Thursday, 3 September 2015

A Flame Put Out

A Flame Put Out

by Erin Riley

5 out of 5

Selia’s saga continues in Book Two of the SONS OF ODIN series . . .

As Selia struggles with the harsh reality of existence as the wife of a Viking berserker, a devastating loss pulls Alrik deeper into madness, while a secret Selia desperately wants to keep hidden comes to light, threatening everything she holds dear.

Is Selia’s love for Alrik enough to keep her in Norway? Or will the protection offered by Alrik’s brother Ulfrik sway her to leave?

Selia has made her choice, to defend her love for Alrik.  She never forgets Ireland, but it's time to stand up and be the Hersir's wife.  No matter the consequences.

So A Flame Put Out follows straight on from Odin's Shadow, which I read and reviewed back in May (click here for the review).  And I will just say that this series is definitely keeping it's place in my Top Ten indie reads!

After discovering her mother and Ulfrik were both hiding things from her and manipulating her, she has run back to Alrik.  They salvage their relationship, and Selia has to put all her energy into dragging Alrik out of his dark mood, as well as focusing on the well-being of their child.
Together they have to prove that Alrik is still Hersir, still worthy of every man's loyalty and allegiance.

Everything that I loved about the first book has continued here.
The Viking background that Riley gives you is woven subtly, giving the story an authentic feel, without ever trying to overwhelm you with facts, or give you a history lesson.
There is also a feeling of reality over every character.  No one is perfect, no one is romanticised.  Love is the reason they keep working at their tumultuous relationships, but it does not magically fix things, or create a happy ever after.
I love Riley's writing style - it pulls you smoothly along, and you dare to hope for certain characters; but it can suddenly pull you in a direction that you wouldn't have guessed.  I enjoyed every minute of it.

We get to see Selia grow into a lovely, confident young woman, who becomes the only person that can cut off her husband's rages.  It is interesting to see her develop as a mother, trying to compromise between Alrik's brutal upbringing, and Niall's gentler approach.

Alrik is a big child himself, jealous of any time his wife spends with others, including their sons.  And as he grows older, his beserker nature threatens everything, as he stands on the brink of the same madness that destroyed his father.

Ingrid - she is definitely my favourite character.  She is strong, and confident, and can hold her own against any man.  She has no intention of being a damsel in distress, and has her father's arrogance and courage.

Ok, so when's Oathbreaker coming out?

Goodreads link

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