Children of Ragnarok

HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray. (Runestone Saga: Bk. 1). Nov. 2022. 560p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780063018686.
Gr 7 Up–This action-adventure packed with gods, demons, magic, and Norse mythology follows two 16-year-olds: Eiric, a Viking descended from gods, and Reginn, a foundling with magic. Eiric and his sister, Liv, have been found guilty of murdering their mother and stepfather following a rigged trial, and must bargain with a neighboring jarl or lose everything—including their family’s unusually bountiful farm. If they can find the mythical, magical island stronghold of witches, called wyrdspinners, the jarl will pay their blood price. Reginn has spent her life traveling and using her sorcery to perform wonders, all while being leeched by a fire demon she would do anything to escape. After a performance, wyrdspinners invite her to the academy at the Grove, the island sanctuary for sorcerers, and offer freedom from her demon. Characters converge on the Temple at the Grove, naturally tying the plotlines together. Intricately plotted so that even the twists have twists, this book is exactly as long as it needs to be and leaves readers excited for the sequel. Chima proved an expert at balancing multiple points of view and intricate plotlines with her “Seven Realms” quartet, and those skills shine here. The main cast is white, with diversity in the secondary characters.
VERDICT Infused with Norse mythos and spellbinding from start to finish, Chima’s new series should find its way into every library. Hand this to fantasy fans and younger readers aging into YA.

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