Wednesday, 26 February 2014

The Wit & Wisdom of Tyrion Lannister (and a season 4 trailer)

The Wit & Wisdom of Tyrion Lannister

Season four is coming, and I bought the book to shorten the waiting time, but The Wit and Wisdom of Tyrion Lannister is hardly worth its price. (Not for one who has read all the books twice, anyway). It's a small and thin book with one short word of wisdom per page. However, admittedly, those words make me smile.

 Example one: “When you tear out a man's tongue, you are not proving him a liar, you are telling the world you fear what he might say.” 

 Example two: “A sword through the bowels. A sure cure for constipation.”


Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Harald Hardrada in book trilogy

The last couple of years I've read a lot of British historical fiction with action from the Viking Age: Bernard Cornwell, Robert Low (my favourite), Giles Kristian, Tim Severin and others. For a Norwegian (used to the Scandinavian heroic view on the Vikings) it is very revealing to get the Viking Age interpreted from a British and often English perspective.

Among the many professional authors there are also some indie authors writing from the Viking Age, and here on my blog I've previously reviewed A.H. Gray and now Peter C. Whitaker.


  The War Wolf (The Sorrow Song Trilogy #1)The War Wolf by Peter C. Whitaker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The historical fiction novel The War Wolf is the first in a trilogy about the events in England in 1066. In The War Wolf the author, Peter C Whitaker, tells the captivating story of The Battle of Fulford, which marked the beginning of an extremely consequential chain of events that would change the history of England and the World.

According to the author, the Battle of Fulford Gate is the forgotten battle, overshadowed by the more famous battles of Stamford and Hastings. The Battle of Fulford is nevertheless an important part of history and its outcome was important for the following actions and events. In the battle Harald Hardrada and a huge Norwegian army crushed a Northumbrian army lead by Eorl Edwin and Eorl Morcar.

In the novel we meet King Harald Hardrada (the war wolf), the Northumbrian earls Edwin and Morcar, the brothers (and enemies) Tostig and Harold Godwinson (King of England) and a lot of other historical and fictional characters, with the Northumbrian commander Coenred as the most important of the fictional characters.

A great number of characters is usually no problem in a book, but when many persons are made into point-of-view characters, such as in The War Wolf, this may be demanding on the reader. At least this reader finds the many POV characters and frequent shifts of perspective rather problematic, especially since so many of the shifts are done with little warning or indication as to whom is now thinking and perceiving. I often miss a central point of view from which the story is told and find the third-person narrator is only one of a plethora of perspectives fighting for prominence.

The writer often uses long sentences that usually runs smoothly, but when such sentences are brought into the dialogue, I feel the dialogues rather stilted.

This said, most of the descriptions of weather, landscape, weapons and fighting is engaging and after some time you get to know the characters. As the story unfolds (and you get used to the strange shifts in perspectives) the events take you and the books becomes very exciting. The description of the Battle Fulford is very engaging and all in all The War Wolf offers a good read. I look forward to the second book in the trilogy. I guess that book will be about the Battle of Stamford Bridge.

Harald Hardrada dies at the Battle of Stamford Bridge
Harald Hardrada dies at the Battle of Stamford Bridge

View all my reviews

Monday, 3 February 2014

Amon Amarth "Father of the Wolf" (with lyrics)

"Father Of The Wolf"

So he found the heart in barren land
It was beating, still alive
He held it gently in his hand
And looked up to the sky

With evil thoughts of vicious kind
And sinister disdain
His thoughts of bringing back to life
The witch that died in flames


Serpent's kin
Born of sin
Dark within
Father of the wolf!

He then devoured Gullveig's heart
And she was born again
They brought to life an evil force
A beast that can't be tamed

With dark deception in his soul
Betrayal of the gods
The bane of Oden now is born
Born of evil blood


Serpent's kin
Born of sin
Dark within
Father of the wolf!

They brought to life a malicious force
A vile beast that cannot be tamed
Fimbultyr's nemesis now is born
A vile beast that can't be restrained

Deception is his
Betrayal of the
Oden's bane is
Born of evil blood!


Serpent's kin
Born of sin
Dark within
Father of the wolf 

Amon Amarth