Raven: Sons of Thunder – Giles Kristian

This is number two in the Raven series. There are three out (so far), Giles has moved on, but may return. As I have an aversion to hardback books (an environmentally damaging waste of paper, waste of bookshelf space, etc), I’m still waiting for the paperback version of the third, so I don’t know if that will be the last in the story, or if it will continue on.

You don’t need to have read the first book, Raven: Blood Eye, to enjoy this one, but it helps. The story is pretty well self-contained, as the band of Vikings have moved from England to France in their pursuit of the English lord who betrayed them and of course, in pursuit of treasure, silver and adventure.

You pretty much know what you’re getting with this sort of book (like with Robert Low’s Oathsworn series). This doesn’t let the side down and, as with Robert Low’s Viking series, this deserves to be compared with Bernard Cornwell’s current Viking series.

Giles Kristian has a relaxed, easy to read writing style. He clearly knows his stuff, his Scandinavian languages (living in Denmark and speaking Danish every day, I’m well-placed to confirm that) and he clearly knows his Viking religion. In fact, the whole book here is surely a speculation (has to be a speculation, as the written evidence isn’t available), as to how much the Viking world and their actions were dependent on, their views of, their gods’ desires and whims.

I can thoroughly recommend the Odin’s Wolves series and I’m looking forward to the next one coming out in paperback ASAP.

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