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The Weight of a Soul

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When Lena's younger sister Fressa is found dead, their whole Viking clan mourns—but it is Lena alone who never recovers. Fressa is the sister that should've lived, and Lena cannot rest until she knows exactly what killed Fressa and why—and how to bring her back. She strikes a dark deal with Hela, the Norse goddess of death, and begins a new double life to save her sister. When Lena's younger sister Fressa is found dead, their whole Viking clan mourns—but it is Lena alone who never recovers. Fressa is the sister that should've lived, and Lena cannot rest until she knows exactly what killed Fressa and why—and how to bring her back. She strikes a dark deal with Hela, the Norse goddess of death, and begins a new double life to save her sister. But as Lena gets closer to bringing Fressa back, she dredges up dangerous discoveries about her own family, and finds herself in the middle of a devastating plan to spur Ragnarök –a deadly chain of events leading to total world destruction. Still, with her sister's life in the balance, Lena is willing to risk it all. She's willing to kill. How far will she go before the darkness consumes her?


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When Lena's younger sister Fressa is found dead, their whole Viking clan mourns—but it is Lena alone who never recovers. Fressa is the sister that should've lived, and Lena cannot rest until she knows exactly what killed Fressa and why—and how to bring her back. She strikes a dark deal with Hela, the Norse goddess of death, and begins a new double life to save her sister. When Lena's younger sister Fressa is found dead, their whole Viking clan mourns—but it is Lena alone who never recovers. Fressa is the sister that should've lived, and Lena cannot rest until she knows exactly what killed Fressa and why—and how to bring her back. She strikes a dark deal with Hela, the Norse goddess of death, and begins a new double life to save her sister. But as Lena gets closer to bringing Fressa back, she dredges up dangerous discoveries about her own family, and finds herself in the middle of a devastating plan to spur Ragnarök –a deadly chain of events leading to total world destruction. Still, with her sister's life in the balance, Lena is willing to risk it all. She's willing to kill. How far will she go before the darkness consumes her?

30 review for The Weight of a Soul

  1. 5 out of 5

    Maja - BibliophiliaDK ✨

    I LOVED THE NORDIC MYTHOLOGY BUT DIDN'T REALLY ENJOY MUCH ELSE I love everything that has a whiff of anything mythological, so this book should have been right up my alley. Sadly, there wasn't much else besides the mythology that got my motor running, so to speak. Still, I was fairly entertained but not ecstatic. THE THINGS I LIKED Mythology: Like I said, throw a little mythology into the mix and I am sure to pick up your book. Nordic mythology is, for obvious reasons (I am a Dane), a personal I LOVED THE NORDIC MYTHOLOGY BUT DIDN'T REALLY ENJOY MUCH ELSE I love everything that has a whiff of anything mythological, so this book should have been right up my alley. Sadly, there wasn't much else besides the mythology that got my motor running, so to speak. Still, I was fairly entertained but not ecstatic. 👍 THE THINGS I LIKED 👍 Mythology: Like I said, throw a little mythology into the mix and I am sure to pick up your book. Nordic mythology is, for obvious reasons (I am a Dane), a personal favourite of mine. 👎 THE THINGS I DISLIKED 👎 Pace: The first half of the book was packed with so many things that it felt choppy and confusing. The second half almost put me to sleep. Lena: The main character Lena was a thoroughly unlikable character. She was moody, depressing and really not all that bright or clever even though she was described as smart. It sure didn't show in her actions... Beginning: I like a good in media res - emphasis on good! This one was not good. Some major things happened way too soon before I could connect with the characters or the story. Because of that the entire book felt sort of disconnected for me. ARC provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Follow me for more book goodness: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

  2. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Tammi

    BOOK TWO BABYYYYYYY I'm very excited to share my second book with you! Norse mythology is dark, strange, and endlessly fascinating-- the chance to explore it through this story has been an immense privilege and responsibility. Most of my family is Scandinavian, and my great-grandfather moved to the United States from Sweden at just 19 years old. All this to say that I feel very fortunate and fulfilled to have learned more about the place my family came from, and the history and mythology behind BOOK TWO BABYYYYYYY I'm very excited to share my second book with you! Norse mythology is dark, strange, and endlessly fascinating-- the chance to explore it through this story has been an immense privilege and responsibility. Most of my family is Scandinavian, and my great-grandfather moved to the United States from Sweden at just 19 years old. All this to say that I feel very fortunate and fulfilled to have learned more about the place my family came from, and the history and mythology behind the so-called "Viking Age". The release date for THE WEIGHT OF A SOUL will be December 3rd, 2019. I'm excited to share this book; it's brutal and cold and foreboding, much like the place and mythology it is grounded in. It's the darkest part of my heart. 4/22/19: WE HAVE A COVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)

