The Testament of Loki by Joanne Harris

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Why not just keep it simple? There were enough pleasures in this world to fill every hour of a human’s life. Why waste so much precious time with doubt, and pain, and loneliness?

2.5 stars, rounded up Ragnarok came and went centuries ago, and after Asgard fell the old gods were either dead of stuck in the Netherworld for eternal torment. That is until Loki found a way to escape the Netherworld and into ours… but is he the only god to have found his way to freedom? And will Loki be yet again the pawn in the plans of other gods?

sigh I feel like 2018 is shoring up to be the year of disappointing mythology stories for me. When I saw this title available for request on NetGalley, I screamed to the Valkyries in hopes of being accepted for this arc. I love mythology, and Norse mythology in particular has been deeply interesting to me since childhood.

This is a story with an incredibly interesting premise, but unfortunately this is another book that I struggled with nearly from the beginning. I initially was hooked with the sarcastic voice of our narrator Loki and enjoyed the folding of mythology and Oracle prophesy; however, for some inexplicable reason I never connected with the story and found myself dragging on this book. It took me ten days to read the 320 pages, and the fact that I finished this at all rather than a DNF speaks to the overall premise and my wanting to see how things ended.

Sadly I was not aware that this book was part of a series until I received the mobi file (I really with NetGalley would list series information as this isn’t the first time this has happened), but since it appears to be a prequel of sorts I didn’t think it would be an issue (edit as of May 15, 2018 – this is now being marketed as Loki #2 and a sequel)— I admit that may be a reason for my having issues connecting with the story. I found the writing a bit difficult to understand at times and I felt like I was being told a lot of information rather than being shown it. Due to Loki’s trickster nature, as the narrator he kept things from the reader without really saying so until later. I didn’t really enjoy this writing device as I found myself confused quite often thinking that I missed something… and I did… it was just not revealed to the reader. It may be more successful if Loki simply said something like “but I’ll tell you more when you need to know.” Then again, others may very well enjoy this writing style!

There are themes of acceptance, self-love, and coming of age that will resonate well with a young adult audience, and I think a lot of readers will relate to Jumps. I wish that was more developed, I feel like there was more there to be discovered with Jumps and her friends.

cw: eating disorder, body image issues

★★★☆☆

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher, Orion Publishing Group, for providing me a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review. You can find information about my rating criteria here


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