Cover Image: The Valkyrie's Daughter

The Valkyrie's Daughter

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I honestly ran out of time for reading this book.  It is still on my TBR list but at this time I am trying to finish up a few other books on my shelf.  I may pick this up at a later date.
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This book had a great premise but slightly fell through with the plot and the fleshing out of the main characters. The side characters felt more natural and were more interesting to read about than Sigrid. 

As someone born and raised in Norway, I'm always looking for good Norse mythology retellings, but, again, this fell short. The world-building hinges a lot on already acquired knowledge, which seems counterintuitive to the main demographic. This results in a world that feels flimsy and struggles to advocate for and explain itself.
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I want to first thank NetGalley for allowing me to read this e-arc for review. Please know there are spoilers within this review.

I really wanted to like this book. I really did. Usually even with a hard-to-read book, I can get it finished in a month or so. It's been 3 months, and this book really would make me lose interest after every chapter I read. 

This book follows 16 year old Sigrid, a stable girl working for the Valkyries in Vanaheim, and longs to be one of them. When Vanaheim is attacked and the Eye of Hnitbjorg is stolen, and she sees a vision of herself riding Sleipnir, the mythical 8 legged stallion and leading the valkyries in war. Along the way, Sigrid meets Mariam who was once a Valkyrie, helping her enemy, but they both embark on a journey to save Vanaheim, but really, it was more for Sigrid to fulfill the vision she saw. 

This book is very YA, and I'd actually even categorize it as Independent Read (9-12 yrs). It has some hints of a Sapphic love story, and that's a great introductory for any young reader who is learning to process feelings towards the same gender. However, my issues with this book have nothing to do with the Sapphic theme as I actually appreciated how that was written. 

What I liked:
- I loved the secondary characters way more than the main character. Mariam is kind and troubled but with a big heart. Fisk is misunderstood yet funny and a good friend. Hestur, Sigrid's horse, became a favorite simply for his loyalty. 
- The Sapphic interest between Sigrid and Mariam is sweet. Sweeter from Mariam's side in my opinion as I favored her more as a character. 

What I disliked:
- Sigrid seemed to make a lot of decisions for personal gain until the end when she realizes that what she thought was her destiny was the wrong choice, and that is when she made the choice to help her friends. 
- The relationship between Sigrid and her mother felt a little too rushed and out of place. There was no scene addressing the feelings and emotions of her absence in her life, and rather it jumps into trusting her right away and acting normally for a while until Sigrid finds out the truth. 
- The writing style really took me out of the story. It felt dry and I had a hard time connecting with the characters during their turmoil or distress. Even the characters I liked, I felt no fear or sorrow. The action scenes were the same. They also felt rushed and it was difficult for me to envision them in my head. 
- The author says this is a Norse Mythology retelling, but this is a very loose one. It would have been better if this was written as it being inspired by it, since the book struggles between explaining to its audience the mythological background and building the world for the reader. Especially for a younger audience, this would be difficult. 

All in all, I'd say it was a good attempt, but shortly after the beginning of the book, my interest kept faltering, and that's very rare to happen with me. As of now, I have no interest in reading the next book, as the ending also didn't leave me wanting to know what happens next. 

Characters: 3/5
Plot: 2/5
World building: 2/5
Overall: 2.5/5 and will give a very generous 3.
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Originally didn’t give feedback because I DNF, but it’s hurting my feedback ratio, so I will say the world and main character were interesting, but I didn’t care enough to continue on because of where the story was going. I also never rate books I DNF but this makes me.
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This book helped me get through a bad depressive episode and big book slump. I mean, c’mon, SAPHIC VALKYRIES??? How could I NOT be completely engaged in this book!

The Valkyrie’s Daughter is the story of orphan stable hand Sigrid, who desperately wants to be a Valkyrie.  She was born almost a valkyrie, but instead of a winged horse, her companion is Hestur, a common Midgaurd horse.  Sigrid wants to prove herself to the general and will do whatever it takes.

The beginning and middle of the book was great! I was invested in the world building, I enjoyed Sigrid and Mariam (Fisk was just ok to me, sorry guys).  I liked the perilous journey the girls took, I liked the mythology, it was such a great book— until we got to Helheim.  <spoiler> I didn’t like the battle sequences, and often felt frustrated because I wasn’t sure how everything could be solved without anyone dying. But nobody died… and Sigrid just. Returned home with the junior valkyries and… that was it. Sigrid built a secret stable for Slepneir and is just going to hide him in the woods forever. Like, GIRL, go TRAVEL, See the WORLD, you’re FREE!!!!!! </spoiler>

