atticus is a funny dude. Picture it: Atticus tries to explain to a 1000 year old vampire what a “squee” is – and offers examples for when he himself squees.
Yeah, that really happened.
How could you not want to go read (or listen!) to this one now?