Ragnarok Unwound

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 31 Dec 2018

Member Reviews

This was a really fun read! A fun cast, a likable main character, action adventure- there wasn't a dull moment. The beginning was a bit confusing to read, it gives no run down on things and jumps straight into it, but after a while it was fine and it found it's flow.
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Written by Kristin Jacques, this novel follows Ives, the Fate Cipher who, since she turned 18, has been avoiding her duties. Now she has to try and stop Ragnarok.

I really enjoyed this novel! Well  written and fast paced, this story reminded me of the Dresden Files in its pacing and style. Which is to say very urban fantasy and very quick witted with a lot of mystery. 

The other great thing that Jacques did with this novel is how she handled the myths. I adore what little we know of the Norse Gods, and I really like that she didn't go with the Marvel version but the traditional. We get to see Loki! (And I want to see him in future novels.) But, the Fate Cipher doesn't only work in one mythology, but in all of them. King Arthur mythology is mentioned right at the beginning of the book and is hinted that the next could deal with that.

This author has created an excellent book that can stand on its own, but is also a wonderful start to a (hopefully) wonderful series. Highly recommend to any fan of action, adventure, or urban fantasy.
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I've been having trouble understanding some of the book, so it's been a slow read for me. I have been enjoying it, even if it's not exactly what I had been expecting.
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Ragnarok Unwound by Kristin Jacques
Rating: 5

Main protagonist: Ikepela Ives A.k.a the Fate Cipher.
Mission (seems impossible but it’s not): stop Ragnarok unwound
Other characters: Jules (fae), Hildr (valkyrie), Hel (goddess of death) and the boys (considering the title is Ragnarok Unwound I’m not gonna spoil it for you if I say that Loki is one of them) but the others should be a surprise.

Fate Ciphers should be immortal but Ives is a mortal girl so she has to handle this mess with that disadvantage. She doesn’t want anything to do with this whole business but she doesn’t have a choice when Hildr finds her and asks her to stop Ragnarok. But since Ives is not a conventional Fate Cipher, her solutions aren’t either. But you have to love her because she is your ordinary girl who is willing to go through hell (literary) to save her friends from their fates. She goes through some serious changes in her character.

Hel is one hell of a goddess of death. She is everything I didn’t expect her to be: funny, witty, strong, loyal. Oh I adore her horse.

Loki...hmm...what should I say about him without spoilers...he is my favourite God ever. If he is in a book I read it. It’s a rule I don’t break.. Ever.

So all in all this is the best book I’ve read so far in 2019. Can’t wait for the sequel.

I received a copy of this book from Broad Universe and Kristin Jacques through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.
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Ragnarok Unwound
by Kristin Jacques
Broad Universe
General Fiction (Adult) , Sci Fi & Fantasy
I personally really enjoyed this book and expect it is the first of a series. Her take on Asatru and the Gods of such is both faniful and has an element of truth to those of us that have read translations and attempted original of various texts where many things didn't quite add up. The flowing boisterous poetic form of the Nords of old was intentionally told in ways of things having double meanings as well as hidden ones so always there is speculation. There are some very serious and definite elements to Ragnarok [the apocalypse, end of times] which has always chilled me to the bones as they describe roughly  the types of weapons now at the disposal of idiots but this delves into what causes it and how to try and stop or lessen it and the reluctant adventures  of a girl that is a bit more than the average girl whether she likes it or not!
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3.5 ☆
ARC received from NetGalley in exchange for a review. All of my opinions are my own, and are in no way affected by the exchange. 

This had a decent premise but ultimately I did not find it particularly engaging. I enjoyed the characters but it just felt like a bunch of other books I have read before. I had trouble getting into the book for the first 120ish pages which really left me Meh about the entire thing. I really enjoyed the melding of Hawaiian and Norse mythology however. I dont know much about Hawaiian culture and seeing some of its mythos portrayed was very interesting.
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Firstly, a huge thank you to Netgalley, Kristin Jacques, and the publishers, Broad Universe, for an advance copy of Ragnarok Unwound.

Ragnarok Unwound is a compelling clash between mythology and urban fantasy. 

Ikepela Ives, known simply as Ives, is drinking away her sorrows in a bar one evening when a Valkyrie straight out of legend approaches her and asks for her help in stopping Ragnarok - the twilight of the gods, the apocalypse, whatever you want to call it. As the Fate Cipher, a role passed down from her mother, Ives is the only one with the power to stop it, but it's a power she doesn't - and doesn't want to - understand.