    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight . I gotta say, the reviews for this one so far donot do it justice. I foundThe Weight of a Soul to be beautiful, heartwrenching, and full of love. And so, we shall discuss! What I Enjoyed: This book is quite literally about the worth of a soul, and how far you're willing to go to save those you love. That is the question Lena must answer when her sister Fressa dies- of reasons no one can You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight . I gotta say, the reviews for this one so far do not do it justice. I found The Weight of a Soul to be beautiful, heartwrenching, and full of love. And so, we shall discuss! What I Enjoyed: This book is quite literally about the worth of a soul, and how far you're willing to go to save those you love. That is the question Lena must answer when her sister Fressa dies- of reasons no one can discern. Lena and Fressa have always been close, this much is clear from the start of the story. Lena can barely muster the strength to go on, yet her clan (and her parents, the leaders) want her to marry her sister's beloved and Lena's own dear friend, Amal. Lena cannot bear to lose her sister, nor can she stand to marry her betrothed, so she's bound and determined to bring Fressa back. And this is where the Norse mythology comes in! I'll go ahead and admit it- I am a complete novice in Norse mythology (and most mythology if we're being honest). The author did a phenomenal job in introducing me to the world while still providing a cohesive plot and characters I grew to truly care about. I'll get into this more later, but I feel like I learned so very much about Norse mythology. And not just the facts, but the feelings behind it as well. Ultimately, the book is incredibly morally gray. Would you or I make the same choices Lena make? Can you really place a price tag on a soul? It's these questions that really made me think throughout the book, and even after I was finished. And if you know me, you know that's kind of my fave. Not Bad Stuff, But "Worth Mentioning" Stuff: While I really enjoyed the mythology, it was a darn good thing I read this on my Kindle and was able to look up stuff. There were a lot of people/places/things that I simply had never heard of. Upon looking them up, I was good to go, and frankly I personally love learning new stuff (especially in a book like this). But you know, just take it into consideration is what I'm saying. I will also say that I did predict a kind of big thing, but it didn't really lessen the impact, either. Bottom Line: A beautifully told story about loss, love, and hope in an historical and mythological Norse setting.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Alaina

    I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I really really wanted to like this more than I did. Maybe it's because I sort of forced myself to keep reading it when I was doing nothing else with my life but I just kept going in and out of actually liking The Weight of a Soul That doesn't mean I'm going to give up on this book because I really do like anything that has to deal with mythology and Vikings.. so I will definitely have to dive into it again but more around a I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I really really wanted to like this more than I did. Maybe it's because I sort of forced myself to keep reading it when I was doing nothing else with my life but I just kept going in and out of actually liking The Weight of a Soul That doesn't mean I'm going to give up on this book because I really do like anything that has to deal with mythology and Vikings.. so I will definitely have to dive into it again but more around a time where I can actually just sit down and enjoy it. In this, you will meet Lena. She's an okay character and so was her sister. Nothing was really special about them (at least to me) but again, I was in a weird reading funk with this book. I mean, we also don't know much about her sister Fressa because of what happened to her but I did find the whole situation pretty interesting. This alone was the only thing that made me keep turning the page. Other than that, the book was just kind of meh to me. Not a lot happened and I feel like I was left with a ton of unanswered questions. I was definitely hoping for another book of some sort - like a novella or two? Just because I doubt that I'm the only one who was a bit disappointed with it all. Then again, it could just be me. Here's to hoping there might be another book and to taking a second chance on a book in the future.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lea ♞ That_Bookdragon

