Paperback ð Norse Code MOBI Þ

Paperback ð Norse Code MOBI Þ

Norse Code [PDF / Epub] ☂ Norse Code By Greg Van Eekhout – Capitalsoftworks.co.uk Is this Ragnarok, or just California The NorseCODE genome project was designed to identify descendants of Odin What it found was Kathy Castillo, a murdered MBA student brought back from the dead to se Is this Ragnarok, or just California The NorseCODE genome project was designed to identify descendants of Odin What it found was Kathy Castillo, a murdered MBA student brought back from the dead to serve as a valkyrie in the Norse god s army Given a sword and a new name, Mist s job is to recruit soldiers for the war between the gods at the end of the world and to kill those who refuse to fightBut as the twilight of the gods descends, Mist makes other plans Journeying across a chaotic American landscape already degenerating into violence and madness, Mist hopes to find her way to Helheim, the land of the dead, to rescue her murdered sister from death s clutches To do so, she ll need the help of Hermod, a Norse god bumming around Los Angeles with troubles of his own Together they find themselves drafted into a higher cause, trying to do what fate long ago deemed could not be done save the world of man For even if myths aren t made to be broken, it can t hurt to go down fighting can it.


About the Author: Greg Van Eekhout

Greg van Eekhout writes books Some are for kids, some are for adults He lives in San Diego.



10 thoughts on “Norse Code

  1. Stephen Stephen says:

    Hold up.everyone who sees this book s cover and thinks it s just another PNR crowding the already bloated marketyou ve been maliciously led astray This novel is 100% Ragnarokian but with words and punctuation This story contains absolutely No sultry, come and hither me eyes No tumultuous, steam filled romances full of moist, frothy otherworld humping and No star crossed lovers fighting the odds to win other side of the track booty What this book does feature is a boat Hold up.everyone who sees this book s cover and thinks it s just another PNR crowding the already bloated marketyou ve been maliciously led astray This novel is 100% Ragnarokian but with words and punctuation This story contains absolutely No sultry, come and hither me eyes No tumultuous, steam filled romances full of moist, frothy otherworld humping and No star crossed lovers fighting the odds to win other side of the track booty What this book does feature is a boat load of all things accompanying the Norse mythological apocalypse You ve got 1 Pissed off, morally dubious deities jockeying for position 2 Squabbling, backstabbing immortals playing survivor and forming dissolving factions on a whim 3 Sibling gods throwing down on one another like a steel caged death match and 4 A fresh, modern retelling of the Ragnarok legend that foretells the end of days Plus giant, immortal WOLVES PLOT SUMMARY I think I pretty much covered it above but here goes a bitcolor Present day Americamurdered MBA student brought back to life to serve the Norse gods as a valkyrie aka uber bad ass flying warrior extraordinaire Incognito, prodigal son god wandering the Earth avoiding responsibility while trying to save his family from their predestined fate Throw in a large ration of myth folk living everyday lives ala American Gods until they realize the end is upon them and you have the makings of an interesting travelogue of the Ragnarok legend.THOUGHTS There is a lot to like about this book but it s also a bit of a mess Accentuating the positive, I am a fanboy of Norse mythology and Greg Van Eekhout clearly has a good grasp of both the story and symbolic meanings behind the Ragnarok legend I thought the references to myth were well done and the author was both playful and respectful of the material in its use There is certainly an American Gods element here, especially in the rather detached protagonist Hermod I like that There is also some beautiful imagery and a number of nice moments of dialogue that clue the reader in to the fact that Eekhout has some real talent I laughed out loud a few times and gaped, open jawed at places where the descriptions were particularly good However.On the minus side, the characters are barely even two dimensional and so it was hard to stake an emotional claim to the story Not caring about the characters really removed much of the tension and drama that might otherwise have been there Also, the plot itself is a dysfunctional mess and very hard to follow Now the Norse legends themselves are not straight forward narratives and so there is a bit of muddle built into the source material However, it wasthan that It s almost as if the author wanted the reader to experience the chaos of Armageddon as part of the reading exercise If so, it was a bit too murky and I think the execution was not all it could have been Overall, I thought the premise was very interesting and there are parts of this that are very good Enough for me to say I like it and recommend that you give it a shot


  2. Felicia Felicia says:

    This book has an awesome cover that is completely deceptive to what the book is about This is not a vaginal urban fantasy book where a girl you connect with kicks mythological ass, it s from the POV of several ppl,along the vein of American Gods by Neil Gaiman although I didn t enjoy it as much as that book.I know from personal experience that it s fun to write inside stuff, but sometimes that can leave ppl left out on the joke, and this book did that a bit for me I know SOME about N This book has an awesome cover that is completely deceptive to what the book is about This is not a vaginal urban fantasy book where a girl you connect with kicks mythological ass, it s from the POV of several ppl,along the vein of American Gods by Neil Gaiman although I didn t enjoy it as much as that book.I know from personal experience that it s fun to write inside stuff, but sometimes that can leave ppl left out on the joke, and this book did that a bit for me I know SOME about Norse mythology, but I think the people who would MOST enjoy it would be very educated in this area.There s a lot of really fun quippy dialogue in here, but the plot is very story driven The thing that it lacked for me is character stuff I didn t really get connected to the lead characters or understand why they were doing stuff sometimes except for the plot telling them to I found it hard to finish the last third of the book because I wasn t rooting for the characters like I d want to as much.That said I did enjoy the dialogue, it made me laugh out loud a few times, and I would definitely check this author out again.Recommended for Norse Mythology fans for sure I increased this rating by a star because I saw other stuff I gave 2 stars and this book is definitely better than them


