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The Chapel Perilous

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Out of print. Originally published in 2013 in the Unfettered anthology edited by Shawn Speakman, now offered singly with cover art by Galen Dara. Ancient Druid Atticus O’Sullivan has had plenty of adventures during his long life, and in “The Chapel Perilous” he shares one of them with his apprentice, Granuaile. He lays out the true story of the quest for the Holy Grail, Out of print. Originally published in 2013 in the Unfettered anthology edited by Shawn Speakman, now offered singly with cover art by Galen Dara. Ancient Druid Atticus O’Sullivan has had plenty of adventures during his long life, and in “The Chapel Perilous” he shares one of them with his apprentice, Granuaile. He lays out the true story of the quest for the Holy Grail, in which he was personally involved—and the events of which are quite different from the Christian tale most people know today. While on an errand for Ogma to recover the Dagda’s Cauldron, Atticus confronts evil at a mysterious chapel, takes the first steps to becoming the Iron Druid, and learns the shocking truth about goblin fashion choices. He was, of course, in terrible peril.


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Out of print. Originally published in 2013 in the Unfettered anthology edited by Shawn Speakman, now offered singly with cover art by Galen Dara. Ancient Druid Atticus O’Sullivan has had plenty of adventures during his long life, and in “The Chapel Perilous” he shares one of them with his apprentice, Granuaile. He lays out the true story of the quest for the Holy Grail, Out of print. Originally published in 2013 in the Unfettered anthology edited by Shawn Speakman, now offered singly with cover art by Galen Dara. Ancient Druid Atticus O’Sullivan has had plenty of adventures during his long life, and in “The Chapel Perilous” he shares one of them with his apprentice, Granuaile. He lays out the true story of the quest for the Holy Grail, in which he was personally involved—and the events of which are quite different from the Christian tale most people know today. While on an errand for Ogma to recover the Dagda’s Cauldron, Atticus confronts evil at a mysterious chapel, takes the first steps to becoming the Iron Druid, and learns the shocking truth about goblin fashion choices. He was, of course, in terrible peril.

30 review for The Chapel Perilous

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    The Iron Druid tells a story. Hounded was first published in 2011 and introduced Atticus O'Sullivan, also known as Siodhachan O Suileabhain, an ancient druid who owns an occult bookstore in Arizona but recounts ancient heroics over a great and lengthy lifetime. The Chapel Perilous was first published in 2014 and allows Atticus to recount his experience in the quest for the Holy Grail – but from a revisionist standpoint: according to Atticus, his earlier pagan, druidic quest for the legendary Dagda The Iron Druid tells a story. Hounded was first published in 2011 and introduced Atticus O'Sullivan, also known as Siodhachan O Suileabhain, an ancient druid who owns an occult bookstore in Arizona but recounts ancient heroics over a great and lengthy lifetime. The Chapel Perilous was first published in 2014 and allows Atticus to recount his experience in the quest for the Holy Grail – but from a revisionist standpoint: according to Atticus, his earlier pagan, druidic quest for the legendary Dagda’s Cauldron was later retold from a Christian perspective. Reading between the lines I can see that this may be a recurring theme in the series. Told with humor and a gamer’s eye for adventurous detail, the Iron Druid is a character I will visit again. Very entertaining and a must read for that odd niche of the fantasy genre who likes stories from the druidic past.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Cyndi

    Atticus as a Knight of the Round Table in search of the Grail? What could be better? How about if we add zombies? Yes!! Genius!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sandy

