The Half-Drowned King Read Online Free - Since the death of Ragnvald Eysteinsson's father in battle, he has worked hard to protect his sister Svanhild and planned to inherit his family's land when he comes of age. But when the captain of his ship tries to kill him on the way home from a raiding excursion, he must confront his stepfather's betrayal, and find a way to protect his birthright. It is no easy feat in Viking-Age Norway, where a hundred petty rulers kill over parcels of land, and a prophesied high king is rising.
But where Ragnvald is expected to bleed, and even die, for his honour, Svanhild is simply expected to marry well. It's not a fate she relishes, and when the chance to leave her stepfather's cruelty comes at the hand of her brother's arch-rival, Svanhild is forced to make the ultimate choice: family or freedom.
Drawing from the Icelandic Sagas, The Half-Drowned King takes inspiration from the true story of Ragnvald of Maer, the right hand man of King Harald Fairhair, first king of all Norway, and his sister, Svanhild, as she tries to find freedom in a society where the higher her brother rises, the greater her worth as a political pawn.
|Title||:||The Half-Drowned King|
|Number of Pages||:||448 pages|
September 12, 2017
Ragnvald Eysteinsson (hereafter referred to as Rags, with apologies to Dave Righetti, although Hartsuyker pronounces it Ron-vald, so Ron might have worked better) is a pretty decent young man, by the measures of the time. Young (20), strong, lithe, and happy to be on a raiding mission with the im...
July 24, 2017
When I read the description for this book my first thought was “Gimme!”, for a couple of reasons. I’ve done a lot of family genealogical research & was intrigued to find that some of my dodgy ancestors began life in Norway before taking a wrong turn & landing on the shores of Sco...
August 20, 2017
Vikings are a baffling lot—they personify the best of what we like to think we can be—brave, adventurous, noble, cultivating incredibly bushy beards, and possessing the flair to wear horns as an accessory mixed with enough radioactive alt-right notions that would make your everyday white supremac...
November 05, 2017
Conflicted with this one. The 1st 100 pages or so is exactly what I was expecting after reading the blurb. A revenge Viking novel with a great historical fiction feel. However as I read further into the book, I felt this sense of belonging to the story slowly disappearing. I feel like the histori...
May 03, 2017
I really wanted to love this book, but it lost my interest about two-thirds of the way through. It's carefully detailed historical fiction set in ninth-century Norway, based on the Heimskringla and featuring siblings as the main protagonists. Unfortunately, the characters don't live up to the pro...
January 07, 2018
This felt a bit like Half a King by Joe Abercrombie meets Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Chronicles (or any other Viking historical fiction). I definitely enjoyed those other stories more, though. This fell pretty flat for me overall.
I'm not sure if this book was translated to English, but most of the...
October 15, 2017
Novel of 9th century Vikings--what was unusual was showing their life on shore, mostly as farmers, and emphasizing women's lives. The protagonist, Ragnvald, is thrown overboard and is rescued by a fisherman. He has a vision of a "golden wolf" which he later feels is King Harald, who wants to unit...
August 31, 2017
This book was a one-off for me. I don’t watch Game of Thrones nor do I typically watch battle sagas of the early centuries, but I had a gut feeling about this well-researched novel, and I’m glad I followed my instincts. This historical legend, filled with myth, sorcery, and the harshest landscape...
March 08, 2017
Disclosure: I read an advanced reader's copy loaned to me by a friend.
I'm pretty choosy about historical fiction. Having read quite a few of the original sagas on which this novel is based, I admit to approaching it with a bit of trepidation. Surely it couldn't live up to the real thing, I though...
February 11, 2018
I know it’s only February 2018 but this is the best book I’ve read this year. It was one of those books, even at almost 450 pages, I wished was longer. I found myself slowing down toward the end because I didn’t want the experience to be over. Luckily, in the author’s note, Hartsuyker says there...