THE RUNAWAY by Kate O'Hearn


From the "Valkyrie" series, volume 2
Age Range: 8 - 12
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When war threatens the nine realms, Odin sends Freya, a young Valkyrie, and Archie, her human friend, to Midgard to rescue Brünnhilde, a runaway hero of legend.

Freya is determined not to fail, but when Azrael, the Angel of Death, reveals the true nature of their mission, she must decide whether to follow orders or fight for what is right. She knows that exposing Odin’s dark secret would reunite families, but it could also weaken Midgard against an attack by the allied fire and frost giants. Humans, Valkyries, Dark Searchers, and even the gods themselves must find a way to work together if they are to thwart the traitorous plot and preserve peace in the realms. Uneven pacing and unsubstantiated plot moves hamper this twist on Norse mythology, sequel to Valkyrie (2016). However, Freya’s focus on family and desire to do the right thing against the odds and tradition will resonate with readers. Fans of the Marvel Comics retellings will enjoy both the new look at familiar characters as well as the accompanying notes that reveal the myths behind the stories. (Notably absent from this section is the Hebraic Azrael.)

Though far from perfect, an improvement over the first outing. (Fantasy. 8-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 10th, 2017
ISBN: 978-14814-4740-9
Page count: 368pp
Publisher: Aladdin
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2016


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