  3. Sandi Sandi says:

    This book really deserves 4.5 stars From the cover and the blurb, I expected Norse Code to be a lot fluffier than it was, especially with the tagline Is this Ragnarok, or just California What I found was an ambitious re telling of Norse mythology that encompassed our 21st century world Greg van Eekhout manages to not only convey the complexity of Norse mythology, but he does it in a way that is completely comprehensible and entertaining He accomplishes this feat in less than 300 pages.Nor This book really deserves 4.5 stars From the cover and the blurb, I expected Norse Code to be a lot fluffier than it was, especially with the tagline Is this Ragnarok, or just California What I found was an ambitious re telling of Norse mythology that encompassed our 21st century world Greg van Eekhout manages to not only convey the complexity of Norse mythology, but he does it in a way that is completely comprehensible and entertaining He accomplishes this feat in less than 300 pages.Norse mythology seems to be an up and coming theme in fantasy literature these days Neil Gaiman s American Gods and Elizabeth Bear s All the Windwracked Stars are both based on Norse myth However, both seem to require a bitknowledge of the subject While knowing something about Norse mythology makes Norse Codeinteresting, I think one could learn quite a bit about it just by reading this novel Norse Code was thoroughly entertaining and quite exciting I just wish the publisher had come up with a less misleading cover and blurb I think I need to give this my mom rating too While it is violent, it s noviolent than any ancient mythology I wouldn t hesitate to give it to any teenager Despite the cover, I think teenage boys might really like it


  4. Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) says:

    Update It appears that there is an issue with some readers being mislead into thinking that this book is fantasy in the way of the strong heroine led urban fantasy variety There are strong heroines in this book, but mainly it s about a male Norse god and his female companion who is a valkyrie The valkyrie element could have been stronger, but I believe the real fault lies with the very misleading cover I changed my review to reflect the fact that this is not really urban fantasy so much as f Update It appears that there is an issue with some readers being mislead into thinking that this book is fantasy in the way of the strong heroine led urban fantasy variety There are strong heroines in this book, but mainly it s about a male Norse god and his female companion who is a valkyrie The valkyrie element could have been stronger, but I believe the real fault lies with the very misleading cover I changed my review to reflect the fact that this is not really urban fantasy so much as fantasy with some everyday urban elements If you are interested in exploring Norse mythology, you would love this book If you want to read about a kickbutt heroine who happens to be a valkyrie, then this probably will not appeal to you.Onto regularly scheduled review I can say one thing, if this is Greg Van Eekhout s first and last book, I think he can retire pretty proud of himself As a fan of any mythology, I have to recommend this book It brings the myths to life in all their dark, violent glory Ever wonder what Ragnarok would look like Read this book I have decided this book is as close as I d like to come to the Norse end of the world Yes, this book is violent and gory But it should be It would have lacked the important impact otherwise Think about it, heaven is preparing for the final battle on the side of Odin during Ragnarok, with brief periods of drinking mead served by comely maidens, er valkyries These myths have a built in blood and guts factor Like the best books, I felt like I was right there in the action, knots in my stomach as Fenrir devours the moon, while his ever ravenous pups devour the sun and whatever else gets in their way The Midgard Serpent engages Thor in the final battle, and the ship of the dead, carrying Hel, the Norse goddess of death s troops, comes from Helheim to fight the final battle against the Einherjar Well thankfully there is a reluctant and disgraced god, Hermod, and a runaway valkyrie, Mist, to stave off Ragnarok Mist is looking to rescue her sister Lilly from Hel s clutches in Helheim, and Hermod is the only living person to go there and return He went there to retrieve his brothers Hod and Baldr, who died unjust and untimely deaths long story, read the book In payment for his aid, she agrees to help him save the nine worlds, which include Midgard, what we call Earth It sounds complicated, and well it is a bit, but it s so entertaining, and so interesting reading about all these events This book really is urban fantasy at its best.Although some might want a faster paced read, I felt this book is very much worth the investment in reading it The descriptions are so vivid, and it is clear that Mr Van Eekhout did his research, which he earns my admiration for doing And for telling a story that is so readable, fun in parts, and almost dreary in others, as only the myths are and increasingly hard to put down Although reading Norse Code doesn t replace reading the Prose Edda, I would say that this book would do very well to introduce a novice to Norse mythology, and what a cool ride it is along the way.This book starts rather slowly, but you definitely want to hang in there Heck, there s even a great, eight legged horse Slepnir


  5. Amanda Amanda says:

    More of a 3 1 2 stars I have to give Greg van Eekhout props for a very clever and interesting take on how Ragnarok might come about during modern times I mean, the fire giant Surtr is wielding his sword from on high over a final battlefield that includes a Home Depot and a Costco, which made me smile I can t say that I ve read a lot of Norse mythology because it always seemed so fragmented and difficult to follow when I went through my mythology phase in junior high the year Edith Hamilton More of a 3 1 2 stars I have to give Greg van Eekhout props for a very clever and interesting take on how Ragnarok might come about during modern times I mean, the fire giant Surtr is wielding his sword from on high over a final battlefield that includes a Home Depot and a Costco, which made me smile I can t say that I ve read a lot of Norse mythology because it always seemed so fragmented and difficult to follow when I went through my mythology phase in junior high the year Edith Hamilton never left my side , so I have no idea how accurate Eekhout s depictions are Further, I can t say that I care It was entertaining and original, especially when compared with the current glut of vampire fiction on the market today Also, I m always worried about books like this the ones that look like they ll be urban fantasy with a strong female heroine because they tend to devolve into nothingthan a sexfest of a plot that goes something like this It s almost the end of the world there s only one thing to do Have dirty, sweaty, SM sex since all is futile And then lets do it again every 25 pages or so until we ve exhausted the Kama Sutra I was pleased that Norse Code never becomes a dressed up excuse for supernatural porn A few minor issues that shouldn t stop anyone from reading the book 1 The back cover makes it seem as though the entire story will be told from the point of view of Mist, a valkyrie whose purpose is to gather warriors who will serve in the Einherjar at the final battle However, the book doesn t seem to have one main character which is just as well as Hermod and the Aesir are farinteresting characters than Mist in fact, her whole I must save my sister from Hel mission seems unnecessary It also seems as though the book will focus on the NORSEcode project being used to track down descendants of Odin a kick ass idea in every way that isn t really utilized or expanded upon These aren t really problems, but it ticks me off when a book presents itself as one thing and then goes in a different direction even if I end up liking it.2 And the name Mist is a minor irritation because sentences like Mist hung around Hermod s waist caused my mind to put forth disconcerting images of a Norse god riding into battle surrounded by a Charles Schulz Pigpen esque fog.3 The characters seem to exist only to serve the purpose of executing the plot We never learn about them in any depth Normally, this would be quite vexing, but the book makes it clear that they are pawns of prophecy and fate so, in a way, they do exist only to set the chain of events in motion However, it would have been better if they could have been a littleinteresting along the way Cross posted at This Insignificant Cinder


