November 4, 2016
The Hammer of Thor (Magnus Chase and the God’s of Asgard) by Rick Riordan
Magnus Chase isn’t sure what to expect when his valkyrie, Sam, invites him to meet her for coffee. She’s been distracted lately and he’s hoping to find out what’s going on. What he isn’t expecting is to encounter a goat assassin who leads him on a chase across the roof tops of Boston.
Suffice it so say that The Hammer of Thor is every bit as zany as The Sword of Summer which ends about two months before this book begins. In this volume, readers learn more about the elf Hearthstone and his family as well as Sam, the Muslim valkyrie. Yes, you read that right. She’s both a valkyrie, carrying deceased warriors to Asgard, but also a dutiful Muslim.
But she’s also the chosen bride of a vengeful stone giant. Magnus has to find a way to help her escape matrimony and also locate Thor’s missing hammer. All of this means having to work with the latest resident of Asgard, Alex. Like Sam, Alex is a child of Loki but Alex is every bit as variable as their father.
Ok, I admit it. I so want to discuss a particular point in the story but just deleted a few sentences. Suffice it to say that Riordan gets into some aspects of Loki’s background that I knew about and was wondering if the author would find a way to address.
Alex is gender fluid which makes her . . . or him . . . a hard character to interpret. Some days Alex is definitely male. Others she is undoubtably female which plays directly into the group’s plans to defeat Loki and his stone giant allies.
I have to say that I actually liked this book better than The Sword of Summer. I was definitely in the mood for both adventure and humor and Riordan wove both into this story.
If your young reader isn’t family with Magnus Chase, pick up these books to share. Stories that feature mythology are fabulously popular right now and I love this character. Magnus is a character who works hard to be true to his friends, doesn’t turn his back on his family, all the while struggling to discover who he really is.
Need a Christmas gift idea? Pick up this fast paced story and share it with the young reader in your life.