Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Melding of Geology and Mythology, 11 Aug. 2009
This review is from: Ice Land (Paperback)
Ice Land is an interesting twist of the historical novel form. Betsy Tobin attempts to bring together many different aspects of the history of Iceland through the characters of Freya, fulla, and Dvalin - goddess, mortal, and dwarf (half-breed), respectively.

Frey pursues the Brisingamen, Fulla is caught up in a feud, and Dvalin is torn between worlds. Eventually, the story reveals how their three lives are intertwined in more ways than one. In the background, Mount Helka builds up to an eruption that changes everything for everyone.

I only had two problems with this book:
1) the Norns are used to present mini geology lessons between chapters:
"The crust it encounters is not seamless, but a series of curved plates that fit together like a puzzle."

and, 2) the Norse gods are portrayed as incestuous and dysfunctional as the Greek pantheon. While the Aesir and Vanir had their issues, I felt that Tobin took a lot of liberties with Odin and the rest.

If you would like another historical book with the adventures of a strong Norse woman, read The Far Traveler: Voyages of a Viking Woman. However, for more information about Norse mythology and traditions, I strongly suggest Myths of the Norsemen: From the Eddas and Sagas and Myth and Religion of the North: The Religion of Ancient Scandinavia.
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