    "Tell me a story". Many fish tales have been created in response to that request but if you're a druid of a certain age, you don't have to make stuff up....you've lived it. Sitting around a campfire one night, Oberon & Granuaile ask Atticus for a bedtime story from his past (well....actually, Oberon asked for snacks but a juicy tale will hold him 'til the marshmallows are done). So Atticus tells them of how he rescued the Holy Grail when he was just a garden variety druid, not yet bound to cold ir "Tell me a story". Many fish tales have been created in response to that request but if you're a druid of a certain age, you don't have to make stuff up....you've lived it. Sitting around a campfire one night, Oberon & Granuaile ask Atticus for a bedtime story from his past (well....actually, Oberon asked for snacks but a juicy tale will hold him 'til the marshmallows are done). So Atticus tells them of how he rescued the Holy Grail when he was just a garden variety druid, not yet bound to cold iron. The year is 537 & he went by the name of Gawain. The "grail" is actually Dagda's Cauldron, a large vessel capable of supplying a constant source of food, kind of a portable all-you-can-eat-forever-buffet. It was stolen by one of those creepy Picts & Ogma asks Gawain to retrieve it. If he does (2 other druids have failed....PERIL! PERIL!), Ogma will help him hide from his perma-nemesis, Aenghus Og. Seems like a deal. He has to cope with scary dead guys, bad weather & a smartass horse who suffers from paranoia (but can be bribed with...you guessed it...snacks). If you're a fan, this short story will provide you with the laughs you've come to expect due to the author's penchant for putting his own hilarious spin on ancient mythology. But it's also evident how much research Hearne has done just as in his other books that illustrate a vast knowledge of Norse & Celtic lore. Love this series.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    This was an interesting short story about Atticus's quest for the holy grail in 537 AD, before it was either holy or a grail -- it was "Dagda’s Cauldron, one of the Four Treasures of the Tuatha Dé Danann, which could feed an army and never empty" in the story -- as told by Atticus around a campfire to Granuaile and Oberon. Also interesting, to me at least, was the author's motivation to write the story, which can be found on his blog here, and his results of self publishing it, which can also be This was an interesting short story about Atticus's quest for the holy grail in 537 AD, before it was either holy or a grail -- it was "Dagda’s Cauldron, one of the Four Treasures of the Tuatha Dé Danann, which could feed an army and never empty" in the story -- as told by Atticus around a campfire to Granuaile and Oberon. Also interesting, to me at least, was the author's motivation to write the story, which can be found on his blog here, and his results of self publishing it, which can also be found on his blog here.

  5. 5 out of 5

    SheLove2Read

    As Oberon would say, "Tell me a story, Atticus". This is a short tale from Atticus' past, set in very early Briton during the time of the Celts. Atticus agrees to retrieve the legendary Dagda’s Cauldron, which was stolen from the Tuatha Dé Danann, and in exchange he will be shown how to shift to the proto-American continent to escape another Fae who wants him dead. I really enjoyed this interlude from his past. It gives you a sense of who he was and how he has become the Druid he is today, and a As Oberon would say, "Tell me a story, Atticus". This is a short tale from Atticus' past, set in very early Briton during the time of the Celts. Atticus agrees to retrieve the legendary Dagda’s Cauldron, which was stolen from the Tuatha Dé Danann, and in exchange he will be shown how to shift to the proto-American continent to escape another Fae who wants him dead. I really enjoyed this interlude from his past. It gives you a sense of who he was and how he has become the Druid he is today, and a few laughs thrown in for good measure. I really really love this series!

  6. 4 out of 5

    ☕️Kimberly

    Once again we find ourselves enjoying a fire in the wilderness with Granuaile, Oberon, and Atticus. Over marshmallows, he shares the story of the holy grail originally known to him as Dagda’s Cauldron. Atticus claims that the story is a Celtic Druid story that was twisted through time. I enjoyed Hearne's tale about the grail but loved the tidbits about the elemental, the iron around Atticus's neck and his inspiration for his charms and future companions. This tale may only be thirty-three pages l Once again we find ourselves enjoying a fire in the wilderness with Granuaile, Oberon, and Atticus. Over marshmallows, he shares the story of the holy grail originally known to him as Dagda’s Cauldron. Atticus claims that the story is a Celtic Druid story that was twisted through time. I enjoyed Hearne's tale about the grail but loved the tidbits about the elemental, the iron around Atticus's neck and his inspiration for his charms and future companions. This tale may only be thirty-three pages long, but boy did it pack a wallop. The year is 537AD, and Atticus calls himself Gawain. Dagda’s Cauldron is one of the Four Treasures of the Tuatha Dé Danann and reported to feed an Army and never empty. Gawain (Atticus) travels with a horse named Apple Jack to retrieve the "holy grail" Apple Jack could use speech like Oberon would decades later and their conversations were hilarious. I would love to have spent more time with this horse. The tale that unfolds has them traveling in rain, being attacked by an evil force at an old church and meeting the Fish King before he faces off with an evil entity. This review was originally posted at Caffeinated Reviewer

  7. 4 out of 5

    Beth Cato

    Enjoyable story. But now I want more about Apple Jack, dang it.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lelia Taylor