    3/5 Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with a free e-ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest opinion. I don't think I'm the only one for whom this is the case but ever since I saw the first movie Thor when it came out no, it is not just because of Tom Hiddleston, although he played a huge part in my interest as well hehe, I have been really interested in Norse mythology. I have always had something for mths and legends of another time but for some reasons, the 3/5 ⭐️ Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with a free e-ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest opinion. I don't think I'm the only one for whom this is the case but ever since I saw the first movie Thor when it came out no, it is not just because of Tom Hiddleston, although he played a huge part in my interest as well hehe, I have been really interested in Norse mythology. I have always had something for mths and legends of another time but for some reasons, the world of Odin, Thor, Loki and others grabbed my attention and never let go. So when I saw that this book had mythology in it, I knew I would like it. Which I did. This story follows Lena as she tries to find a way to get her sister Fressa back after the latter died a mysterious death. I don't know why but I couldn't really connect with either of the character. Fressa died within the first few chapters so I couldn't really have a chance to do so but it was also difficult to like Lena. She was a bit stupid, not gonna lie... She acts impulsively and selfishly, even though I can understand why since she wants to have her sister back, but really it didn't really make a whole lot of sense to me at all. Lena's whole quest in this book is to find a soul which is as valuable as her sister's, but I found myself being a little bit disappointed and the twist was predictable. I really enjoyed the mythological elements incorporated within the story itself, however the pace was odd to me. Maybe it's because I was in a reading slump because of college and all my assignments but I really didn't find myself being attached to the story in the end. My Bookstagram

  6. 4 out of 5

    Annemieke / A Dance with Books

    Thank you to Flux and Netgalley for the review copy in exchange for an honest review. This does not change my opinion in anyway. The Weight of a Soul is a historical and mythological viking story. It focuses on the daughter of the chief of a Viking clan. She loses her sister and tries hard to find her back. That premise is one you can do a lot with. However at the end of the book I would say that the book was boring. Our main character has to find a soul that is as heavy as her sister to get her Thank you to Flux and Netgalley for the review copy in exchange for an honest review. This does not change my opinion in anyway. The Weight of a Soul is a historical and mythological viking story. It focuses on the daughter of the chief of a Viking clan. She loses her sister and tries hard to find her back. That premise is one you can do a lot with. However at the end of the book I would say that the book was boring. Our main character has to find a soul that is as heavy as her sister to get her back. Again, this is something you can do a lot with. Just about the whole morality of it all. Can you honestly kill someone else to bring someone back that is already dead? But there was none of that. Our mc has never killed before and is training to be a healer. But she barely blinks an eye to killing someone and is more busy with being caught than that she cares she took someone’s life, who wasn’t even good enough. And this book is just her trying to find the soul that is of the same weight. If you have read enough of these book than you know where this is going… It just did not make sense to me at any point. I didn’t understand this character who immediately knew something was wrong about the death of her sister when there was no hint or proof for that. She attempts to kill someone from her own clan and there are no consequences for that. We never even see this character again who was suppose to be her friend. And there were more things like that. I honestly think that the other side of her story, what her sister’s soul went through, would have been much more interesting to have read about and should have at least been told alongside our mc’s story. What I could appreciate was that the mc was not busy with romance. While she was being married off to her best friend there was never any true change of those feelings to one another. I liked that. It was realistic. At the end of it there was too little for me to love here. It is currently standing as a standalone but judging by the ending I would not be surprised if it turned out to have a sequel.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Maaike

