by Catherine Fisher Fisher
Category: Fiction / Fantasy
0 pages; ISBN: 0060724749
Rating: 10/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner
HarperCollins, Aug 2004, $17.99, 512 pp.
The malevolent Snow-walker Gudrun came from the ice to use the Ragnar patriarch to become the ruler of the realm. She married Lord Jarl Ragnar, who is her puppet unable to independently think anymore. Recently, she sent a blizzard to put down a resurrection by the rightful ruling family, the Wulfings. Using her spouse, she exiles the next generation of Wulfings, cousins Jessa Horolsdaughter and Thorkil Harroldsson, to remote Thrasseshall on the edge of the world. There they will live with her son, rumored to be a monster that no one outside that isolated frozen hold has seen since he was born.
Jessa meets Gudron’s offspring Kari Ragnarsson, who is a Snow-walker with his mother’s powers but is different due to the upbringing of his ”caretaker” Brochael Gunnarsson who has showered him with love and understanding. Kari is the only hope to free her people from the icy grip of the evil sorceress, but can he commit matricide and if yes, can those who care for him like her keep him from becoming a chip off the maternal block?
SNOW-WALKER combines a wonderful action-packed trilogy into a fabulous single volume fantasy that will thrill middle school readers. The Nordic saga is fantastic because of the cast that are deeper than the snow that is everywhere. The heroes are a superb group while the villain is so terrifically nasty that the audience will shiver as much from her as from the climate. However, the story belongs to Kari, raised in isolation as a “creature”, he must decide between his mother’s pleas to become her sidekick or the entreaty of those residing in the tundra with him to save the world from her.
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