    The adventures of Atticus and his faithful hound, Oberon, have entertained me mightily since the very first book, Hounded (although I’m a little less enthused with the most recent one, Shattered) and the accompanying novellas and short stories are always fun, too. The Chapel Perilous continues the tradition. The whole idea of a Holy Grail that isn’t quite the same Holy Grail we all know about is wonderful, made even more so because it’s set way back before Atticus became the Iron Druid with so mu The adventures of Atticus and his faithful hound, Oberon, have entertained me mightily since the very first book, Hounded (although I’m a little less enthused with the most recent one, Shattered) and the accompanying novellas and short stories are always fun, too. The Chapel Perilous continues the tradition. The whole idea of a Holy Grail that isn’t quite the same Holy Grail we all know about is wonderful, made even more so because it’s set way back before Atticus became the Iron Druid with so much power. There’s not a lot of Oberon in this story and, since I adore him, that made me a little sad at first but then this other critter shows up that had me laughing out loud. Apple Jack is worth the story all by himself and, even if you’ve never read any of the chronicles, you can still enjoy this fellow. Is this short story as engaging as the novels? No, of course not, as it’s not possible to have much depth in such a few pages but it’s a nice fill-in between books.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Andreas

    Very entertaining retake of 6th century Sir Gawain's quest for the grail - this time with a druid as knight, a necromantic pict laying waste to the Fisher King's empire. In fact, the grail's legend is founded in celtic mythology and this is a loosely derived but excellently told story. The frame story starts with the same druid in contemporary U.S. telling his intelligent dog and his apprentice this story. This modern, "cool" language gives the epic quest a funny side note which I liked. And the Very entertaining retake of 6th century Sir Gawain's quest for the grail - this time with a druid as knight, a necromantic pict laying waste to the Fisher King's empire. In fact, the grail's legend is founded in celtic mythology and this is a loosely derived but excellently told story. The frame story starts with the same druid in contemporary U.S. telling his intelligent dog and his apprentice this story. This modern, "cool" language gives the epic quest a funny side note which I liked. And there is this sidekick horse AppleJack which is wise in its own way, always holding back the druid's cockiness. I'll put Hearne's series start Hounded on my tbr shelf - this is Atticus's origin story and how he came to his cold iron amulet and the silver charms on his necklace as well as his inspiration to teach languages to animals (like to his dog Oberon).

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ami

    2.5 stars Unfortunately, I find this short story forgettable. Or maybe I read it on a wrong mood or something. The 'talking' horse feels like a substitute for Oberon (do we need another talking animal). I end up not really caring about the whole Holy Grail quest. Again, maybe reading this in wrong mood, but I feel like other short stories from this series as more interesting. This just came as big MEH for me. 2.5 stars Unfortunately, I find this short story forgettable. Or maybe I read it on a wrong mood or something. The 'talking' horse feels like a substitute for Oberon (do we need another talking animal). I end up not really caring about the whole Holy Grail quest. Again, maybe reading this in wrong mood, but I feel like other short stories from this series as more interesting. This just came as big MEH for me.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    I fun short backstory from the Iron Druid Chronicles, featuring Atticus retelling his version of the real search for the "Holy" Grail and Sir Gawain....which according to him is really a Celtic Druid story that was twisted into its modern version over the years of storytelling. Fun story, and also some insight into why Atticus started making charms and teaching his animal companions language. Thanks Apple Jack! I fun short backstory from the Iron Druid Chronicles, featuring Atticus retelling his version of the real search for the "Holy" Grail and Sir Gawain....which according to him is really a Celtic Druid story that was twisted into its modern version over the years of storytelling. Fun story, and also some insight into why Atticus started making charms and teaching his animal companions language. Thanks Apple Jack!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Vic

    I enjoyed the very short story in the Iron Druid world. If you enjoy reading about the adventures of Atticus and enjoy a very small contribution by his apprentice and faithful companion Oberon, you'll probably enjoy the quick read as well. At $.99 for the kindle version, was well worth my hour of enjoyment. I enjoyed the very short story in the Iron Druid world. If you enjoy reading about the adventures of Atticus and enjoy a very small contribution by his apprentice and faithful companion Oberon, you'll probably enjoy the quick read as well. At $.99 for the kindle version, was well worth my hour of enjoyment.

  13. 4 out of 5

    David

    When I heard there was a new short story of our favorite druid, I just had to read it and to my surprise Mr Hearne never ceases to make Atticus O'Sullivan's adventures as action packed and full of mythology as always this is definitely a must read before "Shattered" is released. When I heard there was a new short story of our favorite druid, I just had to read it and to my surprise Mr Hearne never ceases to make Atticus O'Sullivan's adventures as action packed and full of mythology as always this is definitely a must read before "Shattered" is released.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    I love it when Atticus plays the bard, a nice twist on the green knight, chapel and grael lore! Very nice! if you have the chance pick this up, always fun to read a tale told by the Seanachie Hearne!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Debrac2014

    Great read! This is Hearne's take on the Holy Grail! Great read! This is Hearne's take on the Holy Grail!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Awesome backstory on Atticus' history and why he always has talking animals. Awesome backstory on Atticus' history and why he always has talking animals.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lara

    Fun story about the 'making of a legend.' Fun story about the 'making of a legend.'