  6. Mike Vasich Mike Vasich says:

    As others have already noted, this book has been mis marketed, which I feel has done a disservice to the author I purposely avoided it for a while because while I dearly love the Norse myths see my own novel if you don t believe me , I thought this was a wish fulfillment fantasy for teen girls You know, sort of a Buffy but with Viking stuff.It s not that at all This book should never have been portrayed as a YA book there s nothing YA about it or teen about it aside from the cheesy cover I As others have already noted, this book has been mis marketed, which I feel has done a disservice to the author I purposely avoided it for a while because while I dearly love the Norse myths see my own novel if you don t believe me , I thought this was a wish fulfillment fantasy for teen girls You know, sort of a Buffy but with Viking stuff.It s not that at all This book should never have been portrayed as a YA book there s nothing YA about it or teen about it aside from the cheesy cover Instead, we get the Norse myths clashing with the modern, which means gods who use modern day slang while still retaining their godness We get Valkyries and Einherjar who work for a corporation bent on identifying fighters based on their genetics We get the essence of the myths with some twists and turns that were satisfying for Norse fans It would also be good for newcomers, since much of the myths and characters are revealed in a way that is unforced In other words, you don t need to know the characters already to enjoy the book since the author will ease you into their stories as you read I thought the characters were great Were they super complex and painstakingly rendered No, but they were believable within the context of the story and true to their personalities and backstories As another reviewer noted, the change in character in Hermod from reluctant hero at best towell, I guess non reluctant herowas really good Eekhout doesn t shy away from killing or maiming characters, and the story does not stay nice and tidy It s chaotic in a good way, I think and action packed, and I was never bored In fact, I devoured this book It was both light and funny, but also serious when it needed to be Lastly, Ragnarok was handled really well I loved where it took place a thematic statement, I think, on the nature of our civilization The climax and resolution fit the book extremely well.Recommended for Norse lovers who aren t too uptight about their characters being reinterpreted Also for those who like action packed urban fantasy ish stuff that isn t too dark


  7. Kara Babcock Kara Babcock says:

    The cover of Norse Code is misleading It has a classic urban fantasy pose, the woman holding a phallic weapon and looking over her shoulder at the reader Really, Norse Code is nothing like the cover or the description on the back of the book Although it begins like other urban fantasy books, it quickly becomes something different It is an epic tale focused through the lens of postmodern apocalypse, where metaphor becomes literal, and gods are as mortal as men.When I went through my mytholo The cover of Norse Code is misleading It has a classic urban fantasy pose, the woman holding a phallic weapon and looking over her shoulder at the reader Really, Norse Code is nothing like the cover or the description on the back of the book Although it begins like other urban fantasy books, it quickly becomes something different It is an epic tale focused through the lens of postmodern apocalypse, where metaphor becomes literal, and gods are as mortal as men.When I went through my mythology phase as a child, I gobbled up the Norse myths as much as I did Greek, Roman, etc In fact, Norse mythology has a special place in my heart Scandinavian myth has a wonderful knack for the epic Ragnarok is the best apocalypse myth Both the Greek and Norse gods are very human in their foibles, but the Norse gods have the advantage of being a part of this epic cycle of song and storythey know how they will die with the exception of Hermod or survive They know how their world will end, that this end is inevitable, and that a new world will arise from the ashes.Greg van Eekhout plays on this theme well, turning Ragnarok into an opportunity for reflection on the mortality of all things Even gods can die And encoded in everything s beginning is also its end, or, as Frigg puts it From its very first moment, the world has been dying, just as an infant s first breath makes certain its last I am life in renewal, and I crave the new green world to come after Ragnarok To tail against the end is merely preserving a corpse.So here we are thinking the end of the world is a Very Bad Thing or is it Perhaps Ragnarok is a time for renewal, a time for the world to be reborn Suddenly the apocalypse has a moral ambiguity The two protagonists sort of fall into the job of stopping Ragnarok Each has a personal stake Mist wants to save her sister from Helheim Hermod is concerned with saving his family from their prophesied deaths Although both are steeped in the mythology surrounding the apocalypse, neither is very competent in using this as an advantage In essence, the world s best hope does the job half assed.Speaking of which, the cover also presents Mist as the now stereotypical kickass urban fantasy heroine, which isn t accurate either Mist is a competent fighter and plays a major role in the plot She does not quite have the skill level to take the title kickass though She isof a sidekick to Hermod whom I like better anyway And there s nothing wrong with this just as there s nothing wrong with being kickass For Norse Code, it works.Hermod, too, is not what one would expect from a god Van Eekhout is not the first to portray a god as apathetic and a little postmodern in his perspective on life However, I like how Hermod grows over the course of the novel At first he is very apathetic, but helping Mist embroils him in Ragnarok and makes him realize that he cannot stand by this time Hermod s decision to make a role for himself even as everyone tells him that stopping Ragnarok is hopeless is an important turning point.Van Eekhout gives us a lot of background on Hermod We get a clear sense of his role in initiating Ragnarok and his character as a god, why he avoids his fellow Aesir and bums around Midgard This is one reason I prefer him over Mist, who gets considerably less character development We learn that she has a sister, that they were both gunned down outside a convenience store, that their parents and grandmother are dead, and that Mist used to be an MBA student named Kathy That s about it There are no flashbacks even Mist s creation myth, if you will, is toldsecondhand than as a proper flashback As a result, Mist feels like aephemeral character than she is Norse Code drags its heels in other respects as well The pacing is problematic, even haphazard This is especially difficult to ignore during the climactic battle, which appears abruptly and ends just as abruptly It is very chaotic but not in a good way with too many disparate plot elements vying for space on the page Once again, Mist seems relegated to a supporting role, taking out one of the minor antagonists while Hermod tries several times to derail the apocalypse.Of course, the end of the world is a downer, and as a book ending, it s really a downer Van Eekhout sidesteps Ragnarok nicely, managing to simultaneously evince the you can buck destiny theme without hitting too many clich s And that impresses me, because I do not think it is possible to avoid the apocalypse in an apocalyptic novel without being some kind of trite So van Eekhout picked the right kind.There are some great moments in Norse Code, like this one So Vidar s got the eye, Mist said, but we ve got the sword As long as Vidar doesn t have both, we re okay Vidar s not that stupid, Hugin said The nothing in the Sword of Seven is a tricky substance to work with, but there s no shortage of nothing In addition to the Sword of Seven, Munin piped in, he commissioned an Ax of Seven, a Spear of Seven, a Hammer of Seven, a Crude Bludgeon of SevenHis backup arsenal of Seven is quite extensive I love this subversion of Vidar as a classic villain he has backup apocalypse triggering weapons There are clever bits of dialogue like this throughout the book.On the flip side, there something high fantasy about Norse Code, and it is very attractive and obvious, despite the packaging Yet it seems to be at war with lighter aspects of the book, as if van Eekhout has trouble synthesizing the two sides into a unified voice