Ragnarok Unwound is honestly just tremendous fun, from the characters, such as Jules, a brownie who is also Ives' best friend, to Hel, the Norse goddess of death who loves video games and was such a badass, to the mythology itself - it seems that in this world, all mythologies are real, though this novel focuses on Norse and Hawaiian mythology. I found that Jacques' version of Norse mythology, while simplified and updated, was actually more accurate than most (eg Marvel) and it was awesome to learn about Hawaiian mythology.

The characters and their relationships with one another, as well as Ives' eventual acceptance of her powers, were strong points for me. We had strong female friendships aplenty, which is something I always like to see, and I loved how close Ives and her father were. The third-person POV dotted from character to character, but rather than being a hindrance or annoyance, it actually helped to see how Ragnarok was progressing (or otherwise!) from different perspectives.

I would definitely recommend Ragnarok Unwound to any fans of mythology and/or urban fantasy, as there is much to love in both genres. 

In the end I gave Ragnarok Unwound 3.5 stars, because to me the pacing was a little off, but overall I really did enjoy it!
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I'm not much into Norse mythology, so I didn't enjoy Ragnarok Unwound. I tried but the story didn't intrest me enough to keep reading. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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I  started reading the book but personally was not hooked into the plot.  I did not finish reading the book itself. Thank you for providing the eArc copy!
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Ragnarok Unwound (Ikepela Ives Book 1) Kindle Edition
by Kristin Jacques
I received a review copy from NetGalley and am choosing to leave a fair and honest review.

A book for fans of Neill Gaiman's American Gods and Norse Mythology, RU drags you into a sassy, funny world of Gods and Immortals.

Ives, as Ikepela Ives prefers to be called, has a secret fated role in the Ragnarok!  It is a role passed down from her Goddess mother.  Ives can stop the Norse version of the Apocalypse, Ragnarok, if only she can get control of her power before the world falls out.

With an amazingly well-researched book, Ms Jacques leads us into a world were Hel speaks like a Millennial and Loki gambles in Las Vegas.  Her characters are both funny and compelling.  The bad guy?  Well, thank goodness for Wiki!  I used it to guess the bad guy and why!

This book is filled with word-games.  Tons of some of the best metaphors and similes I've ever encountered!  Plus glorious lines like “Apparently, fae chicks dug scars” and chapter titles like “Lady Death is a Level-60 Mage.

It is nice to read Norse mythology after years of Celt-influenced stories... And the author reaches past the Marvel Cinematic Universe!  Her use of real mythology reminds me of Amy Sumida's amazing Godhunter series (my own personal literary crack)!

All in all, a fun read, if you are a fan of Gaiman.  Even Terry Pratchett fans might find something to love!

This looks like the birth of a fun series.

4 out of 5 stars

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This book starts with exactly the right balance between giving information and leaving you in the dark to guess what is happening. And when the information is given it is done in a really good way, no info dump, but just exactly the right amount of information to understand what is going on, but not enough to be able to guess what is going to happen. 

After all the needed information was given it went a bit downward in my opinion.. There were a lot of characters introduced, of which many were not that important to the story. 

Either the book should have longer, or things should have been left out. There was so much happening, all after each other, and sometimes even at the same time. This made the story really hard to read. I kept having to go back, because something happened that I missed.

I did really like the ending of this book, and I’m definitely interested in a sequel to see if the writing improves (not saying this one is bad!).

I loved the Norse mythology, I need more books with Norse mythology! I liked the main character, she was interesting and trying to figure out life. 

Final judgement: This is an okay book, I think it could have been improved if the book would have been a bit longer so that all the action could have been explained better.
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Ikepela Ives is the first mortal Fate Cipher—an individual with the power not only to see a person’s fate, but to manipulate the threads and change their destiny. Ives never wanted the power and hasn’t learned to use it. Plus, every time she uses her power, she risks death. When a Valkyrie begs her to help stop Ragnorak, the end of everything, she’s sure she will fail, but she has to try. Her journey to save the world and all the gods takes the reader on a roller coaster ride. 

I enjoyed reading Jaques’ novel. The story hooks you and draws you in. Anyone who enjoys myths and legends will love it. The characters are three dimensional and relatable and the plot has a maze of twists and turns that leave the reader guessing until the end. Although this is the first in a series, it has a satisfying ending that answers the important story questions while also leaving room for the next book. 

My only criticism is that this book has too many typos, missing words and other small errors that a good line edit would have eliminated. I don’t expect perfection, but this could have been improved.