    Maybe one star is harsh. Maybe it deserves better. Then again maybe it doesn’t. I found this book unbelievably dull. I kept praying for my interest to at least catch a spark and for me to please get invested in the story or even just the characters but it never happened. I started The Weight of a Soul four times before I finally made it through the first chapter and I admit that I skimmed most of the rest. I wanted a Viking-esque world, I wanted strong characters, I wanted an action-packed plot Maybe one star is harsh. Maybe it deserves better. Then again maybe it doesn’t. I found this book unbelievably dull. I kept praying for my interest to at least catch a spark and for me to please get invested in the story or even just the characters but it never happened. I started The Weight of a Soul four times before I finally made it through the first chapter and I admit that I skimmed most of the rest. I wanted a Viking-esque world, I wanted strong characters, I wanted an action-packed plot and delightful insight in Norse mythology. Instead I got a messy romantic drama concealed as a young adult fantasy and a bunch of half-ass gods. Okay not fair. It wasn’t all exhausting love triangles but at some point it felt that way. Lena is destined by birth to become chieftess of her clan, following in her father’s footsteps. Her father however, is no easy man to love. With him always gone at sea, forcing the other villagers to raid with him, there is little love lost between them. His disregard for others is (I wish I could say slowly but it really was more of an all of a sudden thing) weakening his position as leader. Which means that now more than ever, appearances are important. So when Lena’s sister Fressa reveals she is engaged to their mutual best friend Amal, it stretches already thin family bonds. A younger sister isn’t supposed to marry first and Amal is promised to someone else. But then Fressa dies. Sudden, unexpected and for no apparent reason other than she fell down and simply never got up. So far not so bad, I suppose. It’s an interesting premise. But that’s where it went wrong real fast for me. Lena chooses not to accept her sister’s death. She chooses not to accept it. No grief, no denial, just “no”. In her grand plot to get her back, she summons a ghosty horse and goes to meet Hela in the underworld where the goddess of death spins a tale about well, death and Valhala and the weight of Fressa’s soul. And that right there is when I called bulshit. It was all so .. easy? Like, I’m not going to accept my sister’s death so let’s summon a goddess and oh look it works and now a nice trek through some frozen wastelands and hi Hela can you please save my sister? There was some other vague but obvious foreshadowing talk but idk, when you lose my credibility it’s not coming back. Hela didn’t feel like an all-powerful creature of myth. She was just a one-dimensional character with the name of a god. Or so it seemed to me. Ragnarok was casually thrown in somewhere along the line and look that’s Loki passing by *wave*. And that’s my main annoyance. I missed thorough exploration in every single line. This book has no soul, which is pretty ironic. It misses depth, it misses atmosphere. Show me what life in this settlement is like, give me more than just a few casual descriptive lines. Let me breathe it. Build this world, this plot, these characters. It has potential, now let it ripe. The father’s storyline and his demise was so… underdeveloped. Other plot lines could have been so much more. They could have made me care. I’m sure they could have. Especially the relationship between Lena and Amal. Yet everything fell flat. And on top of that I didn’t even like any of the characters. If I had it may have changed my view on things but I was so indifferent towards it all. I had to look up most names for my review and it’s been less than a week since I finished the book. That shows just how uninvested I was. Still am. Maybe someone else would love this. I didn’t. Pity. Arc received through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Inge

    The Weight of a Soul asked some very intriguing questions, like how far would you to go save someone you love? How do you compare souls in the afterlife? Add a healthy dash of Norse mythology and make the setting a Viking village and yeah, I was pretty excited to read this. I also thought Lena was an interesting character to follow, as she slowly descends into darkness and despair. But the other characters felt flat in comparison, and it wasn't as action-packed as I would have liked. It would've The Weight of a Soul asked some very intriguing questions, like how far would you to go save someone you love? How do you compare souls in the afterlife? Add a healthy dash of Norse mythology and make the setting a Viking village and yeah, I was pretty excited to read this. I also thought Lena was an interesting character to follow, as she slowly descends into darkness and despair. But the other characters felt flat in comparison, and it wasn't as action-packed as I would have liked. It would've been nice to have had some chapters in Fressa's POV to counterbalance the dreariness. Nevertheless, I quite enjoyed this book. Thank you to NetGalley and Flux for providing me with a copy

  9. 5 out of 5

    Aly

    Okay, I loved that this is a Viking book and features Norse gods and goddesses! There aren't enough of these books around so I'm always happy to read them. This started out strong, fast pacing and lots of questions about what's happening. I liked the relationship between Lena and Fressa and that Lena would do anything to help her sister. As I got closer to the ending, I thought there must be a second book because there's no way all this will resolve. Well, I was (mostly) wrong. Things wrapped up Okay, I loved that this is a Viking book and features Norse gods and goddesses! There aren't enough of these books around so I'm always happy to read them. This started out strong, fast pacing and lots of questions about what's happening. I liked the relationship between Lena and Fressa and that Lena would do anything to help her sister. As I got closer to the ending, I thought there must be a second book because there's no way all this will resolve. Well, I was (mostly) wrong. Things wrapped up so quickly that I wasn't quite sure what was happening. I'm still holding out for a sequel because I still have questions and the ending is abrupt. Still a good, fun read!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ashlee » Library In The Country

    This cover is simply beautiful.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa B. ☽♡

