Friday, January 4, 2013

Valkyrie Rising by Ingrid Paulson

From HarperTeen:

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 that something powerful and ancient will awaken in her and that strange whispers will urge Ellie to claim her place among mythological warriors. Instead of peace and quiet, suddenly there's 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.

I found Valkyrie Rising to be fascinating.  I am not nearly as familiar with Norse Mythology as I am with the Greeks, so this was fairly new territory for me and Paulson made it worth my time.  The premise was familiar, but fantastically executed, a young girl discovering that she is a part of an ancient mythological race of warriors and coming into her power.  The characters, twists and turns, myths – all of it was seamlessly integrated into Paulson’s version of Norse Myths. 


In my humble opinion, Ingrid Paulson is a strong new talent to watch.  Valkyrie Rising was *this* close to making my Top Ten list for 2012 and I look forward to reading whatever she comes up with next. 



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