A diminutive green Viking who makes music instead of war is the eventual hero of this small saga.
Three Vikings, an orange man with a beard (the “strongest”), a blue woman with purplish hair (the “bravest”), and a small green Viking boy, all wearing the requisite helmets with horns, want to enter Valhalla, “the magical place where the strongest and bravest Vikings go.” During their ensuing adventures, the smallest Viking works hard to show the others that he has what it takes to enter Odin’s magical hall, but he usually comes up short. First the trio confronts “an ornery troll,” then a kraken, and then a dragon. With each monster, the littlest Viking tries to use music to save the day, but the strongest and the bravest Vikings must step in. When they finally reach their goal, however, the smallest Viking finds his niche: There are no musicians among the multicolored inhabitants of Valhalla. Just as in Leo Lionni’s Frederick, the warriors “had been waiting for just the right Viking to come along and fill their days with music and stories.” Bold, humorous cartoon illustrations, created with pen and ink, watercolor, and digital color, will hold the interest of group listeners. The message that the arts are as important as fighting is a positive one.
Youngsters may want to learn more about Norse lore after reading this pleasant tale. (Picture book. 5-7)