  8. Kribu Kribu says:

    Rating somewhere between three and four stars I can t really decide yet, but I think that if I let it settle, it ll droptowards the three, so three it is.This said, there were things about Norse Code I really liked It s a rather different take to most urban fantasy out there, what with being strictly Norse mythology based and having no fae or vampires or werewolves It s also quite exciting after a slightly sluggish beginning, and I have to admit the ravens POV chapters did bore me so Rating somewhere between three and four stars I can t really decide yet, but I think that if I let it settle, it ll droptowards the three, so three it is.This said, there were things about Norse Code I really liked It s a rather different take to most urban fantasy out there, what with being strictly Norse mythology based and having no fae or vampires or werewolves It s also quite exciting after a slightly sluggish beginning, and I have to admit the ravens POV chapters did bore me somewhat fortunately they were always very short On the other hand, while the plot s exciting and moves along at a brisk pace, it s also a bit of a mess We sort of get thrown into Ragnarok apparently starting to happen, and then Hermod and Mist, our protagonists, need to go to Helheim to rescue some people and possibly hinder Ragnarok, and some people and monsters are killed, and there s lots of plotting afoot, and while none of it was exactly difficult or too complicated to follow, it was also a kind of orchestrated mess, which I found it somewhat difficult to fully engage with.Same goes for the characters Hermod and Mist were both likeable, which is good, but Hermod in particular well, he s a nice guy That s basically it He s a god, a son of Odin, bumming around on Earth, not really knowing what his destiny and purpose is, just aimlessly wandering around and trying to figure things out Which is all very nice, and I found very little to object to in Hermod, but he s so bland He s a nice guy His heart s in the right place, and he does his best to do the right thing, but everything he does, he does somewhat blandly For a god, and for a protagonist, he s just really too forgettable in fact, I struggled for most of the book to remember his name.I did like Mist, and thought she had potential to be a muchrounded character, withagency of her own I d have liked it better if Mist was the main protagonist and Hermod a sidekick, really.Secondary characters Grimnir, H d, Mist s sister Lilly were all okay I liked them I just wish we d spenttime with them Unfortunately H d and Lilly in particular became largely absent just when I d started to enjoy their parts.I m really trying to put my finger on what bothered me about the book and Well, nothing, really It s just that while I enjoyed it, I lacked that emotional connection with the characters as well as the plot It probably doesn t help that while I have no objections to reading books based on Norse mythology, it s also not really something I ve ever been particularly interested in, which didn t help with the lacking of an emotional connection


  9. Oda Renate Oda Renate says:

    Dnf ed Just could not care


  10. Cathy Cathy says:

    I just finished another book that wove Norse mythology into a modern tale, so I was eager to try this one as well This book is a Ragnarok end of the world story I m not listing it as a paranormal story because it s not about people having special powers all of the magic in the story stems from the mythological aspects I have mixed emotions about the value of the book I quite liked the use of the Norse mythology There were characters used in new ways, characters that were less familiar to m I just finished another book that wove Norse mythology into a modern tale, so I was eager to try this one as well This book is a Ragnarok end of the world story I m not listing it as a paranormal story because it s not about people having special powers all of the magic in the story stems from the mythological aspects I have mixed emotions about the value of the book I quite liked the use of the Norse mythology There were characters used in new ways, characters that were less familiar to me, and an interesting take on fate vs free will The characters are somewhat intriguing, but never take on any depth And the story feels a lot like the main character, Hermod, drifting about from here to there, just happening to end up where needed The convenience of fate, or the Sybil, is a bit too convenient The role of Mist is just lacking She and her sister die at the same time, she becomes a Valkyrie, but she wants to rescue her sister from Hel The story about her sister should be interesting and add layers to the main story about trying to prevent Ragnarok, but it doesn t really It just feels added on and shallow And as much as I enjoy any book that has a dog in it, the dog in this book is pretty much a meaningless extra He s loyal and cute, but he doesn t do anything Maybe the author is as crazy about dogs as I am and just can t imagine a story that doesn t include one.This review isn t anycohesive than the story, I m afraid So overall I ll say that I liked it because it was a new take on Norse mythology, and I d recommend it to anyone who also likes that topic It s an enjoyable, light read but just not as good as it should have been


