This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader. (and yes, this is different than my post on the print version)
The best and most consistent part of The Iron Druid Chronicles has been Atticus' Irish Wolfhound, Oberon. Now Kevin Hearne has given us a novella narrated by and starring him, with Atticus in the supporting role. It's good that he kept the Druid around, because he has the whole opposable thumb thing going for him and can do things like communicate with other people
While playing in a dog park, Oberon stumbles upon a rash of dognappings -- the victims are all Grand Champions. Oberon is appalled that such a thing can happen and vows to find the dogs and return them home. He enlists Atticus to assist him (and well, to do most of the work). They spend the next couple of days moving around the country visiting various dog trainers/owners and skirting trouble with the law. While Atticus does the heavy lifting of investigating, Oberon has a lot of fun meeting various Champion dogs -- in particular, a Boston terrier named Starbuck.
The interplay between Atticus and Oberon is a lot of fun, but his narration is even better -- between the repeated mentions of trying to pull off "the Full Jules" (reciting Ezekiel 25:17 at just the right moment); his summary/slash review of The Great Gatsby (which will forever alter the way I look at the book); Oberon as food critic (his takes on coffee and mustard are highlights); and a repeated tribute to Denis Leary's best movie, this book was flat-out entertaining. Because it's by Hearne and featuring Oberon, I assumed I'd enjoy it -- I didn't plan on (but should've) cackling by the 7% mark.
I thoroughly enjoyed this as a novella -- the story was good enough to justify the time reading, but Daniels doing Oberon's voice elevates the audio version to something great. Daniel's Oberon doing a Pickup Truck commercial-voice over killed me -- how Luke Daniels could read this whole book in that voice, I'll never know. It must've required a lot of takes and more recovery time than you'd want to think about.
If you've read an Iron Druid Chronicle or two, you'll know how good Oberon can be. Get this -- you'll squee.