I hated the last 4-5 chapters but overall, I loved the book. I’m probably going to buy a physical copy of it soon.
Thanks to Netgalley for an ARC!
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Overall, I enjoyed this book, I'm a fan of Norse Mythology and this delivered. I liked Sigrid and her journey and her group of friends. But I also found it to be really predictable and that was a little disappointing. 
If you like Norse Mythology, definitely check it out. And as a bonus, the budding romance is pretty cute too.
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Wow I really feel like this book and I have been through a lot! A whole title change and everything?! I really loved the adventure and I LOVE anything based on mythology, though I was pleased that this one was based on norse mythology alternatively to greek mythology like everything else. This was a great story and a lot of fun!
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This plot was slow and predictable, scenes that could have been further developed weren't where others dragged on longer than they needed to. I did not finish the book.
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I was pleased very pleased with this book, it was fast-paced and entertaining. The story although not groundbreaking and the writing being very simple still kept me engaged. The characters were likable and I was all in on the slow burn, enemies to lovers, sapphic romance. It was a total underdog story, and I loved Sigrid’s growth throughout, what really stuck with me, was that although you are not in the worst situation doesn't mean you can't aspire for more, ask for respect, a chance, and go for your dreams. Another bonus point is having an animal companion with a smidge of personality, I loved the bond that Hestur and Sigrid shared. The world was interesting to explore but I wanted to see a little more. It was somewhat of an open ending, with a few questions unanswered and new questions arising. Overall, it was an action-packed book, with a fascinating world, especially if you are into Nose mythology. Would definitely recommend this and I'm kind of hoping for a sequel to tie up loose ends.
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the valkyrie’s daughter is a gripping tale about sigrid, who wants nothing more than to become a valkyrie. unfortunately a vision of the future leads her down a twisted path where she discovers things about herself that complicate things. through this journey, sigrid makes friends and enemies, all while trying to save her hometown.

sigrid is a strong main character. she’s complex and loveable. she’s had an unfortunate upbringing but is headstrong and determined. over the course of the book, we’re introduced to hestur (her beloved horse), mariam and fisk. each are likeable in their own way. i have a particular soft spot for hestur. he may be a horse, but he’s full of spirit!

the research that went into this book are outstanding. as a lover of norse mythology and history, i really appreciated the lengths tiana warner went for the sake of accuracy. i particularly enjoyed how she followed the correct naming system (-dottir for so-and-so’s-daughter). real mythology has been changed to suit the novel, but this is a fictional retelling rather than a scientific article.

i particularly loved the sapphic romance that came into play later in the novel. i didn’t realise this was a LGBT+ inclusive book, and got excited when things came to fruition! (if you’re keen on tropes, you’ll love the enemies to lovers in this one!)

the plot is non stop from start to end. (nothing i love more in a book than that!!). we’re barely given time to reflect when we’ve been thrown into another intense battle. i absolutely loved the use of strong women as the valkyrie’s are fearless warriors.

all in all, this is easily one of the best books i’ve read this month. i can’t wait to read the next book and see where things go next!
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I really loved this book. I was quickly pulled into the story and loved the main characters. The only part I didn’t care for was the ending. It felt abrupt. Not sad/bad, not a cliff hanger, but felt unfinished.
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I wanted to like this book. Unfortunately, it was a DNF for me. I hope that I am the minority opinion on this one.
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Though I love the premise, this book never really clicked for me. I was onboard the main character's desire to be a Valkyrie rather than a stable hand, but I couldn't accept how mean all the young valkyries were to her. I understand it's to make the main character more sympathetic but the other kids just came off as needlessly cruel. This one was a pass for me.
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I thought that this was really good! I thought that the book sounded interesting and I was right. I was pulled into this story right away and was always eager to get back to the story. The characters were very likable, the story was entertaining, and the mythology added a lot. I am so glad that I decided to give this one a try.

Sigrid is a stable hand in Vanaheim. She lives in the stable with her horse, Hestur. What she really wants is to be a valkyrie but she has a regular horse instead of the winged mare of the valkyries. It turns out that she may not be quite as ordinary as she thought. When Vanaheim is attacked by an outside group, Sigrid jumps into action and sees her destiny. She will end up on the adventure of her life with friends she didn’t know she had.

I thought that this book was very exciting. There was plenty of action worked into the story which kept me glued to the pages. I really liked the mythology that was worked into this story and loved seeing Sigrid and her friends facing some impossible situations. I liked Sigrid, Mariam, and Fisk and really liked seeing their relationships grow and change over the course of the story. The horses were fully developed characters and I liked what they added to the story.

I would recommend this book. I really enjoyed reading this book and couldn’t wait to see how things would work out. I am looking forward to reading more of this series just as soon as I can.

I received a review copy of this book from Entangled Teen via NetGalley.
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Norse mythology, fierce female warriors and sapphic enemies-to-lovers all in one young adult novel.

I liked the strong start to Sigrid's story. Her desire to be a part of something bigger with the Valkyries. When an enemy attacks Vanaheim, Sigrid steps up to protect her place and takes down an enemy attacker named Mariam. Little does she realize the journey in store for her.

The undertow of the growing connection with Mariam was one of the parts I enjoyed reading. The character depth was unique and though I struggled with a few plot points I liked the way Warner merges myth and fantasy to create the world and plot. Lets not forget the bond between horse and rider. Hestur was an excellent addition to the characters.

