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Besieged : Stories from The Iron Druid Chronicles
by Kevin Hearne and Luke Daniels

Overview - The ancient gods are alive and well in the modern world in this hilarious, action-packed collection of original short stories featuring Atticus O'Sullivan, the two-thousand-year-old Irishman from Kevin Hearne's New York Times bestselling Iron Druid Chronicles.  Read more...


 

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More About Besieged by Kevin Hearne; Luke Daniels
 
 
 
Overview

The ancient gods are alive and well in the modern world in this hilarious, action-packed collection of original short stories featuring Atticus O'Sullivan, the two-thousand-year-old Irishman from Kevin Hearne's New York Times bestselling Iron Druid Chronicles.

  • In ancient Egypt, Atticus agrees to raid a secret chamber underneath the library of Alexandria, dodging deadly traps, only to learn that on-site security includes two members of the Egyptian pantheon.
  • At a Kansas carnival, fun and games turns to murder and mayhem, thanks to soul-snatching demons and flesh-craving ghouls luring visitors into an all-too-real house of horrors.
  • Verily, in olde England, striking up a friendship with William Shakespeare lands both Atticus and the Bard in boiling hot water with a trio of infamous witches.
  • During the Gold Rush, the avatar of greed himself turns the streets of San Francisco red with blood and upsets the elemental Sequoia. Atticus may have to fight fire with fire if he's going to restore balance.
    More, you say? Indeed there is—including bogeymen, vampire hordes, wrathful wraiths, and even a journey to the realm of the dead. Prepare to be besieged with nine tantalizing tales—not to be missed, never to be forgotten.
    Praise for Kevin Hearne's Iron Druid Chronicles
    "Clever, fast paced and a good escape."—Jason Weisberger, Boing Boing
    "Celtic mythology and an ancient Druid with modern attitude mix it up in the Arizona desert in this witty new fantasy series."—Kelly Meding, author of Chimera
    "Outrageously fun."—The Plain Dealer, on Hounded
    "Superb . . . plenty of quips and zap-pow-bang fighting."Publishers Weekly (starred review), on Hounded
    "An exciting mix of comedy, action, and mythology . . . [Atticus] is one of the best main characters currently present in the urban fantasy genre."Fantasy Book Critic, on Tricked
    "Funny, razor-sharp . . . plenty of action, humor, and mythology."Booklist (starred review), on Shattered

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    Details
    • Publisher: Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Gr
    • Date: July 2017
     
    Excerpts

    From the cover
    The Eye of Horus

    Atticus shares this story early on during Granuaile's training period, in between Tricked and the novella Two Ravens and One Crow.

    I am often reminded how a small fire underneath a vast sky can bind people together like nothing else. For all that we are social creatures, we are too often shoved into solitary confinement by circumstance. The color of our skin isn't like everyone else's, or our language is different, or our religion isn't the one that gets us invited to dinner by the neighbors. That last one has kept me alone for a long, long time. There are no more Druids walking the earth, unless you count the various neo-pagan versions, who are all operating on nineteenth-century reconstructions.

    And despite the fact that I have an apprentice, I suspect she won't be the same sort of Druid that I am—I mean believing in the old Irish gods as I do, paying them respect and offering them prayers, observing the holidays and the rites as the Irish used to do in the days before the invasion of the Christians. Gaia doesn't require belief in any deity to be bound to her: She merely requires a highly trained mind and unswerving devotion to her protection. With Granuaile I think there is a willingness to see the divine, to acknowledge and appreciate both its wonder and terror, but a stubborn resistance to worshipping it.

    But she liked staring into campfires well enough. Fires were warm cups of non-thinking serenity after the daily rigors of training. I had been exhausting her mentally with languages and headspace exercises and then physically with the martial arts. By the time the sun sank behind the baked sandstone cliffs of the Navajo Nation each day, she was ready to lose herself in the yellow and orange flickers of flame. And quiz me about my past.

    "Ugh," she said, flopping on the ground by our fire pit and popping open a bottle of beer with a hiss and clink as the top fell to the ground. "What a day. Wish I could just upload kung fu like Neo instead of learning it the slow way." She leaned back against a rock padded with a bedroll and took a swig, winced at some ache or soreness in her muscles, then said, "Tell me about the old days, Atticus, when you were wee and had to walk both ways uphill in feces because no one had toilets."

    "You seriously want to hear about that?"

    "Well, I'd like to hear about some old shit, but it doesn't need to include actual shit, if that helps. I'm tired, damn it. Just tell me a story."

    Oberon said through our mental link. He was stretched out by the fire, lying across my feet, belly up for easy rubbing. Granuaile couldn't hear him, but she could follow along because I spoke my part of the conversation aloud.

    "What's that, Oberon?"



    "Oh, you mean Bast. Yes, I remember. Hard to forget something like that."



    "You already know why she was mad. She wanted me to return the book of her cult's mysteries that I had stolen long ago."



    "Oh, I see. Heh! Yes, I suppose that would be a good story for the night. Wow, this is going way back to the third century. I was still haunting Europe at the time."

    "Wait, Atticus, hold on," Granuaile said. "Is this going to take a while?"

    "I'm not sure. Is there some hurry?"

    "I don't want to interrupt you in the middle of it. I should answer the call of nature first."



    "Good call, then. We'll reconvene after a few words from nature."

    Some hiding places are better than others. The ones with friendly company are the best, and by friendly I mean people who don't particularly care about your background or what your tattoos mean. They just want a name to call you by, a...

     
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