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Title: Northern Wrath (#1 The Hanged God Trilogy)
Author: Thilde Kold Holdt
Published: 27th of October 2020 – Solaris / Rebellion Publishing
Format: eARC (NetGalley) and Audiobook (Audible) – 616 pages
Hello Hello ! How are you?
Today I’m back with a mini review on my blog, for the first book in The Hanged God Trilogy by Thilde Kold Holdt, currently on #BlogTour with Dave and the team from @The_WriteReads.
I’ve not read any epic fantasy in a long time and I love fantasy series, so when I found out about this tour, I knew I needed to give this series a try. By the way, I signed up for a review of all 3 of these books, but they are a lot longer than I anticipated and I’m having to listen to the audiobooks, so bear with me if my reviews of books 2 and 3 aren’t up straight away.
Thank you as always to Dave for letting me be part of this tour. And thank you to the author and the publisher for providing me with free copies of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
Following in the steps of Neil Gaiman & Joanne Harris, the author expertly weaves Norse myths and compelling characters into this fierce, magical epic fantasy.
A dead man, walking between the worlds, foresees the end of the gods.
A survivor searching for a weapon releases a demon from fiery Muspelheim.
A village is slaughtered by Christians, and revenge must be taken.
The bonds between the gods and Midgard are weakening. It is up to Hilda, Ragnar, their tribesmen Einer and Finn, the chief’s wife Siv and Tyra, her adopted daughter, to fight to save the old ways from dying out, and to save their gods in the process.
Trigger warnings: violence, war, killings, raiding, gore, blood, corpses, dead (of all ages), battle (very vivid), injuries, injuries to eyes (very vivid), treason/betrayal, theft.
Northern Wrath by Thilde Kold Holdt is the first book in The Hanged God trilogy, which is an epic fantasy, historical mythology series. I loved the sound of this book and this series when I read about the tour, and although the first book took me a long time to read, I did really enjoy it.
I love anything with mythology and it was so interesting delving into this world with Vikings and Norse mythology. I didn’t know much about this mythology going in, and while some bits were a bit confusing until I grasped them fully, it was all really entertaining and interesting.
There were a lot of characters in this book and I usually really like multiple POVs, but there were a lot in this book. I couldn’t tell you how many exactly because I lost count, but somewhere between 5 and 10, I think. I loved when the book went back to our main characters Einer, Hilda, Siv and Tyra as those were my favourites; but all of the chapters were really intriguing and kept me reading.
I did however have to move over to the audiobook format about 30% in because I realised it was taking me a really long time to read in ebook format. The narrator of the audiobook was okay, not the best I’ve heard, but definitely not the worst. I think this would have had massive potential with a full cast because some of the voices were a bit dodgy in my opinion, but this shouldn’t reflect negatively on the book at all, it’s just me mentioning it quickly!
I loved the world this book is set in and I can tell that it’s got such massive potential and I have a feeling that things will go much further in the subsequent books. It is a very well developed and executed world, and the magic system based on Norse mythology is amazing. I hadn’t ever read anything like this where the magic system is based on runes linked to gods, but it was so engaging and I was hooked from the start.
Despite it being a really, really chunky book and a bit slow to read in digital format, I thought it had a really good pace and flow. The action was definitely very fast-paced and I never had a minute of boredom. I also think that since it jumps from one character to the next in each chapter, you don’t get time to wonder what will happen next, as there are so many threads you want to follow and know where they lead. So I suppose that even though I would have preferred a few less POVs, they do work really well with this story and this world.
Finally, the writing style is so good. It has a really nice flow to it and I was able to read the written word and also listen to it, and in both instances I thought the writing was very solid and enjoyable. Sometimes with epic fantasy I do worry that it will become a bit too flowery or a bit far-fetched, but I never got that kind of impression from this story as it is just so well written and thought-out.
MY THOUGHTS AND RATING
As you can tell, I really enjoyed this book and I am definitely going to continue this series. I had to read this first book really quickly to be able to post in time for my stop on the blog tour, but I think that I will reread it eventually in physical format if I can get my hands on them, as that’s the format I’ll appreciate it all the more.
The writing style was solid and I also enjoyed the audiobook (even though I always speed up x2.5!!), despite a few wobbly character voices, but that’s not a reflection on the book, as I mentioned above.
I gave Northern Wrath by Child Kold Holdt 4.5 stars and I am very much looking forward to continuing this series right away. I think it will have a massive world, and even more characters, but I’m so excited to find my 4 favourites again, and see where their story is going to take them.
If you love books with strong mythology (especially Norse!), very engaging and interesting epic fantasy with great world-building, characters and a writing style that flows effortlessly, then you’ve found your book! I highly recommend it!
Atmosphere – 7
Start – 7.5
Pacing – 8
Ending – 8.5
Characters – 8
Theme – 7.5
Style – 7.5
Total = 54
ABOUT THE AUTHOR – THILDE KOLD HOLDT
Thilde Kold Holdt is a Viking, traveller and a polygot fluent in Danish, French, English and Korean. As a writer, she is an avid researcher. This is how she first came to row for hours upon hours on a Viking warship. She loved the experience so much that she has sailed with the Viking ship the Sea Stallion ever since. Born in Denmark, Thilde has lived in many places and countries, taking a bit of each culture with her, and is currently based in Southern France where she writes full-time.
That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed reading my post.
See you soon, stay safe,