What I’m Reading – The Half-Drowned King

Hey Y’all, I’m back! I was gone for a week due to vacation in which I saw some cool stuff, sat back on the beach but most importantly finished reading a couple of books.

The first book I read and finished on my vacation was Linnea Hartsuyker’s The Half-Drowned King.

I felt like it began slow, but it was steady and really held my attention through to the end. The book is based in Norway during the age of vikings, so the names are hard to pronounce if you are not familiar with that time period, which I am not.

The story revolves around a young man named Ragnvald Eysteinsson (how do you even pronounce this?) and his sister Svanhild, who comes from a line of kings that truly ended with his Grand Father, but in which his Father squandered. Ragnvald is betrayed and left for dead in the ocean by his step-father Olaf. Now what must both of them do? And what they do I wont spoil.

The plot is character driven with the characters driving the action and where the story goes instead of the plot dictating how the characters act. This is most of the time frustrating as I would make different choices but I’m not the character. The majority of characters are flushed out and fully realized.

The fights and battles are great and fun. She writes the action mostly clearly, there are some transitions from action to action that are rough. But since you are drawn in by the characters, it isn’t distracting.

One thing that stood out to me is the sexism, that was obviously present during that time. Linnae highlights the tragedy of how the culture treated women without getting into the truly graphic nature of it too much. There are some graphic, quick, scenes but it isn’t glorified or used as frivolously like Game of Thrones. And this culture of sexism really comes out in Svanhild’s story in the many different situations she faces.

I definitely recommend this book. It was a good read, and I can’t wait to read the squeal!

If you have already read it, what did you think about it?

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