    I love Norse Mythology and I'm always happy to read books related to it. Since I have read a couple of really good books about Norse mythology and a lot average, I have to say that even though The Weight of a Soul had potential it was an average book. My main problem with the book was the pacing. It was either too slow or filed with too many things that in the end made me confused. Moreover, I really don't like it when things happen with no reason and no explanation and this book had a lot of I love Norse Mythology and I'm always happy to read books related to it. Since I have read a couple of really good books about Norse mythology and a lot average, I have to say that even though The Weight of a Soul had potential it was an average book. My main problem with the book was the pacing. It was either too slow or filed with too many things that in the end made me confused. Moreover, I really don't like it when things happen with no reason and no explanation and this book had a lot of moments like that. I won't elaborate because spoilers. As for the characters, I didn't connect with Lena at all and that made it more difficult to like the book in the end. I think that this was a book with potential, but the execution and the main character could have been much better! Thank you to the publisher and the NetGalley for the ARC provided, in exchange for an honest review.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    An ARC was provided to me for free by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. After having a debut based in Greek mythology, Tammi turned her focus to Norse mythology here. Mythology of any kind is an auto-read for me, though I will admit I was a bit underwhelmed. This book is about sisters Lena and Fressa, who are daughters of their village's chief, and Amal, who is Fressa's lover and (hopefully) future husband. The book picks up with the arrival of the girls' father from An ARC was provided to me for free by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. After having a debut based in Greek mythology, Tammi turned her focus to Norse mythology here. Mythology of any kind is an auto-read for me, though I will admit I was a bit underwhelmed. This book is about sisters Lena and Fressa, who are daughters of their village's chief, and Amal, who is Fressa's lover and (hopefully) future husband. The book picks up with the arrival of the girls' father from yet another raid; the village's resources are dwindling and rival groups are moving in, making this a precarious time for Lena's village. Soon after Fressa is gifted a mysterious blade from their father, she is found dead. Lena, overcome with grief, attempts to find a way to bring Fressa back - by making deals with gods to trade Fressa's soul for another's. The premise was very unique, at least for me. I've read about characters going after kidnapped siblings, but never trying to revive a dead sibling through bargaining. I really like Lena's determination and desperation, which makes her do terrible things to get her beloved sister back. However, I do think the consequences of her actions are never quite explored, which is a shame. I think looking at the mental impact of her actions on herself would have been really great. Lena was also the only fully developed character. Fressa, unfortunately, doesn't have much page time before being killed. Amal himself is a bit...boring and mostly defined in regards to Fressa. We don't really learn much about Lena's village or its dynamics or traditions in-depth, which makes it seem like any generic village - instead of a specifically Viking one. The Norse gods themselves play a very minor role in the story. I mean, they exist and impact the plot, but they aren't really *present* (other than two key players). Mythology is glossed over a bit, and there's discussion of Ragnarok, but we really don't see much. Overall, it's a short and fast-paced novel, but I really wanted more substance. Lena was a great character, but she can't hold up the entire story. The ending did go in a direction I had suspected, but I rather liked it so I think that's what is saving it as a 3-star read. This novel is good if you're new to Norse mythology and don't want something filled with too many unfamiliar names and events. Blog | Twitter | Instagram

  13. 5 out of 5

    Katya de Becerra

    Reading this book was like being caught inside a devastating, wistful, beautiful dream. I could feel it all so vividly: Lena's raw grief and despair, the bone-chilling coldness of her world, and the gathering darkness heralding the approaching doom. Offering a fascinating new take on Norse mythology, The Weight of a Soul is about what happens when gods meddle in mortals affairs and how sisterly love and devotion can challenge the will of the cruel gods and resist fate. Amazing and Reading this book was like being caught inside a devastating, wistful, beautiful dream. I could feel it all so vividly: Lena's raw grief and despair, the bone-chilling coldness of her world, and the gathering darkness heralding the approaching doom. Offering a fascinating new take on Norse mythology, The Weight of a Soul is about what happens when gods meddle in mortals affairs and how sisterly love and devotion can challenge the will of the cruel gods and resist fate. Amazing and thought-provoking! INITIAL THOUGHTS: I finished this over the weekend (thanks to the author for my eARC!!!) and am still gathering my thoughts to utter some coherent praise this book deserves but OMG this was a WILD RIDE.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Evelyn

    Full review: http://evelynreads.com/the-weight-of-...

