(3 / 5) – It’s Okay
I am a deep lover of adult and YA fantasy, but the complexity of the world building, the hijinks of the characters and the maneuvering for power and money tends to weigh upon a reader after a while. So every once in a while, I find solace in the middle school fantasy. These authors often distill incredibly complex narratives and situations down into poignant and honest moments and these books offer me a place of respite.
It was in deference to this new way of reading that I picked up “The Blackwell Pages” Trilogy during 2021’s Christmas shopping for myself and upon finishing Book 1, “Loki’s Wolves” I am delighted to say it was a solid investment.
Armstrong and Marr use Viking mythology as a foundation for a modern rendering of these myths come to fruition. Appropriately set in South Dakota, where many Norse descendants live, “Loki’s Wolves” is a whimsical tale of overcoming preconceptions and realizing the depth of loyalty when working alongside friends and “enemies.” The authors offer the core concepts of middle school fiction with pace, characterization and limited world building. There are a lot of characters introduced in this novel which comes with benefits and drawbacks, but with two additional novels I am sure most will be flushed out.
I am excited to find out where Armstrong and Marr go with the adult characters. They are currently playing an odd role of good/bad which is intriguing and I am sure that will keep the tension of this book taut in the next installments. I do not plan to read the next books right away. “Loki’s Wolves” was a solid read and I enjoyed it, but at the end I am not chomping at the bit to find out what happens next. I will enjoy that the next time I need a bit of a lighter fantasy read.