This is definitely a novel where the development lies in the journey. Some of the areas are slower than I would've enjoyed but overall I found myself cheering for the underdogs and itching for the unraveling of mythic details.

I'd recommend this novel to young adult readers looking for a myth based journey with relatable heroines. Thank you Entangled Teen for the gifted digital copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. True rating 3.5/5.
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I picked up this book because I love valkyries and thought it would be fun to delve a litter deeper into Norse mythology. It ended up being a good read with some great characters and an interesting storyline.

Sigrid is our main female lead. She's a stable hand in Vanaheim who dreams of becoming a valkyrie. What I really liked about Sigrid was her drive and determination to go after what she wants and stop at nothing to achieve her dreams. She's strong-willed and full of hope for her future. Definitely a main character I can get behind. I was also a fan of the side characters - Mariam was fierce, Fisk was interesting, and we even had a good villain.

While the book was great character-wise, I wasn't totally in love with the flow of the story. I found it pretty slow in some parts, and the writing and dialogue seemed a bit off at times. I've seen some reviews mention that the dialogue is quite modern, yet the story feels like it's from a different time and the contrast between the two is essentially what could lead a reader to feel unsettled. I think I agree with that viewpoint now that I've finished the book however, I think that it will allow some younger readers to connect better so not a bad thing overall just not great for me.

Overall, I think this is a good book, and I'm interested to see where the story goes from here. I think it will appear to a younger audience - I'm not if all of the YA-loving adults will love it though, in my opinion!
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i loved the idea of this book, but i just didn't feel as though it lived up to my personal expectations. i wanted something different to what this book was about, but loved it all the same.
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"the valkyries daughter" is a wonderous sapphic ya fantasy. this is based on norse mythology which is incredibly underrated so i was super excited to read this. sigrid was an interesting and relatable main character who wants to be more then an ordinary stable hand. mariam was a great love interest and i loved learning more about her. i wasn't big on the romance but it was still super fun! the enemies to lovers was executed nicely. the plot was quite unique and there were many plot twists that I enjoyed. this is marketed as shera meets thor so if that seems up your alley, definitely check it out when it's available
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4.25 rounded down to 4. A fun journey through Norse Mythology with just a pinch of romance. Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

Sigrid wants more than anything to be a Valkyrie, using those abilities to protect her realm from night elves and forces seeking to invade; however Sigrid was not born with a flying mare at her side. She has a mortals horse, leading to the Valkyries in training treating her as less than...even though she tends to their mares even better than they do. Upon seeing a vision of her riding Odin's famed 8 legged horse, Sigrid strikes out with a banished enemy Valkyrie to find her fate. The journey will be treacherous and that's even before they reach their destination: Helheim.

Sigrid was a great character to go on this adventure with. She made mistakes....numerous ones, but she learned from them and made herself better for them. She didn't run from them or hide them, openly admitting her faults and preventing any awkward reveals she would have to make later. The same however can't be said for her companion, Mariam. That doesn't mean Mariam is a bad character or is unredeemable, it just makes it harder for me to relate with her. The banter between characters throughout the story I fantastic, and the woven stories stitched into the fabric of Sigrid and Miriam makes a beautiful tapestry to take in. 

While the story took some obvious turns, I'm glad I was allowed in Sigrid's world. The ending was open(ish) to where a second novel could be possible, and I would welcome it home with open arms. 4.25 stars rounded down to 4. Recommended for readers ages 12+ as well as for those who love Norse mythology.
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The Valkyrie's Daughter follows Sigrid, a should-be-valkyrie who was matched with a regular horse and is unable to train with the other recruits. Instead, she is a stablehand and serves the junior valkyrie recruits. Sigrid's world falls under attack and she teams up with an unexpected valkyrie named Mariam who loses her winged horse. After that, hijinks ensue! I'm a lifelong horseback rider, a fan of historical fiction/myth retellings, and enjoy books set in viking times, so I was very excited to request this book!

First of all, I thought that the horses were very fleshed out in this book. I could tell that the author put a lot of care in describing parts of horse care that we don't usually see in books (like wrapping legs, diet, differences in horse temperament that was actually realistic, and flying vs. riding). I wasn't a huge fan of Sigrid at the beginning but she grew on me as the book went on. I really liked her relationship with her horse and her relationship with Mariam and am interested to see how sequels will continue their story!

I thought that the world was a little weird. Maybe it was the mix of modern language with a historical fiction/fantasy setting, but it was weird to me that a character who lives with actual valkyries didn't know anything about Norse mythology. It's explained in the story but it just felt a little off. I felt like I was reading a queer YA romance/adventure that happened to be set in a world with valkyries. This tone left me scrambling to make sense of the world and characters. 

Overall, I enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who is particularly interested in horses or wants a fun adventure book. The world was a little off for me and made me not love this book as much as I wanted, but I had fun reading it. 2.95 stars rounded up to 3 from me. Thank you to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley for the electronic advanced reader's copy in exchange for my honest review!
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