Author: Ingrid Paulson
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Length: 352 Pages
Release: October 2012
I'll be honest. The main reason I read Valkyrie Rising is for the alphabet challenge I am trying to complete this year. (A book title for every letter of the alphabet.) When a friend recommended it (because I had no V), I decided to give it a try. It sounded like it might be fun.
While urban fantasy in general is not a genre that I really love, I did find this story fun. Ellie travels to Norway for the summer, expecting the same quiet trip she's had before. But ancient myths are coming alive and Ellie is right in the middle of them.
All of the characters in this were fairly enjoyable. Ellie's progression throughout was a little unbelievable, but she was an alright character. The relationship she had with her brother was really nice. I would have liked to see more of their evolving relationship, where Ellie was taking more control of her own life, but this was written as the start of a series, so maybe book two (if it ever comes to be) will delve more deeply into that side of their sibling dynamic.
Tuck was by far my favorite part of the story. He was fun, sassy, a little cliche, but really likable. He has a twisted family life (though we don't get many details) and puts on an "I don't care" act. Watching him and Ellie with each other was pretty fun, though the overall romance in this was very predictable. It still had it's sweet moments.
The setting in Norway was great. There were never any great details about the country, but knowing that it was set there was a plus. The towns that were described sounded interesting. Having never visited, I don't know if these descriptions were accurate or not, but I enjoyed them nonetheless.
The overall story with Ellie finding out about her heritage and the existence of gods and Valkyrie, while not my normal reading taste, kept me interested. It probably would have helped my enjoyment if I were more versed in Norse mythology, but I found all of the old traditions and superstitions interesting.
Overall this was enjoyable and I would consider reading the sequel if it ever comes to be. The ending was closed enough that the series doesn't have to continue, but open enough for many possibilities.