Seven o'clock, on a Monday morning, five hundred years after the end of the world, and goblins had been at the cellar again...Maddy Smith was born with a rusty-coloured runemark on her hand - a symbol of the old gods and definitely cause for suspicion. For magic is dangerous. Or so everyone thinks. But Maddy enjoys working magic. Even if it is just to control some pesky goblins. And every time her friend, One-Eye - a good-for-nowt Outlander - comes by, he teaches her more and more about the gods and the runes. Now he wants Maddy to open Red Horse Hill and descend into World Below to retrieve a relic of the old gods. Otherwise it is likely to be the End of Everything. Again ...An epic romp into the heart of the old Norse tales: wild, dangerous, richlyinventive and superbly imaginative.
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(125mm x 143mm x 24mm)
Random House Children's Books
Publisher: Random House Children's Publishers UK
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
The Lightning Thief meets The Sea of Trolls in this well-executed, if rather plodding children's debut by the author of the adult novel, Chocolat. In a world where the intolerant "Order" has deemed the old Norse myths as blasphemous, village misfit Maddy Smith discovers she is the daughter of the Norse god Thor. Guided by Loki and advised by Odin, Maddy travels to the "World Below" to try and thwart the prophesied war between the old gods and the new. The heroes win the day, but at least one villain escapes, hinting at a sequel. Unfortunately, Harris's determination to include just about every Norse god in her narrative brings Maddy's quest to a standstill at times. Some youngsters not well-versed in Odin's family tree may find the discussion of the gods' past grudges confusing, while others will be inspired to dig out their old copy of D'Aulaires' Norse Gods and Giants to refresh their memories of the Vanir and Aesir. A mini-course in Norse mythology for the tween set. (Fiction. 10-14) (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Joanne Harris
Joanne Harris is one of our best loved and most versatile novelists. She first sprung on the scene with the bestselling Chocolat (made into an Oscar-nominated film with Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp), which turned into the sensuous, magical Lansquenet trilogy (Lollipop Shoes, Peaches for Monsieur le Cure). She has since written acclaimed novels in diverse genres including historical fiction, fantasy based on Norse myth, and the Malbry cycle of psychological suspense (Gentlemen & Players, Blueeyedboy, and now, Different Class). She is an honorary Fellow of St Catharine's College, Cambridge, and was awarded an MBE by the Queen. Born in Barnsley, of a French mother and an English father, she spent fifteen years as a teacher before (somewhat reluctantly) becoming a full-time writer. She lives in Yorkshire with her family, plays bass in a band first formed when she was sixteen, works in a shed in her garden, likes musical theatre and old sci-fi, drinks rather too much caffeine, spends far too much time online and occasionally dreams of faking her own death and going to live in Hawaii.