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10 thoughts on “Norse Code

  1. Stephen Stephen says:

    Hold up.everyone who sees this book s cover and thinks it s just another PNR crowding the already bloated marketyou ve been maliciously led astray This novel is 100% Ragnarokian but with words and punctuation This story contains absolutely No sultry, come and hither me eyes No tumultuous, steam filled romances full of moist, frothy otherworld humping and No star crossed lovers fighting the odds to win other side of the track booty What this book does feature is a boat Hold up.everyone who sees this book s cover and thinks it s just another PNR crowding the already bloated marketyou ve been maliciously led astray This novel is 100% Ragnarokian but with words and punctuation This story contains absolutely No sultry, come and hither me eyes No tumultuous, steam filled romances full of moist, frothy otherworld humping and No star crossed lovers fighting the odds to win other side of the track booty What this book does feature is a boat load of all things accompanying the Norse mythological apocalypse You ve got 1 Pissed off, morally dubious deities jockeying for position 2 Squabbling, backstabbing immortals playing survivor and forming dissolving factions on a whim 3 Sibling gods throwing down on one another like a steel caged death match and 4 A fresh, modern retelling of the Ragnarok legend that foretells the end of days Plus giant, immortal WOLVES PLOT SUMMARY I think I pretty much covered it above but here goes a bitcolor Present day Americamurdered MBA student brought back to life to serve the Norse gods as a valkyrie aka uber bad ass flying warrior extraordinaire Incognito, prodigal son god wandering the Earth avoiding responsibility while trying to save his family from their predestined fate Throw in a large ration of myth folk living everyday lives ala American Gods until they realize the end is upon them and you have the makings of an interesting travelogue of the Ragnarok legend.THOUGHTS There is a lot to like about this book but it s also a bit of a mess Accentuating the positive, I am a fanboy of Norse mythology and Greg Van Eekhout clearly has a good grasp of both the story and symbolic meanings behind the Ragnarok legend I thought the references to myth were well done and the author was both playful and respectful of the material in its use There is certainly an American Gods element here, especially in the rather detached protagonist Hermod I like that There is also some beautiful imagery and a number of nice moments of dialogue that clue the reader in to the fact that Eekhout has some real talent I laughed out loud a few times and gaped, open jawed at places where the descriptions were particularly good However.On the minus side, the characters are barely even two dimensional and so it was hard to stake an emotional claim to the story Not caring about the characters really removed much of the tension and drama that might otherwise have been there Also, the plot itself is a dysfunctional mess and very hard to follow Now the Norse legends themselves are not straight forward narratives and so there is a bit of muddle built into the source material However, it wasthan that It s almost as if the author wanted the reader to experience the chaos of Armageddon as part of the reading exercise If so, it was a bit too murky and I think the execution was not all it could have been Overall, I thought the premise was very interesting and there are parts of this that are very good Enough for me to say I like it and recommend that you give it a shot

  2. Felicia Felicia says:

    This book has an awesome cover that is completely deceptive to what the book is about This is not a vaginal urban fantasy book where a girl you connect with kicks mythological ass, it s from the POV of several ppl,along the vein of American Gods by Neil Gaiman although I didn t enjoy it as much as that book.I know from personal experience that it s fun to write inside stuff, but sometimes that can leave ppl left out on the joke, and this book did that a bit for me I know SOME about N This book has an awesome cover that is completely deceptive to what the book is about This is not a vaginal urban fantasy book where a girl you connect with kicks mythological ass, it s from the POV of several ppl,along the vein of American Gods by Neil Gaiman although I didn t enjoy it as much as that book.I know from personal experience that it s fun to write inside stuff, but sometimes that can leave ppl left out on the joke, and this book did that a bit for me I know SOME about Norse mythology, but I think the people who would MOST enjoy it would be very educated in this area.There s a lot of really fun quippy dialogue in here, but the plot is very story driven The thing that it lacked for me is character stuff I didn t really get connected to the lead characters or understand why they were doing stuff sometimes except for the plot telling them to I found it hard to finish the last third of the book because I wasn t rooting for the characters like I d want to as much.That said I did enjoy the dialogue, it made me laugh out loud a few times, and I would definitely check this author out again.Recommended for Norse Mythology fans for sure I increased this rating by a star because I saw other stuff I gave 2 stars and this book is definitely better than them

  3. Sandi Sandi says:

    This book really deserves 4.5 stars From the cover and the blurb, I expected Norse Code to be a lot fluffier than it was, especially with the tagline Is this Ragnarok, or just California What I found was an ambitious re telling of Norse mythology that encompassed our 21st century world Greg van Eekhout manages to not only convey the complexity of Norse mythology, but he does it in a way that is completely comprehensible and entertaining He accomplishes this feat in less than 300 pages.Nor This book really deserves 4.5 stars From the cover and the blurb, I expected Norse Code to be a lot fluffier than it was, especially with the tagline Is this Ragnarok, or just California What I found was an ambitious re telling of Norse mythology that encompassed our 21st century world Greg van Eekhout manages to not only convey the complexity of Norse mythology, but he does it in a way that is completely comprehensible and entertaining He accomplishes this feat in less than 300 pages.Norse mythology seems to be an up and coming theme in fantasy literature these days Neil Gaiman s American Gods and Elizabeth Bear s All the Windwracked Stars are both based on Norse myth However, both seem to require a bitknowledge of the subject While knowing something about Norse mythology makes Norse Codeinteresting, I think one could learn quite a bit about it just by reading this novel Norse Code was thoroughly entertaining and quite exciting I just wish the publisher had come up with a less misleading cover and blurb I think I need to give this my mom rating too While it is violent, it s noviolent than any ancient mythology I wouldn t hesitate to give it to any teenager Despite the cover, I think teenage boys might really like it

