YAY TO ME for finally reading this book! ♥ I was wary for two reasons : 1) I don’t do well with non-greek myth (I read The Kane Chronicles and didn’t love it) and 2) I heard Magnus was ‘just another Percy’. Though I admit that there’s some similarity between the two, Magnus is still a strong character and The Sword of Summer is a really enjoyable read, especially for a fan of Rick Riordan ♦
The story started off strong with Magnus Chase, our sarcastic, dorky, and incredibly funny lead character, being chased by a bunch a gods and bad people. As the synopsis said, Magnus is a homeless kid who is actually a demigod–his mother was human and his father a Norse god. Magnus literally had no idea who he was, which obviously leads us to another classic ‘special snowflake’ trope. There’s clueless hero, quest, and prophecy, no surprise here. He died in the middle of a battle and his soul was taken to Valhalla (a place for dead heroes) by a Valkyrie named Samirah Al-Abbas.
Sam is a daughter of Loki who takes her job very, very seriously. She’s so dedicated to her job as a Valkyrie even after she was being kicked out. She’s strong and has so many secrets (!!!) and also she’s Muslim and occasionally wears hijab. Plus she shows us the struggle of being a Muslim kid at school. I mean, how cool is that?!?! Riordan really knows how to incorporate diversity into his stories ♥ also she’s kind of engaged to this Muslim boy and she’s actually in love with him. So adorable! 😀
The dynamic between Magnus and Sam was so so cute! There’s no romance! There’s a lot of bickering and scolding but it was pure F.R.I.E.N.D.S.H.I.P and it was refreshing (Sam is betrothed, remember?). We also have two very funny side characters, Hearth the dead-elf with a talent for magic and Blitz the dwarf with incredible fashion taste. They’re so hilarious 😛 I really enjoyed the characters and the way Magnus narrates the story and from the first few chapters, I could tell that I was gonna enjoy this book.
However, my enjoyment was fading along the middle of the book because I honestly DID NOT UNDERSTAND THE PLOT. It’s a ‘it’s not you it’s me’ kind of thing because I didn’t know anything about Norse mythology at all and it held me back from fully understanding the story. The fact that all the names and places are really hard to read (and don’t even ask me to spell them you know I can’t) didn’t help either. I spaced out a lot and I kind of just read without really grasping what I read? It was painful because the book was LONG. Like it could cut back 10 chapters or so and the story would still make sense.
The good news is, as the story progressed, the plot became clearer and we could finally see the bigger picture. So if you’re like me and the whole Norse gods’ politics confuse you, just go with it and you’d understand them eventually. Well… lie. I ended up googling Norse myth. So maybe do that too? >.< There are also several plot twists that I didn’t see coming, which is surprisingly delightful because I don’t remember many plot twists from Riordan’s previous books. The ending is also awesome because it ends solidly but leaves me wanting for more. I need The Hammer of Thor immediately!
Another thing I love from this book is that it stands between Middle Grade and Young Adult. I was worried I’ve outgrown MG, so this is a huge relief. Magnus is 16, which could be considered as young adult, but a lot of elements from the story are still better suited for younger readers. Also, Magnus Chase is the cousin of Annabeth Chase which is fantastic because I love it when previous character makes an appearance! Go cameo! I only wish Annabeth takes Percy with her when she visits Magnus 😛
ALL IN ALL, The Sword of Summer is a fantastic book that will make you laugh so hard and also want to learn more about Norse mythology 😛 Even if Magnus has some similar characteristic to Percy, I have to say that he’s his own person. He’s a strong lead character that you would love. This is also a solid first book and I can’t wait to read the next book ♥
Have you read The Sword of Summer? What do you think about it? Out of all Rick Riordan’s books, which book do you like the most?
I love Percy Jackson and The Olympians because it focuses on Percy and Annabeth (whom I love and ship so hard) and Greek myth but it was too MG for my taste, so my favorite is probably Heroes of Olympus 😛 buuuut I also really enjoyed Trials of Apollo because it’s super hilarious but there’s only 1 book so far, so we’ll see how that turns out 😀 My least favorite would be Kane Chronicles. Now tell me your favorites! ♥
Find more of me on my social media ♦