5 stars

Winter Solstice Winter

Title: WINTER SOLSTICE WINTER wintersolstice
(A Viking Blood Saga – Book I)
Author: E. J. Squires
Kindle Edition; 464 pages
Published September 2013

In the land where ruthless Vikings and ominous shape-shifters roam free Eiess usurps the Northlandic Throne and suspends the seasons on Winter Solstice. Lucia, heir to the Northlandic Throne, is taken prisoner and wastes away in one of the castle’s towers.
Ailia, a peasant girl, goes missing, and wakes up in a glacier cave months later with no memory of how she ended up there. Soren, one of the Sentinors sent to defeat Eiess, has failed in saving Lucia and in defeating Eiess.
As Eiess continues to amass her forces, preparing for the battle to end all battles, Ailia, Lucia and Soren are about to discover that their lives are intertwined behind a veil of family lies. Determined to take back the throne, they begin to form an alliance, but their mission to overthrow Eiess is stalled when the family lies surface.
And when a forbidden love flourishes between two, jealousy, anger and duplicity arises, causing one of them to betray the others – a betrayal which puts their lives and the lives of humanity in grave danger.

Welcome to Midgard! Allfather Odin is pleased to meet you. Now, let Odin take you a thousand years before… during the times when the Vikings roamed the world and where wolves and shape-shifters wreck havoc in the Northlandic Kingdom!

The story begins with Ailia having a mare dream. In her sleep, an evil empress was chasing after her. Ailia had no idea what the empress wanted from her but she was terrified. When she awoke from her dream, she told her aunt about it and was concerned. Truth is, Ailia was mocked and condemned by her own friends when she told them about her mare dreams. Soon, she no longer felt welcomed in her beloved town because they thought she was cursed.

In the Northlandic Kingdom, Lucia, sole heir to the throne was grieving the death of her Queen Mother. In accordance to Midgard’s tradition, upon her Majesty’s death, two maidens were offered as sacrifices, to help the queen cross to the other realm. I actually found this scene quite intriguing, I don’t know if this had been a Nordic tradition, but the mere thought of sacrificing oneself was beyond me.

Anyway, the kingdom was under siege by the evil Eiess, and Lucia was taken prisoner, thanks to a traitor aunt. It took her a long time before she was able to escape and learn about her twin sister. Ailia, on the other hand, woke up in a cave with no previous memory and soon she met Soren, who rescued her from shape-shifters. Soon thereafter, the three characters crossed paths and became entangled in a web of lies, deceptions, treason and secrets.

The main characters, Ailia, Lucia and Soren played vital roles in this magnificent tale. The scenes and the secondary characters were likewise rich. I can’t believe this was EJ Squires’ maiden writing venture. I adored Squires’ writing style; rich, dreamy and action-packed. She unmistakably researched the setting, and definite delineations of Viking life. While I was reading the book, I felt like I was also a part of the story, I even imagined myself as one of Lucia’s handmaidens!

Overall, let me just say that I had a very delightful experience reading Winter Solstice Winter (Viking Blood Saga). The story was a little long but I was so immersed with the characters that I was surprised I have already reached the last page. I loved the idea behind this engrossing book set in Midgard, during the time of the Vikings of the Norse Mythology. I’d like to call Winter Solstice Winter as one of the best Viking saga ever written, a cross between Lord Of the Rings and Legend of the Seeker. This book had me running through a handful of emotions. I highly recommend this romantically historical tale to everyone who yearns to go back in time. An instant 5***** to author EJ Squires.

Evelyn J. Squires was born in the land of the Midnight Sun. When she  moved to the USA with her family in 1992, she completed High School and studied Comparative Literature at Brigham Young University. She married in 2003, and now resides in Florida with her husband and three children.

Get to know more about her book at: www.norsevikingsaga.com

Facebook author page:- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Evelyn-Squires/433410863398865

Twitter:- https://twitter.com/EvelynSquires / @EvelynSquires

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