  4. Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) says:

    Update It appears that there is an issue with some readers being mislead into thinking that this book is fantasy in the way of the strong heroine led urban fantasy variety There are strong heroines in this book, but mainly it s about a male Norse god and his female companion who is a valkyrie The valkyrie element could have been stronger, but I believe the real fault lies with the very misleading cover I changed my review to reflect the fact that this is not really urban fantasy so much as f Update It appears that there is an issue with some readers being mislead into thinking that this book is fantasy in the way of the strong heroine led urban fantasy variety There are strong heroines in this book, but mainly it s about a male Norse god and his female companion who is a valkyrie The valkyrie element could have been stronger, but I believe the real fault lies with the very misleading cover I changed my review to reflect the fact that this is not really urban fantasy so much as fantasy with some everyday urban elements If you are interested in exploring Norse mythology, you would love this book If you want to read about a kickbutt heroine who happens to be a valkyrie, then this probably will not appeal to you.Onto regularly scheduled review I can say one thing, if this is Greg Van Eekhout s first and last book, I think he can retire pretty proud of himself As a fan of any mythology, I have to recommend this book It brings the myths to life in all their dark, violent glory Ever wonder what Ragnarok would look like Read this book I have decided this book is as close as I d like to come to the Norse end of the world Yes, this book is violent and gory But it should be It would have lacked the important impact otherwise Think about it, heaven is preparing for the final battle on the side of Odin during Ragnarok, with brief periods of drinking mead served by comely maidens, er valkyries These myths have a built in blood and guts factor Like the best books, I felt like I was right there in the action, knots in my stomach as Fenrir devours the moon, while his ever ravenous pups devour the sun and whatever else gets in their way The Midgard Serpent engages Thor in the final battle, and the ship of the dead, carrying Hel, the Norse goddess of death s troops, comes from Helheim to fight the final battle against the Einherjar Well thankfully there is a reluctant and disgraced god, Hermod, and a runaway valkyrie, Mist, to stave off Ragnarok Mist is looking to rescue her sister Lilly from Hel s clutches in Helheim, and Hermod is the only living person to go there and return He went there to retrieve his brothers Hod and Baldr, who died unjust and untimely deaths long story, read the book In payment for his aid, she agrees to help him save the nine worlds, which include Midgard, what we call Earth It sounds complicated, and well it is a bit, but it s so entertaining, and so interesting reading about all these events This book really is urban fantasy at its best.Although some might want a faster paced read, I felt this book is very much worth the investment in reading it The descriptions are so vivid, and it is clear that Mr Van Eekhout did his research, which he earns my admiration for doing And for telling a story that is so readable, fun in parts, and almost dreary in others, as only the myths are and increasingly hard to put down Although reading Norse Code doesn t replace reading the Prose Edda, I would say that this book would do very well to introduce a novice to Norse mythology, and what a cool ride it is along the way.This book starts rather slowly, but you definitely want to hang in there Heck, there s even a great, eight legged horse Slepnir

  5. Amanda Amanda says:

    More of a 3 1 2 stars I have to give Greg van Eekhout props for a very clever and interesting take on how Ragnarok might come about during modern times I mean, the fire giant Surtr is wielding his sword from on high over a final battlefield that includes a Home Depot and a Costco, which made me smile I can t say that I ve read a lot of Norse mythology because it always seemed so fragmented and difficult to follow when I went through my mythology phase in junior high the year Edith Hamilton More of a 3 1 2 stars I have to give Greg van Eekhout props for a very clever and interesting take on how Ragnarok might come about during modern times I mean, the fire giant Surtr is wielding his sword from on high over a final battlefield that includes a Home Depot and a Costco, which made me smile I can t say that I ve read a lot of Norse mythology because it always seemed so fragmented and difficult to follow when I went through my mythology phase in junior high the year Edith Hamilton never left my side , so I have no idea how accurate Eekhout s depictions are Further, I can t say that I care It was entertaining and original, especially when compared with the current glut of vampire fiction on the market today Also, I m always worried about books like this the ones that look like they ll be urban fantasy with a strong female heroine because they tend to devolve into nothingthan a sexfest of a plot that goes something like this It s almost the end of the world there s only one thing to do Have dirty, sweaty, SM sex since all is futile And then lets do it again every 25 pages or so until we ve exhausted the Kama Sutra I was pleased that Norse Code never becomes a dressed up excuse for supernatural porn A few minor issues that shouldn t stop anyone from reading the book 1 The back cover makes it seem as though the entire story will be told from the point of view of Mist, a valkyrie whose purpose is to gather warriors who will serve in the Einherjar at the final battle However, the book doesn t seem to have one main character which is just as well as Hermod and the Aesir are farinteresting characters than Mist in fact, her whole I must save my sister from Hel mission seems unnecessary It also seems as though the book will focus on the NORSEcode project being used to track down descendants of Odin a kick ass idea in every way that isn t really utilized or expanded upon These aren t really problems, but it ticks me off when a book presents itself as one thing and then goes in a different direction even if I end up liking it.2 And the name Mist is a minor irritation because sentences like Mist hung around Hermod s waist caused my mind to put forth disconcerting images of a Norse god riding into battle surrounded by a Charles Schulz Pigpen esque fog.3 The characters seem to exist only to serve the purpose of executing the plot We never learn about them in any depth Normally, this would be quite vexing, but the book makes it clear that they are pawns of prophecy and fate so, in a way, they do exist only to set the chain of events in motion However, it would have been better if they could have been a littleinteresting along the way Cross posted at This Insignificant Cinder