  18. 5 out of 5

    Timothy Boyd

    Another great short story in this series. This one give you a nice glimpse of the life of the main character before the main story line takes place. Highly recommended

  19. 4 out of 5

    Steve Naylor

    Rating 4.5 Only downside is that is a little short, but then again it is a short story.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bart

    Actual rating: 3.25

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sydney Mugerwa

    Aww, Kevin, Kevin, Kevin. How I love your writing voice. It's so deep and witty and wise and fills up the spaces between my ears. How I love Oberon and Atticus and the World Building. The Chapel Perilous and is short but so perfect in so many ways. The characters are so alive, so filling, so perfect. It's a shame the series took a turn for the worse when they did. I wish you could call back the last volume or two and rewrite it for your fans sake. It was a wrecking ball. This is a love-hate rela Aww, Kevin, Kevin, Kevin. How I love your writing voice. It's so deep and witty and wise and fills up the spaces between my ears. How I love Oberon and Atticus and the World Building. The Chapel Perilous and is short but so perfect in so many ways. The characters are so alive, so filling, so perfect. It's a shame the series took a turn for the worse when they did. I wish you could call back the last volume or two and rewrite it for your fans sake. It was a wrecking ball. This is a love-hate relationship right here. I love you, man!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Novellas, fun but quite short. The Iron Druid Chronicles was recommended so I tried out a small sampling. And I like them! 2000 year old Druid still on Earth, practicing his form of magic. He's tied to nature and benevolent. But not everyone else shares his love of nature/humanity so then he has to get down and dirty. Novellas, fun but quite short. The Iron Druid Chronicles was recommended so I tried out a small sampling. And I like them! 2000 year old Druid still on Earth, practicing his form of magic. He's tied to nature and benevolent. But not everyone else shares his love of nature/humanity so then he has to get down and dirty.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lee

    Fun addition to the Iron Druid Chronicles A story out of Atticus's past, shared with Oberon and Granuaile during her apprenticeship, a re-imagining of the Holy Grail given its original pagan past. Not necessary to the storyline of the series, it is a fun little jaunt into their world. Fun addition to the Iron Druid Chronicles A story out of Atticus's past, shared with Oberon and Granuaile during her apprenticeship, a re-imagining of the Holy Grail given its original pagan past. Not necessary to the storyline of the series, it is a fun little jaunt into their world.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Georgene

    A quick, but entertaining short story featuring a much younger Atticus, the immortal Druid. This story explores the origins of the Grail stories with an imagined one of its own. Atticus is asked to regain a never empty cauldron which was stolen from an Irish goddess. He crosses the landscape from England into Wales and takes on an evil sorcerer with some help from a talking horse.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Joe Hurd

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Fun story. Apple Jack the talking horse really kept to character. Apple Jack: "Just one more thing, When I smell things that scare me. You have to either kill them or let me run away." Apple Jack: part of his description on goblins. "They wear horsehide leather, Me hide leather" "Lets get out of here" Fun story. Apple Jack the talking horse really kept to character. Apple Jack: "Just one more thing, When I smell things that scare me. You have to either kill them or let me run away." Apple Jack: part of his description on goblins. "They wear horsehide leather, Me hide leather" "Lets get out of here"

  26. 4 out of 5

    Andy Hanson

    Fun but a little anti-clamatic For being a story about the legend of the Holy Frigging Grail, I expected a little more at the finish, at least a tougher fight for the Iron Druid. Love Kevin Hearne and thus series though.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Katherine

    Fun little companion story to the Iron Druid Chronicles. Attitcus tells Granuaile and Oberon a story from his early Druid days and claims that this adventure ultimately became the basis for the many Grail stories of Christianity. Recommended for anyone who is a fan of the Iron Druid series.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    A immersive short story from Shawn Speaksman's "Unfettered". After this first acquaintance with Atticus I immediately wanted more and started reading Kevin Hearne's series "The Iron Druid Chronicles"! A immersive short story from Shawn Speaksman's "Unfettered". After this first acquaintance with Atticus I immediately wanted more and started reading Kevin Hearne's series "The Iron Druid Chronicles"!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Darlene

    Short but good You need to red the Iron Druid chronicles before starting this story or you’ll be ridiculously lost. If you’ve found and enjoyed the tales of the Druid, you’ll enjoy this glimpse of how a man becomes a myth.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    Fun read A fun short read. I enjoy his writing style. I don't know why they require a certain amount of words for reviews. Fun read A fun short read. I enjoy his writing style. I don't know why they require a certain amount of words for reviews.

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