Icefall

 
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Icefall

Solveig wonders if winter will trap them in the mountain fort, waiting for word that her father has defeated an attacking king, listening to the glacier creak, worrying, worrying.

The king had sent her, her young brother the crown prince, and her older sister Asa away from the battle for their safety. When his best warriors arrive to protect them in the hidden fortress, Solveig knows that the berserkers would rather be fighting alongside her father instead of guarding them as the fjord ices over.

As the cold nights grow longer, the king’s storyteller gives them tales of the gods and of great battles. The skald finds that Solveig has an ear for story and a memory for detail – would she like to learn the storytelling arts? Finally, something worthwhile for this middle child – not pretty enough to marry off to forge an alliance, not a boy to be a warrior-prince.

A sudden outbreak of illness in the fort – a curse? Poison? The plague? Secrets told, promises broken, tempers flaring among the restless warriors. Will their father triumph over the invader who tried to steal Asa as his bride instead of negotiating? Will young prince Harald survive the winter? Will any of them?

A story from the days when storytellers kept history and hope alive through their ballads and odes, Icefall brings readers to the glacier’s edge, watching with Solveig over the stormy sea, hoping that the sails in the distance bring news of victory instead of danger.

Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA

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