  6. Mike Vasich Mike Vasich says:

    As others have already noted, this book has been mis marketed, which I feel has done a disservice to the author I purposely avoided it for a while because while I dearly love the Norse myths see my own novel if you don t believe me , I thought this was a wish fulfillment fantasy for teen girls You know, sort of a Buffy but with Viking stuff.It s not that at all This book should never have been portrayed as a YA book there s nothing YA about it or teen about it aside from the cheesy cover I As others have already noted, this book has been mis marketed, which I feel has done a disservice to the author I purposely avoided it for a while because while I dearly love the Norse myths see my own novel if you don t believe me , I thought this was a wish fulfillment fantasy for teen girls You know, sort of a Buffy but with Viking stuff.It s not that at all This book should never have been portrayed as a YA book there s nothing YA about it or teen about it aside from the cheesy cover Instead, we get the Norse myths clashing with the modern, which means gods who use modern day slang while still retaining their godness We get Valkyries and Einherjar who work for a corporation bent on identifying fighters based on their genetics We get the essence of the myths with some twists and turns that were satisfying for Norse fans It would also be good for newcomers, since much of the myths and characters are revealed in a way that is unforced In other words, you don t need to know the characters already to enjoy the book since the author will ease you into their stories as you read I thought the characters were great Were they super complex and painstakingly rendered No, but they were believable within the context of the story and true to their personalities and backstories As another reviewer noted, the change in character in Hermod from reluctant hero at best towell, I guess non reluctant herowas really good Eekhout doesn t shy away from killing or maiming characters, and the story does not stay nice and tidy It s chaotic in a good way, I think and action packed, and I was never bored In fact, I devoured this book It was both light and funny, but also serious when it needed to be Lastly, Ragnarok was handled really well I loved where it took place a thematic statement, I think, on the nature of our civilization The climax and resolution fit the book extremely well.Recommended for Norse lovers who aren t too uptight about their characters being reinterpreted Also for those who like action packed urban fantasy ish stuff that isn t too dark

  7. Kara Babcock Kara Babcock says:

    The cover of Norse Code is misleading It has a classic urban fantasy pose, the woman holding a phallic weapon and looking over her shoulder at the reader Really, Norse Code is nothing like the cover or the description on the back of the book Although it begins like other urban fantasy books, it quickly becomes something different It is an epic tale focused through the lens of postmodern apocalypse, where metaphor becomes literal, and gods are as mortal as men.When I went through my mytholo The cover of Norse Code is misleading It has a classic urban fantasy pose, the woman holding a phallic weapon and looking over her shoulder at the reader Really, Norse Code is nothing like the cover or the description on the back of the book Although it begins like other urban fantasy books, it quickly becomes something different It is an epic tale focused through the lens of postmodern apocalypse, where metaphor becomes literal, and gods are as mortal as men.When I went through my mythology phase as a child, I gobbled up the Norse myths as much as I did Greek, Roman, etc In fact, Norse mythology has a special place in my heart Scandinavian myth has a wonderful knack for the epic Ragnarok is the best apocalypse myth Both the Greek and Norse gods are very human in their foibles, but the Norse gods have the advantage of being a part of this epic cycle of song and storythey know how they will die with the exception of Hermod or survive They know how their world will end, that this end is inevitable, and that a new world will arise from the ashes.Greg van Eekhout plays on this theme well, turning Ragnarok into an opportunity for reflection on the mortality of all things Even gods can die And encoded in everything s beginning is also its end, or, as Frigg puts it From its very first moment, the world has been dying, just as an infant s first breath makes certain its last I am life in renewal, and I crave the new green world to come after Ragnarok To tail against the end is merely preserving a corpse.So here we are thinking the end of the world is a Very Bad Thing or is it Perhaps Ragnarok is a time for renewal, a time for the world to be reborn Suddenly the apocalypse has a moral ambiguity The two protagonists sort of fall into the job of stopping Ragnarok Each has a personal stake Mist wants to save her sister from Helheim Hermod is concerned with saving his family from their prophesied deaths Although both are steeped in the mythology surrounding the apocalypse, neither is very competent in using this as an advantage In essence, the world s best hope does the job half assed.Speaking of which, the cover also presents Mist as the now stereotypical kickass urban fantasy heroine, which isn t accurate either Mist is a competent fighter and plays a major role in the plot She does not quite have the skill level to take the title kickass though She isof a sidekick to Hermod whom I like better anyway And there s nothing wrong with this just as there s nothing wrong with being kickass For Norse Code, it works.Hermod, too, is not what one would expect from a god Van Eekhout is not the first to portray a god as apathetic and a little postmodern in his perspective on life However, I like how Hermod grows over the course of the novel At first he is very apathetic, but helping Mist embroils him in Ragnarok and makes him realize that he cannot stand by this time Hermod s decision to make a role for himself even as everyone tells him that stopping Ragnarok is hopeless is an important turning point.Van Eekhout gives us a lot of background on Hermod We get a clear sense of his role in initiating Ragnarok and his character as a god, why he avoids his fellow Aesir and bums around Midgard This is one reason I prefer him over Mist, who gets considerably less character development We learn that she has a sister, that they were both gunned down outside a convenience store, that their parents and grandmother are dead, and that Mist used to be an MBA student named Kathy That s about it There are no flashbacks even Mist s creation myth, if you will, is toldsecondhand than as a proper flashback As a result, Mist feels like aephemeral character than she is Norse Code drags its heels in other respects as well The pacing is problematic, even haphazard This is especially difficult to ignore during the climactic battle, which appears abruptly and ends just as abruptly It is very chaotic but not in a good way with too many disparate plot elements vying for space on the page Once again, Mist seems relegated to a supporting role, taking out one of the minor antagonists while Hermod tries several times to derail the apocalypse.Of course, the end of the world is a downer, and as a book ending, it s really a downer Van Eekhout sidesteps Ragnarok nicely, managing to simultaneously evince the you can buck destiny theme without hitting too many clich s And that impresses me, because I do not think it is possible to avoid the apocalypse in an apocalyptic novel without being some kind of trite So van Eekhout picked the right kind.There are some great moments in Norse Code, like this one So Vidar s got the eye, Mist said, but we ve got the sword As long as Vidar doesn t have both, we re okay Vidar s not that stupid, Hugin said The nothing in the Sword of Seven is a tricky substance to work with, but there s no shortage of nothing In addition to the Sword of Seven, Munin piped in, he commissioned an Ax of Seven, a Spear of Seven, a Hammer of Seven, a Crude Bludgeon of SevenHis backup arsenal of Seven is quite extensive I love this subversion of Vidar as a classic villain he has backup apocalypse triggering weapons There are clever bits of dialogue like this throughout the book.On the flip side, there something high fantasy about Norse Code, and it is very attractive and obvious, despite the packaging Yet it seems to be at war with lighter aspects of the book, as if van Eekhout has trouble synthesizing the two sides into a unified voice

