Thursday, September 15, 2016

Audiobook Review: The Sword of Summer

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Release Date: October 6, 2015
Format: Audiobook narrated by Christopher Guetig
My Rating:  1/2 

Goodreads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD

Magnus Chase has always been a troubled kid. Since his mother's mysterious death, he's lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, keeping one step ahead of the police and the truant officers.

One day, he's tracked down by an uncle he barely knows-a man his mother claimed was dangerous. Uncle Randolph tells him an impossible secret: Magnus is the son of a Norse god.

The Viking myths are true. The gods of Asgard are preparing for war. Trolls, giants and worse monsters are stirring for doomsday. To prevent Ragnarok, Magnus must search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years.

When an attack by fire giants forces him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents, Magnus makes a fatal decision.

Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die . . .
Listen, I love me some Rick Riordan, and I will probably read every mythology based book he writes. I don't care if people think he is milking the Percy Jackson series too much, I find his books to be fun adventure books and I think he does a really good job of trying to have his books be really diverse.

One of the complaints I've heard about this book was that Magnus has the exact same voice as Percy Jackson or Jason Grace, but for me that's kind of why the book appealed to me. Also, I felt like he was way more salty than the other two. Like immediately this sassy kid from the streets had me completely invested in his story and what the hell was going to happen next. Especially since he dies in the first few chapters. Don't worry that is not a spoiler, the book gets more interesting after that happens.

I know a lot about Greek mythology, but very little about Norse mythology so I found myself very invested in meeting all of these different gods & goddesses. It reminded me a lot of the video game Skyrim, as the Nords in that setting worship the Norse gods. I found it very educational, and it made me want to do my own research on Norse myths.

One thing I loved about this novel was that we have this Kurt Cobain-look alike fumbling around on a quest and along with him is this smart Muslim girl whom moonlights as a Valkyrie. I loved Samira, and I loved that she did not put up with Magnus' BS. I loved that Riordan had her actively wearing a Hijab and there is even a scene where she defends why she sometimes wears it and why she sometimes doesn't. I haven't read a lot of books with Muslim characters, which is something I want to change, so I was excited to read about a character from a different culture. I really liked the friendship Sam and Magnus have, and I felt like it was a purely platonic partnership. I really hope that in the rest of the series they remain just friends. I would like to actually see a book where the boy and girl are just friends, and they never get together. Is that too much to ask?

I think what really won me over was the audiobook narrator. I don't think I've listened to Christopher Guetig narrate anything before, but I felt like he really got Magnus' voice down perfectly. He made me really think that was actually Magnus telling me this story.

If you like Rick Riordan's other mythology based stories, I think you will like this one too.

Happy Reads Everyone!