‘A light-hearted romp through Norse mythology’. @TerryTyler4 reviews Why Odin Drinks by @bjornlarssen

Today’s team review is from Terry. She blogs here https://terrytylerbookreviews.blogspot.com/

Rosie's #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Terry has been reading Why Odin Drinks by Bjørn Larssen

4 out of 5 stars

I read the first episode of Bjørn Larssen’s (very) alternative Norse mythology, Creation, which is now incorporated into this book – this is good, because I was able to re-read it before embarking on the confused All-Father’s further adventures.

I think I would need to know a lot more about Norse mythology than I do in order to fully appreciate this, though I did look up bits and bobs here and there, which helped.  The idea of portraying Odin as rather hesitant and not quite sure of his role as ultimate creator, is inspired.  Problem is that he and all the other gods (and versions of Odin in the past, present and future) know about everything that will be (which seems logical, what with them being deities), but are not always sure whether items or concepts actually exist yet.  Like Odin’s wife Frigg not being sure what a miniskirt is, but knowing she wants one. 

‘What sort of tea will you have?”They haven’t discovered it yet,’ said Urðr.  ‘He looks like the lapsang souchong type to me, though.’One of my favourite aspects was the occasional presence of ‘literature’. 

She is an entity that whispers to Odin’s mind a piece of information pertaining to something that has just been said, such as ‘Loki is foreshadowing‘, but Odin cannot see her; he just hears the sound of her sneakers as she sprints away.  I love that.

In parts 2-4 we meet many more gods – Loki, Freya and Freyr, and Frigg.  Freya, goddess of love, beauty, fertility, sex, war and gold (pretty much all the most important things to a Norseman, one imagines) is portrayed as a sort of Paris Hilton type, which I thought was genius.

‘As he travelled, Odin thoroughly investigated people of all shapes and sizes, casually letting it slip that he was the All-Father’.

Some of the time the references went over my head because of my lack of knowledge of the subject, though other times I felt the prose needed a bit of tightening up; it seemed to career away with itself now and again.  However, the good is very very good, and I also liked the pertinent observations about life and death, time and war, woven amongst the ridiculousness.  And the ending.  Clever.
A light-hearted romp through Norse mythology, and a fitting development for Bjørn Larssen’s comedic talent!

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Ever woken up being a God, but not knowing how to God properly?

Poor Odin must restrain his brothers, who create offensive weapons such as mosquitoes and celery; placate his future-telling wife, Frigg, who demands sweatpants with pockets; listen to Loki’s Helpful Questions; hang himself from Yggdrasil for nine days with a spear through his side (as you do); teach everyone about nutritional values of kale (but NOT celery); meet a Wise Dom, Sir Daddy Mímir, in order to outwit those who outwit him; and, most importantly, prove he is The All-Father, while his brothers are, at best, Those-Uncles-We-Don’t-Talk-About.

This nearly (except in Vanaheim) universally acclaimed retelling of the Gods’ first millennium answers way too many questions, including ones on Freyr’s entendre, horse designing… and why Odin drinks. 

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‘Gods in a place that as yet has nothing’. @GeorgiaRoseBook Reviews Creation by Bjørn Larssen @bjornlarssen, For Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Today’s team review is from Georgia. She blogs here https://www.georgiarosebooks.com

Rosie's #Bookreview Team #RBRT

Georgia has been reading Creation by Bjørn Larssen

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This book tells the tale of Odin waking up along with his two brothers, Vili and Vé, to find themselves Gods in a place that as yet has nothing. It should be a terrific opportunity to create loads of cool stuff, you’d think. However, Odin, and his brothers, have no idea what they are doing and come up with random things such as celery and mosquitoes instead. (I mean, who would ever choose to invent either of those!)

When Odin does manage to create something useful, a cow. They have no idea how to get milk out of it and the cow doesn’t hang around for long.

Creation is a short book and a pacey read. I enjoyed the humour and Larssen’s writing throughout and look forward to seeing what comes next.

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In the beginning there was confusion.

Ever woken up being a God, but not knowing how to God properly? Your brothers keep creating mosquitoes and celery and other, more threatening weapons. What can your ultimate answer be – the one that will make you THE All-Father and them, at best, the All-Those-Uncles-We-Don’t-Talk-About?

“FML! That answer’s why I drink!” – Odin

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‘With a focus on Norse mythology’, Rosie’s #Bookreview of Dark #UrbanFantasy Beneath the Veil by Martin Kearns

Beneath the VeilBeneath the Veil by Martin Kearns

3.5 stars

Beneath the Veil is a dark urban fantasy story set in the US, book one of the Valor of Valhalla series. It opens with the dramatic aftermath of a road bridge collapse; David’s car is sinking into the Hudson river.

Watching the episode are a pair of supernatural beings; events get stranger when David is found upstream.  He is taken to hospital but remains in a coma.

David’s girlfriend Rose works as a waitress; her shift is unusually quiet, but one customer is eating his way through the menu. When his behaviour turns nasty, horrors erupt which few could have anticipated. All around strange incidents are happening and people are disappearing.

David’s coma is also unnatural as he is gaining muscle and height, and his vital signs have the doctors excited about new medical history data.

The story provides the reader with a great mix of mythology and the supernatural, with a focus on Norse mythology. The narrative goes between David’s story from his position in a coma and the ‘real-world’ for his mother Chelsea, Rose and a retired detective. Of the two parts, I found that I preferred David’s adventures as they followed the mythological path, where the real world setting tended towards the horror genre.

I liked the Valhalla scenes particularly, while some of the journey to that point got a bit tedious. I wasn’t a fan of the constant mentioning of shows, films and books because I hadn’t seen or read them, so certain references meant nothing to me. A few times I thought that David came across as rather too perfect; even a hero needs to stay believable.  However, these were just small issues.

Overall, a good start to a series and one recommended for fans of Norse mythology.

View all my reviews

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In a battle between two ancient evils, can one naïve young man become the last hope against powerful creatures of legend?

David Dolan thinks he’s already got the world figured out. But when a collapsed bridge plunges him into the icy Hudson, he’s pulled deep into the deadly realm that exists between life and death. And with his earthly form trapped in a coma, he’s vulnerable to the horde of demons hell-bent on his utter destruction.

Traversing the road to the afterlife, David seeks the wisdom and skills he needs to fight the demonic forces reigning havoc on his allies above ground. But as one hellish threat closes in on his defenseless body, David must defeat another terrifying fiend waiting in the shadows to use him…

Can David escape the world beneath the veil in time to stop the bloodshed?

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