I AM EXCITED. Soooo many awesome books (Demon Road by Derek Landy), movies (Mockingjay Part Two, The Scorch Trials), and TV shows (Doctor Who, series nine) are coming out this fall… and Rick Riordan is publishing a new book then, too!
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer arrives in bookstores October sixth, 2015. I didn’t realize it would be published so soon – for some reason, I thought it was coming out NEXT year!
But it’s not, so I am even more excited for it, and I’m probably going to preorder a copy. I rarely buy books without having read them – because what if I don’t like it, and feel like I’ve wasted my money? – but I trust that Riordan’s new story will satisfy me just as much as his earlier ones did. (Also… let’s be real, I don’t buy that many books ANYWAY. I don’t feel bad about spending fifteen dollars on something I haven’t read since I only buy two or three full-price books per year.)
Aaaaaaaaaaaanyway. The Sword of Summer is about Norse mythology, as you hopefully already guessed. It’s the first in a trilogy (like the Kane Chronicles), and it’s aimed at middle grade readers. BUT I’M GONNA READ IT ANYWAY, EVEN THOUGH I’LL BE IN COLLEGE BY THE TIME IT IS PUBLISHED.
I’m really curious to see how Riordan writes the Norse gods. Hopefully they’ll be adults like in the Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus series? One of the things I seriously disliked in the Kane Chronicles was Riordan’s decision to make Anubis a teenager, because then Sadie ended up flirting with him… UGH THIS WAS SO BORING AND ALSO WEIRD AND I HAVE NO IDEA WHY HE DID THAT.
Please don’t make Loki a teenager, Mr. Riordan. Speaking of Loki, though… please DO feel free to ignore any and all criticism about how your version of Loki “isn’t canon” or whatever, because I feel like a hell of a lot of people are expecting something more like Marvel!Loki. I mean, middle schoolers? The Avengers is basically aimed at them.
…anyway. I meant to talk about the blurb, the cover(s), and a chapter preview, but I still haven’t done that because I’m RANTING ABOUT TEENAGE GODS. So, I will move on to the blurb and the other thingies.
Magnus Chase has always been a troubled kid. Since his mother’s mysterious death, he’s lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, keeping one step ahead of the police and the truant officers.
One day, he’s tracked down by an uncle he’s never met – a man his mother claimed was dangerous. His uncle tells him an impossible secret: Magnus is the son of a Norse god. The Viking myths are true. The gods of Asgard are preparing for war. Trolls, giants and worse monsters are stirring for doomsday.
To prevent Ragnarok, Magnus must search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years. When an attack by fire giants forces him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents, Magnus makes a fatal decision. Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die…
I’m not sure if Riordan actually confirmed this yet, but there is a line in The Blood of Olympus that implies that Magnus is Annabeth’s cousin. OH MY GOD IS RIORDAN PLANNING ANOTHER CROSSOVER STORY OMG.
…also, I keep accidentally calling him Magnus Bane instead. Because reasons.
I’m curious to read about Magnus’s possible death/life thingy, and I quite like this Goodreads user’s theory about it.
All right, it’s time for some COVER FANGIRLING. Let’s start with my favorite… which is also the one I’ll see most often in bookstores, the library, et cetera. Here is the US edition:
But my favorite part? OH MY GOD THEY INCLUDED THE WORLD TREE! The World Tree, or Yggdrasil, connects the Nine Worlds of Norse mythology – Asgard is at the top, Helheim is at the bottom, and Midgard (where humans were thought to live) is in the middle.
ADSLGHSLDGHALG I’m just really excited because this is is obviously a HUGE part of Norse mythology and I love that it’s shown on the cover. I think it connects the title/plot and the art really well.
Now, here’s the UK cover:
I am… not quite so pleased about THIS cover. For a start, the art looks computer-generated. Also, I think the covers are a little… um, overwhelming? I thought they were pretty for about two second and then I was like OW MY EYES HURT. Also, this cover is so GENERIC. It could belong to any MG/YA fantasy novel! It doesn’t make me immediately think of Norse mythology like the other one does.
I do like that the wolf looks like… a vision? Something magical? It looks sort of ethereal and Rick Riordan’s characters often have lots of prophetic dreams, so this fits in with that really well.
Also, I’m pretty sure the wolf on both covers is Fenrir? NICE. (Also, I was googling stuff in order to refresh my memory and apparently if Ragnarok is not averted, Fenrir will eat Odin? OH MY GOD.)
You can read an excerpt from chapter two here. OH MY GOD I THINK RICK MUST HAVE RETURNED TO HIS GLORIOUSLY SILLY CHAPTER TITLES BECAUSE CHAPTER TWO IS CALLED “THE MAN WITH THE METAL BRA.” I LOVE YOU, MR. RIORDAN.
Also, here is some speculation about who Magnus’s godly parent might be. I would love it if this happened because I want this series to be a little less straightforward/obvious than, “Magnus is the son of Thor and Loki is his evil uncle.” I mean, come on.
Are you looking forward to reading The Sword of Summer?!