Posted in Reviews

Review: The Unbroken Line of The Moon by Johanne Hildebrandt

http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQmlxaqUmO3NLJtQd85BnHtW_AKjn6YL8a9Jp6iG7pbvkV2UPzvWhere the heck have I been? In short, I’ve been editing my soon-to-be-husband’s book, Transmuted. As an editor by trade, adding more editing to the load at night meant that I pretty much didn’t want to read for a while, so I’ve been very absent from this blog. I’m back now, but thus far it’s been a bit iffy.

As you may know, Amazon Prime members get to choose one of a selection of Kindle books for free at the start of each month. When this program first started, I was able to grab several decent books. As time has gone on, I have been less and less interested in the selection, and the books I have been interested in have been mediocre at best. For a few months straight this year, I haven’t even picked up any of the free books because none of them were even remotely interesting. As such, I was relieved to see a historical fiction centered on vikings a few months ago in the Kindle First lineup, and grabbed it.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t really that great.

I’ll start this review by saying that I did not finish The Unbroken Line of The Moon, by Johanne Hildebrandt. The basic plot revolves around two to three main characters, and switches between their perspectives. Unfortunately, only one of those characters maintained any sort of compelling story for longer than a chapter. As the book went on, I found myself skipping large swaths of text, and eventually I no longer had interest in trudging through the boring character’s chapter to get back to the mildly fascinating.

The Unbroken Line of The Moon follows the interconnected tale of a few young people in the age of vikings when they had begun to truly clash with Christianity. Several of the viking tribes have actually converted to Christianity (even if only in name), but the main characters are loyal to the Norse pantheon.

Throughout the book, the reader must question whether the intervention of the Norse gods (think Freya, Thor, and the like) is actually happening, or if it’s a random coincidental course of events that makes it believable. I enjoyed this aspect.

The author also did her research. Whether it’s the politics of the age, the pantheon itself, or the mention of an Ulfberht sword, the author did due diligence when researching this period in history. Unfortunately, that research does nothing to bolster the bland, vapid characters and plot.

Perhaps I’m a jaded curmudgeon, but I saw the plot coming from a mile away. Don’t get me wrong, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. There are plenty of books I’ve read where I could guess the plot, but it was still interesting to read because the characters and circumstances had real substance. Here, the plot was weakly filled in by a cast of ghost-like characters who were ruled by overt religious feelings and destiny in such a way that nothing really exciting ever happened.

I can’t comment about more than 60% of the book, because that’s as far as I got before I had to stop. That being said, I feel confident in saying that unless you really, really like Norse mythology and politics of that time period, this book is utterly skippable. Even with my interest in the time period and mythological stuff, I just couldn’t get into it.

Glad it was free. Did not finish.

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