  15. 5 out of 5

    Madison Terwilliger ♥

    *I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review* This book wrecked me. This story was so beautifully written and entwined with emotion. When I finished the last page, I let my kindle fall into my lap and I stared at the ceiling in awe for several minutes. I was truly wrecked and also, heartbroken. LENA DESERVED BETTER!!! I struggled with the fact that this entire book was about bringing Lena's sister, Fressa, back from the afterlife. Halfway through the book, my *I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review* This book wrecked me. This story was so beautifully written and entwined with emotion. When I finished the last page, I let my kindle fall into my lap and I stared at the ceiling in awe for several minutes. I was truly wrecked and also, heartbroken. LENA DESERVED BETTER!!! I struggled with the fact that this entire book was about bringing Lena's sister, Fressa, back from the afterlife. Halfway through the book, my mind was screaming, "Who cares about Fressa anymore?! I love Lena and Lena alone! And Amal needs to love Lena as I do!!" And yet, Lena risks her life and reputation over and over again to bring Fressa back from Valhalla, a character we saw for 0.2 seconds. Oh and the ending, you guys. I shan't say a word about it but just, WOW. I never saw any of the twists coming. If I felt free to say spoilers, I would go more into detail about the ending and how I felt about it. But overall, it was a beautiful but deeply sad ending that left me more sorrowful than I ever expected to be from this book. I'm going to take a wild guess and say that this book will be receiving a sequel? The story ends with many unanswered questions and I dearly hope that Ms.Tammi will write another to answer them. Overall, a gorgeous, breathtaking, and deeply moving story that truly taught me "the weight of a soul".

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kim Chance

    Formal review to come but OH MY GOSH, this book was BREATH-TAKING! I loved it!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Goicea

