Hi! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Runes of Destiny!
Read on to know what I thought of this book (it’s excellent!). There’s also an international giveaway to win a signed copy of the book + a plush raven. 🙂
Standalone Second book in a Series
Separated by time. Brought together by fate.
Linnea felt a shiver travel the length of her spine.
It hadn’t been a joke – the runes really had shown her destiny.
Indulging her fascination for the Viking language and losing herself in an archaeological dig is just what Linnea Berger needs after her recent trauma. Uncovering an exquisite brooch, she blacks out reading the runic inscription, only to come to, surrounded by men in Viking costume, who seem to take re-enactment very seriously.
Lost and confused, Linnea finds herself in the power of Hrafn, a Viking warrior who claims her as his thrall and takes her on a treacherous journey across the seas to sell her for profit. Setting sail, she confronts the unthinkable: she has travelled back to the ninth century.
Linnea is determined to find a way back to her own time, but there’s a connection forming with Hrafn. Can she resist the call of the runes and accept her destiny lies here …
I found The Runes of Destiny thoroughly entertaining and put aside all other work to finish this book! I don’t know much about the Vikings, their language or their customs so I learned a lot from the story.
It’s clear the author has put in a great deal of research because I felt like I had been transported to the ninth century. We get to read about what the Vikings wore, what materials they worked with, how families were organized, and what occupations were in vogue.
Little details like Linnea’s shaky use of old Norse (because she belongs to the 21st century and has been studying the language in written form as part of her PhD studies) were included.
It was incredible to read about things like how the women knitted using a primitive instrument (a cross between a crochet hook and a knitting needle), how people ate food without sweeteners, how ale was preferred to water, how lye soap was used to bathe and wash clothes by hand, and even what women used during their periods.
The author describes Hrafn’s journey by “ship” to Istanbul in great detail, with Linnea observing places she’d only seen in ruins so far, come alive. All of this gives an authentic feel to the story.
I found it interesting how Linnea thinks about her definition of “normal” and “barbaric.” That is, what we consider savage now may have been completely acceptable behavior in the ninth century.
The romance was wonderfully built up and I could imagine the sparks growing between Hrafn and Linnea. The portrayal of Hrafn as a person who is curious about new things pleased me. The market scene is my favorite one in the book.
Linnea’s horrific experiences were frightful and those scenes were skillfully drawn. I was totally pulled into the terrifying moments. I wasn’t too happy about what Linnea did at the end. Even though it was presented as her choice/destiny, it didn’t seem right to me. But it’s interesting because it leaves room for more time travel.
Nevertheless, the arduous journey by ship and the events at Istanbul were most diverting. I would recommend this book for its romance and the depiction of Vikings as a people who are more than marauders at sea.
(Many thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for offering an ARC for review via NetGalley. This review reflects my honest and unbiased opinion.)
Genre: Time travel historical romance (paranormal/fantasy)
Publication date: December 10, 2020
Publisher: Headline Review
Giveaway to Win a signed copy of The Runes of Destiny and Plushy Raven (Open INT)
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
About the author
Christina Courtenay writes historical romance, time slip and time travel stories, and lives in Herefordshire (near the Welsh border) in the UK. Although born in England, she has a Swedish mother and was brought up in Sweden – hence her abiding interest in the Vikings. Christina is a former chairman of the UK’s Romantic Novelists’ Association and has won several awards, including the RoNA for Best Historical Romantic Novel twice with Highland Storms (2012) and The Gilded Fan (2014). The Runes of Destiny (time travel published by Headline 10th December 2020) is her latest novel. Christina is a keen amateur genealogist and loves history and archaeology (the armchair variety).
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