I just love Middle Grade books! Here’s one that I read recently.
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Icefall by Matthew J. Kirby
Dawn’s Recommendation: 5 out of 5 Stars
Overview: Critically acclaimed author Matthew J. Kirby deftly weaves a stunning coming-of-age tale with chilling cleverness and subtle suspense that will leave readers racing breathlessly to the end. Trapped in a hidden fortress tucked between towering mountains and a frozen sea, Solveig--along with her brother the crown prince, their older sister, and an army of restless warriors--anxiously awaits news of her father's victory at battle. But as winter stretches on, and the unending ice refuses to break, terrible acts of treachery soon make it clear that a traitor lurks in their midst. Solveig must also embark on a journey to find her own path. Yet, a malevolent air begins to seep through the fortress walls, as a smothering claustrophobia slowly turns these prisoners of winter against one another. Those charged with protecting the king's children are all suspect, and the siblings must choose their allies wisely. But who can be trusted so far from their father's watchful eye? Can Solveig survive the long winter months and expose the traitor before he manages to destroy a kingdom?
Why I liked it: It was so different from most stories I read. The story wove you into the Vikings’ lifestyle. I loved the role of oral storytelling in the book and how that was an integral part of the character’s lives. Loved the opening and how the author gave information a bit at a time and let the reader discover the characters without telling them. I loved the relationships between the characters and animals, especially the growing relationship between Solveig and Hake. The story shows Solveig finding her place in the world, her learning her purpose and her strength. The book was refreshing and left me cheering for Solveig! Can’t wait for Mr. Kirby to write another book!
I liked it so much, I am now reading his first book, The Clockwork Three. I’ll review that in a few weeks.