    I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Flux Books and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! In no way does this affect my rating or review. All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication. Content Warning: Death, Murder, Conspiracy, Arranged/Forced Marriage, Assisted Suicide Lena realized that just as she had always expected the summer to stay, she had always expected her sister to be at her side. Because for her whole life, I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Flux Books and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! In no way does this affect my rating or review. All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication. Content Warning: Death, Murder, Conspiracy, Arranged/Forced Marriage, Assisted Suicide Lena realized that just as she had always expected the summer to stay, she had always expected her sister to be at her side. Because for her whole life, the summer meant sunlight--always--with no unexpected night cutting through it. Her sister had fallen asleep each night across from her, and Lena assumed she would wake with her each morning. How do you like your Norse stories? I like mine hearty. The Weight of a Soul is certainly that. It delivers a tale of young love, Norse gods and goddesses, and fate with strong allusions to impending doom. The story centers around two sisters who are daughters to the clan chief, Fredrik. Magdalena (Lena) and Fressa are sisters, as well as best friends. Lena is the eldest, and has studied all her life to become the next town healer and eventual leader. Fressa, conversely, has been brought up with the blade, and is known to be very skilled with it. Fressa, young and in love with Amal, is found dead shortly after her father returns from one of his year-long raids. The unhappy reunion proves even more bitter, as their father denies Fressa’s engagement to Amal, revealing that Amal was betrothed to Lena since the moment he arrived in the clan from Baghdad. Lena, Fressa, and Amal are all crushed by the news. Lena certainly doesn’t want to marry a man whom she sees as a brother, and one who is already, in his heart, devoted to her sister. After the engagement is broken off, Lena finds Fressa dead in the woods. As her world turns upside-down, Lena realizes at the loss of her dearest companion that there are larger forces at play, and each have a stake in what develops in the lives of these villagers. Only one thread of thought allowed itself clarity within her, and it was the knowledge that Fressa’s death had coincided with the alarming occurrences. The blade and the darkness were tied to her sister, somehow. Lena knew it. A blade of light, a sky of black. And her sister, between them--dead. From the moment Lena discovers her sister’s body, she knows that something is amiss. The oddities began when their father gave Fressa a blade after he returned from his raid. The blade, which seemed no more than ordinary, transformed in Fressa’s hands. Little did Lena know that this blade would lead her down a dark path to strike a deal with Hela, the goddess of death, in order to restore her sister back from the dead. Lena, desperate to return balance to her world, begins living a second life in order to appease the goddess’ demands. Through these escapades, Lena discovers that she isn’t alone, and is being watched. Lena nodded, urging him on. Her chest thrilled at the reminder that Fressa’s capability with this blade marked her as different--she was either blessed or cursed by their gods, and she had not lived long enough to find out which one it would be. After Fressa’s death, Lena and Amal’s mothers see no point in delaying the marriage between her and Amal. Desperate to stop the amalgamation, Lena begins to enact Hela’s plan, and therefore, forsakes herself in doing so. The further Lena travels down the path to regain her sister, the more she loses herself, and the truth that she does matter. But remembering what the initial intention had been for Lena and Amal, and knowing how hard Amal had recoiled and raged against it, all without Lena ever knowing...it hurt. Deep, penetrating, and almost tender in its unexpectedness. She had never wanted Amal. She certainly did not want him now. As their wedding day approaches, Lena spirals into despair. This portion of the story is where the only major hiccup occurs in this book. While the plot moves along steadily for the first third of the book, the middle slows down extremely. This is mainly due to the fact that it reflects the tone of Lena, and what she is going through. The entire tone of the story shifts into a heavy-ladened monologue of Lena’s suffering through this difficult situation that her station is forcing her into. They have made you a murderer. While I didn’t exactly connect with any of the characters, I connected with Lena’s deep emotions throughout this entire story. The choices she made, however very wrong, I could understand the place where she was at and the exacerbation she felt. (I would NEVER condone murder, so don’t misunderstand me, here!) Caught between her despair and loneliness, she does everything she can to appeal to Hela, and virtually sacrifices her sanctity to do so. Her character reflects a sort of martyr--not in the definition, but more in the sense that she’d sacrifice everything for her sister. This show of devotion to her sister is touching, despite the terrible choices she makes in the pursuit. I didn’t like that Lena never actually emerges from her dreary state. She continues to spiral downwards until she is basically put out of her misery by another. It is until this point that she fails to notice that she has any self-worth, and is where the story “lost” my ardor. While this aspect was lost on me, I still appreciated the process, and the insight into Lena’s experience even while she chose the dangerous and damaging path that she did. There was another topic touched upon that I really appreciated, which was the inclusiveness upheld within the clan itself. Amal, being an “outsider” at birth, has and is treated as an equal to those who were born into the clan. Several times, this statute is cleared noted, and those who do not agree with accepting others would be punished for disagreeing. You know well enough that clans are not of blood, but of chosen and championed bonds. Many of us come from lands far from this valley, found from trade or family or travel. The sole thread weaving us is the choice we made, and continue to make each day, to each other. If you feel otherwise, we will certainly be glad to discontinue your rations. Despite what I discussed about Lena’s character, I did like this book. I liked how real it felt, even if it was Lena’s desperate despair that I sensed. In all honesty, I ached for her character, and wished Because she never really grew from that, I’m only rating this 3.5 stars. I was rooting for her to, despite the inevitable pain, grow through her experience. Instead, she continued down a destructive path until someone literally made her stop upon her own request. It was at this point that she realized that she had some value--more value than she ever realized. Vulgarity: None. Sexual content: There is a scene where Lena plans to sleep with a man (not really) so that she can kill him, but her plan almost goes awry and he almost succeeds. Violence: Moderate, surrounding the topics listed in the content warning above. My Rating: ★★★1/2​ My Blog ¦ Bookstagram ¦ Twitter ¦ Pinterest ¦ Facebook