I’m looking forward to Ikepela Ives’ next adventure and you will too after you read Ragnorak Unwound.
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Thank you NetGalley for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

While I’m not well versed in Norse mythology, this story follows the journey of Ikepela Ives, who is mortal but possesses the supernatural ability of seeing and changing fates. She is approached by a Valkyrie in a bar who needs Ives’ powers in order to ward off Ragnarok, which is the Norse apocalypse. 

Overall, the story was a good read. It was fun to watch Ives’ and the other characters go through this fantasy world of gods and goddesses from both Norse and Hawaiian mythology. I think this story is a fresh take on mythology. 

My recommendation: 3.5/5 stars.
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Odin, Loki and a vast array of other lesser gods fill this story of Ikepele.  She is a young woman given powers from her mother and maybe from her father and yet she is mortal.  The fate of all is in her hands...if she can learn enough about her powers to help.
It is a fantastical story of her journey of learning about herself while trying to keep herself and the ones she cares about alive.
I almost stopped reading this story after a couple of chapters.  I chose the book because I wanted to read something different.  I wouldn't normally choose books with this storyline. I did finish it to be able to say I finished and be able to review it.
I liked the main character.  She was determined and had courage as fate, or should I say "the Fates" messed up.  She also was brave and faithful to those who were her friends. Many other characters were also interesting from the author's imaginations and descriptions and their parts in the story.
There were many characters in this story!  I found myself making sure I tried to remember who was what and who were they related to and their power or were they good or evil. Sometimes I felt a little overwhelmed with it.  My bad!   I think I may be a little old for this book...
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"Ragnarok Unwound" gets my rare five star review. Kristin Jacques has places to go, things to do, and more books to write!!!  In "Ragnarok Unwound" Jacques creates a well written, exciting, involving story of gods, and humans, and monsters, and families, and friends and enemies (or are they?). Characters that I have seen many (all too often) times depicted in comics, movies, and other fiction, at last jump off the page as fully fledged, flawed, frustrated, and funny characters. The central character and reluctant hero Ives has her work cut out for her as she trains on the job, to corral the aforementioned gods, monsters, and parents and save the world.
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Ragnarok Unwound was a fun read. I loved the way Kristin Jacques built up the characters and I especially love the way she captured the life of a stray dog. The concept was quite novel to me and as an animal lover endearing! There are a few typos in the book but as it is a netgalley copy, I assume that they will be ironed out by the time it hits the presses! Definitely something that I would recommend to others!
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There's a lot to like about this book. First and foremost: it's different. Where else would half the Norse pantheon combine with Pele and the very modern humans inhabiting places like Las Vegas and Hawaii? Many of the  characters are well developed. And their interaction is often hysterical. It never got old for me to hear the Norse goddess of death slinging shade. I happily suspended disbelief to enter this weird world of shape-shifting gods and goddesses, Valkyries, humans with divine powers, and one brownie. But the plot just never came together for me, largely because it was hopelessly unclear what powers and limits the various characters had, what rules governed their behavior. So there was no suspense about how close any given character was to extinction, as they battled the onset of Armageddon. At one point character X would be close to ... death? Does an immortal die? The next minute wounds would magically heal, which made me wonder why I should bother worrying about any character's plight to begin with. The book was entertaining enough for me to finish it. I just wish it had more structure.
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This book was an interesting take on different mythologies and definitely had me interesting. However, sometimes the pace was a little jarring, and left me a little confused. Despite this I can think of several students who will enjoy it, and it was a change from a lot of the mythological stories that focus on Greek mythology. Altogether, it's not a bad book, I just didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would from the description.
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What an extremely fun find this was!! I love Norse mythology; it's dramatically underutilized (although improving) and the gods and godlings offer such great opportunities and storylines...  This was a very original presentation of that pantheon and its affiliated tales, and the blend with Hawaiian island mythology was a cool touch that brought an unexpected depth to the story. My one complaint: this book could use a pretty thorough editing. I realize I had a review copy but there were a LOT of typos and wrong word choices and they were sometimes distracting. Still, the fact that I loved the underlying story and characterization so much is a testament to Jacques' writing, despite the editorial issue. There were a lot of hints about future storylines at the end and I'm vastly excited to see more - from this world AND this writer.
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This book is a nice casual read with a quirky take on Viking mythology. The light hearted comedic aspect that weaves through the book really helps to break up the darkness in the book, and kept a smile on my face while reading. I love the relationship between Jules and the main character, and I absolutely love the growth of the main character. 5/5 definitely recommend!
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