Review: The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase #1)
Series: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1
Also in this series: The Hammer of Thor
Released by Disney, Hyperion on 6 October 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Mythology
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 a man he’s never met—a man his mother claimed was dangerous. The man 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.
Back in 2012, I started reading the Percy Jackson series for the first time. A fictional book series about Greek demigods, which I enjoyed very much! At the beginning of this year, I finally started reading the Heroes of Olympus series, which is a sort of spin-off sequel to the PJ series, but this time with Roman demigods thrown in too. I really liked that series too (maybe a bit more than the original series). All I hoped was for Rick Riordan to pick up Norse Mythology (because he also did an Egyptian series!) and he did! The Sword of Summer is the first book in – what I believe – a trilogy about a demigod named Magnus Chase.
What I said on Goodreads:
My full review:
This book follows Magnus as he finds out he’s a Norse demigod and gets brought to Hotel Valhalla (sort of like Camp Half-Blood, but different). He then goes on a quest without permission of the hotel owner and shit happens. Yes, it’s the same formula as PJ and HoO, but honestly I love it so much more! Because I love Norse Mythology so so much, it kind of made the fact that the book was predictable a lot better.
Because yes, I am going to be terribly honest – this book is predictable. Magnus goes on a quest with two companions (initially, but he does get a third companion along the way); they meet a couple of the gods (to introduce people to Norse mythology I guess), they meet some of the mythology creatures (including the offspring of Sleipnir, an eight-legged horse that Loki gave birth to (yes really!)). And then there’s a big fight at the end with the enemy that was introduced in this book. But this book is just so cool that I didn’t care about that at all. Because I love these quest books, and it’s Norse Mythology, come on!
Magnus is of course the main character of this book, and he’s the only one who has a POV in this story which I liked a lot. Because that also meant the resturn of the chapter titles! That was one of the reasons I loved the PJ books so much, the hilarious chapter titles every time. I missed those in Heroes of Olympus and was super happy to find out they were back in this book! My favourite one, which hopefully isn’t spoilerish, was: “Hearthstone passes out even more than Jason Grace (though I have no idea who that is)“.
Aside from Magnus, we meet several other characters – including an elf and a dwarf, an eight-legged horse which they call ‘Stanley’, a bunch of guys called Erik, some Valkyrie and of course a couple of norse Gods. Not sure which one was my favourite, but Thor was definitely one of them. Magnus’ companions are Blitz, Hearth and Samirah, and personally I liked Sam best. She’s a muslim and a Valkyrie and gods I loved her so much!
I won’t tell you who Magnus’ father (because that we already know because of the synopsys) is, because that’s a spoiler, but I can say I was surprised. View Spoiler »It wasn’t Thor, or Loki, it wasn’t even Odin. No, his godly parent was Frey, a Vanir god (the ‘lesser’ God apparently); which I liked at lot! Because after seeing his appearance on the cover I was so afraid he might be the son of Thor (though of course Marvel’s Thor doesn’t look at all like how he ‘actually’ looks like) « Hide Spoiler
We also find out a bit more about the Chase family – because yes, Annabeth and Magnus are related. They are cousins, but at the moment this book starts they haven’t seen each other for at least seven or eight years. Whether or not Annabeth is in this book or not I won’t tell you, you’ll have to find out for yourself!
In the end, I really loved The Sword of Summer and I can safely say it’s my favourite mythology book so far from Riordan. I hope the rest of this series will be as awesome as this one, but seeing as it’s Rick Riordan, and seeing as it’s Norse mythology, it probably wil! I recommend this book to people who loved the previous three series, and especially to fans of The Almighty Johnsons, The Blackwell Pages and of course Norse mythology in general!
My opinion in one gif: