Hello, Loyal Readers!

I’m back with an exciting YA book for y’all called Runemarks by Joanne Harris

The Book:

Runemarks is set within the mythos of the Norse Pantheon (Odin, Loki, Fenris, etc.) and tells the tale of the world AFTER the days of Ragnarok (the death of the gods).

Why I Picked It Up:

I was perusing the YA section at my local bookstore and its cover jumped out at me. Once I read the synopsis, I HAD to pick it up. I love stuff that tells the “other side” of the story. 

What I Liked About It:

Runemarks has a great start–We’re introduced to our main character, she’s likeable, relatable, and has some cool magic powers. Her town is totally bogged down in this world’s fantasy religion–which looks down on magic.

The plot thickens right after that as shit gets real in her humdrum town. I can’t go into too much detail without spoiling it, but gods show up, balances are upset, incidents are incited and we have a generally good time.

I also liked this book’s twist–I didn’t see it coming and was very pleased. 

What Could Be Better, If Anything:

While I enjoyed the book on the whole, it took me a long time to read. I was invested in the plot, but never felt a sense of urgency for long.

I feel this was mostly due to the main character. At its worst, I felt like Maddie was just along for the ride as she acts during some parts of the book as a sidekick–asking expository questions and generally going with the flow. She seemed to me kind of like a cameraman, following and observing the action, but seldom having any real effect upon it.

MINOR SPOILERS: My only other criticism is that it has some high concept fantasy stuff that’s pretty difficult to explain. Most of the time the exposition was perfect to get me to understand things, but my fourth wall came down a bit when characters switching bodies or sharing them.

On the whole I liked it, read it all the way, and I’ve already recommended it to friends. I understand this is a series, but it didn’t make me feel the need to rush out and read the second.

Have something to add? Any Questions? Leave a comment and start a discussion! What do you think about lens-like main characters? How do you engage your characters in the action? Let us know!


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