Monday, October 29, 2012

Book Review: Valkyrie Rising

Goodreads summary:

Nothing ever happens in Norway. But at least Ellie knows what to expect when she visits her grandmother: a tranquil fishing village and long, slow summer days. And maybe she’ll finally get out from under the shadow of her way-too-perfect big brother, Graham, while she’s there.

What Ellie doesn’t anticipate is Graham’s infuriating best friend, Tuck, tagging along for the trip. Nor did she imagine boys going missing amid rumors of impossible kidnappings. Least of all does she expect something powerful and ancient to awaken in her and that strange whispers would urge Ellie to claim her place among mythological warriors. Instead of peace and quiet, there’s suddenly a lot for a girl from L.A. to handle on a summer sojourn in Norway! And when Graham vanishes, it’s up to Ellie—and the ever-sarcastic, if undeniably alluring Tuck—to uncover the truth about all the disappearances and thwart the nefarious plan behind them.

Deadly legends, hidden identities, and tentative romance swirl together in one girl’s unexpectedly-epic coming of age.

My review:

I completely loved Valkyrie Rising.  It's been on my to-read shelf since I saw it on Goodreads in April.  Believe me, this book was worth the wait.  I adored everything about Valkyrie Rising!

First off, the characters.  Anyone who reads my reviews knows that characters can either make or break a story for me.  And oh, I loooove the characters in this story.  Tucker, Tucker, Tucker.  He is my new book boyfriend. :) You can't help falling in love with him along with Ellie.  His funny comments and sarcasm made me crack up numerous times.  But there were also moments when we see a more serious (yet just as lovable!) side of him that is sweet and tender.  He's such an unforgettable character.  Totally swoon-worthy.

And Ellie!  She's a great narrator, and what I loved about her was her character arc.  Though she is slightly shy and quiet, she grows into a strong, brave heroine who isn't afraid to back down.  She had lots of character growth, and she stands up for herself and fights for what she believes in.  Ellie is exactly the type of girl that I would be friends with in real life.  I loved her! 

Of course, I've got to mention Loki, the god of mischief.  He's one of my favorite gods in Norse mythology, and I fully admit that I started squealing and fangirling when his character showed up in the book.  (Yes, I love Loki.  Yes, I know he's a bad guy.  But he's just misunderstood!)  I loved his wit and humor.  Ingrid Paulson wrote his character so well.  He was definitely a fantastic addition to the story!

The plot was amazing.  I've fallen in love with Norse mythology recently, and I seriously wish there were more YA books with Norse mythology!  It's so interesting to read about.  Valkyrie Rising does a great job of immersing you in that world.  I loved the descriptions of Norway, Odin, and the Valkyries.  All of it was perfect.  I especially loved the final battle scene with Odin! 

Also, I loved the ending.  It felt complete, and yet it still hinted that there could be a future sequel.  As far as I know, Valkyrie Rising is a standalone.  But can I just say, I would love to read more books about Ellie and Tuck. :) I can't wait to read more of Ingrid Paulson's books in the future!  She is an incredible storyteller.

My rating:  10 out of 10

~ The Bookworm

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