  8. Kribu Kribu says:

    Rating somewhere between three and four stars I can t really decide yet, but I think that if I let it settle, it ll droptowards the three, so three it is.This said, there were things about Norse Code I really liked It s a rather different take to most urban fantasy out there, what with being strictly Norse mythology based and having no fae or vampires or werewolves It s also quite exciting after a slightly sluggish beginning, and I have to admit the ravens POV chapters did bore me so Rating somewhere between three and four stars I can t really decide yet, but I think that if I let it settle, it ll droptowards the three, so three it is.This said, there were things about Norse Code I really liked It s a rather different take to most urban fantasy out there, what with being strictly Norse mythology based and having no fae or vampires or werewolves It s also quite exciting after a slightly sluggish beginning, and I have to admit the ravens POV chapters did bore me somewhat fortunately they were always very short On the other hand, while the plot s exciting and moves along at a brisk pace, it s also a bit of a mess We sort of get thrown into Ragnarok apparently starting to happen, and then Hermod and Mist, our protagonists, need to go to Helheim to rescue some people and possibly hinder Ragnarok, and some people and monsters are killed, and there s lots of plotting afoot, and while none of it was exactly difficult or too complicated to follow, it was also a kind of orchestrated mess, which I found it somewhat difficult to fully engage with.Same goes for the characters Hermod and Mist were both likeable, which is good, but Hermod in particular well, he s a nice guy That s basically it He s a god, a son of Odin, bumming around on Earth, not really knowing what his destiny and purpose is, just aimlessly wandering around and trying to figure things out Which is all very nice, and I found very little to object to in Hermod, but he s so bland He s a nice guy His heart s in the right place, and he does his best to do the right thing, but everything he does, he does somewhat blandly For a god, and for a protagonist, he s just really too forgettable in fact, I struggled for most of the book to remember his name.I did like Mist, and thought she had potential to be a muchrounded character, withagency of her own I d have liked it better if Mist was the main protagonist and Hermod a sidekick, really.Secondary characters Grimnir, H d, Mist s sister Lilly were all okay I liked them I just wish we d spenttime with them Unfortunately H d and Lilly in particular became largely absent just when I d started to enjoy their parts.I m really trying to put my finger on what bothered me about the book and Well, nothing, really It s just that while I enjoyed it, I lacked that emotional connection with the characters as well as the plot It probably doesn t help that while I have no objections to reading books based on Norse mythology, it s also not really something I ve ever been particularly interested in, which didn t help with the lacking of an emotional connection

  9. Oda Renate Oda Renate says:

    Dnf ed Just could not care

  10. Cathy Cathy says:

    I just finished another book that wove Norse mythology into a modern tale, so I was eager to try this one as well This book is a Ragnarok end of the world story I m not listing it as a paranormal story because it s not about people having special powers all of the magic in the story stems from the mythological aspects I have mixed emotions about the value of the book I quite liked the use of the Norse mythology There were characters used in new ways, characters that were less familiar to m I just finished another book that wove Norse mythology into a modern tale, so I was eager to try this one as well This book is a Ragnarok end of the world story I m not listing it as a paranormal story because it s not about people having special powers all of the magic in the story stems from the mythological aspects I have mixed emotions about the value of the book I quite liked the use of the Norse mythology There were characters used in new ways, characters that were less familiar to me, and an interesting take on fate vs free will The characters are somewhat intriguing, but never take on any depth And the story feels a lot like the main character, Hermod, drifting about from here to there, just happening to end up where needed The convenience of fate, or the Sybil, is a bit too convenient The role of Mist is just lacking She and her sister die at the same time, she becomes a Valkyrie, but she wants to rescue her sister from Hel The story about her sister should be interesting and add layers to the main story about trying to prevent Ragnarok, but it doesn t really It just feels added on and shallow And as much as I enjoy any book that has a dog in it, the dog in this book is pretty much a meaningless extra He s loyal and cute, but he doesn t do anything Maybe the author is as crazy about dogs as I am and just can t imagine a story that doesn t include one.This review isn t anycohesive than the story, I m afraid So overall I ll say that I liked it because it was a new take on Norse mythology, and I d recommend it to anyone who also likes that topic It s an enjoyable, light read but just not as good as it should have been

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