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kitty Marie

    Note : I received an e-ARC of this title, many thanks to Netgalley and Flux for this opportunity. The Weight of a Soul is a YA fantasy steeped in norse mythology. It follows Lena, a chieftain's daughter. After the death of her sister, Fressa, Lena becomes obsessed with somehow saving her by finding a soul of equal value to give to Hela, a norse Goddess of death. At about the 20% mark I was very drawn into this title and finished it in one engaged sitting. That's been hard to do as of late, so Note : I received an e-ARC of this title, many thanks to Netgalley and Flux for this opportunity. The Weight of a Soul is a YA fantasy steeped in norse mythology. It follows Lena, a chieftain's daughter. After the death of her sister, Fressa, Lena becomes obsessed with somehow saving her by finding a soul of equal value to give to Hela, a norse Goddess of death. At about the 20% mark I was very drawn into this title and finished it in one engaged sitting. That's been hard to do as of late, so there is a magical aspect to the author's writing or something about it that really appealed on a personal level. The writing style is dramatic, sometimes overwrought, but does well in conveying the painful inner conflict of the main character. Definitely not recommendable for everyone, but it worked out for me when it comes to readability. I really did not like Lena for the lion's share of this story. She is consumed by the loss of her sister to the point where I can't say much about Lena aside from "She loves her sister." She has few talents, goals, or noteworthy attributes outside of a truly one track mind and willingness to do anything (even ponder truly awful, amoral possibilities) to fulfill that singular goal of resurrecting her. Lena could be considered an anti-hero, which would normally be a source of intrigue, but I was often frustrated with her character and the flow of events. There is a rich tapestry of norse mythology to draw from, but major characters (Odin, Freya, Thor, etc) are referenced rather than directly involved. Barring a few exceptions later on and the aforementioned god of death. There are still some wonderfully described portions pertaining to norse mythology. Most of this book consists of Lena being unsure how to move forward and in a state of frustrated ennui which didn't make this a very pleasant reading experience. A large amount of space is also devoted to the newly strained friendship of Lena and Amal, Fressa's lover. It was mostly awkward and miserable to read sections pertaining to the two of them as there is low key tension between the two but I was quickly convinced that they would trade each other for Fressa in a heartbeat. The ending was a mixed bag of extremes for me. On one hand, there is real development and a frenzy of activity that was great to see and helped pick up the pace. On the other hand, (while not going into detail, and just aiming to keep this review spoiler-free) this is one of the most ill-conceived and just plain awful endings I've ever seen and it's of a nature that is particularly mind-boggling to find in a YA novel. (Note on this GR reveiw-At some point later (after some time has passed since the pub date) I intend to come back with spoiler-tagged thoughts on the ending, as there are definitely some things worth stating about it.) Though I'm giving this one star, it occupies perhaps a more favorable space within that rating. It's not the worst book. I think of the worst books as sparking no feelings or being unreadable/unfinishable. The opposite of love is indifference and I definitely was not indifferent to all that occurred here.

  19. 4 out of 5

    christina

    I received an ARC by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review Mixed feelings on this one, while the story was written well the plot itself was not as action packed as I had expected. Based on the blurb this sounds like a dark story about a girl who will do whatever it takes to get her sister back. This may be true, but the story spends most of it's time with the main character Lena crying over her arranged marriage to her childhood best friend and dead sister's lover Amal. ★ I received an ARC by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ★ Mixed feelings on this one, while the story was written well the plot itself was not as action packed as I had expected. Based on the blurb this sounds like a dark story about a girl who will do whatever it takes to get her sister back. This may be true, but the story spends most of it's time with the main character Lena crying over her arranged marriage to her childhood best friend and dead sister's lover Amal. Which yes is terrible, but instead of moping around maybe pull yourself together and actually stick to your deal? I just had no investment in the sisters or Amal, and the sisters' relationship wasn't fully developed. Maybe a few flashbacks could have helped? Moreover I felt mehhh about Amal and thought he was a weak unlikable character as well. I was also surprised that there was not more of an adventure or quest? The character never left her small village other than to randomly go see Hela in her own realm that took 2-3 sentences to get to. With her sister dead and Lena keeping secrets, she didn't really have solid relationships or dialogue with any character so you are just trapped in her cloud of depression for most of the book. Which is disappointing because there are other female characters her age introduced, but none of them are fleshed out. There just needed to be less family drama and more adventure! With lots of norse mythology and a twist ending you would think this one would be great, but sadly it just falls flat due to lack of action and depth between characters. There was so much potential, but this one is a miss for me.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)

    I received this ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review! CW: death of a family member, grief, arranged marriage, murder, and deception I wasn't entirely sure what I would get from this book when I went into it. By no means is it bad, it's just that not a lot happened and I was hoping for more. The book follows Lena. She's the older sister of Fressa. Her father is the chief of their clan and he's finally coming back to them after an expedition. Fressa is secretly engaged to Amal with I received this ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review! CW: death of a family member, grief, arranged marriage, murder, and deception I wasn't entirely sure what I would get from this book when I went into it. By no means is it bad, it's just that not a lot happened and I was hoping for more. The book follows Lena. She's the older sister of Fressa. Her father is the chief of their clan and he's finally coming back to them after an expedition. Fressa is secretly engaged to Amal with Lena helping keep that secret for them. Then, Fressa is found dead. Lena makes a pact with a goddess to bring her back, provided she brings a soul that's equal to her sister's. One thing that really stuck with me was the representation of grief. It felt so accurate. If I was in Lena's situation, there's nothing I wouldn't do to bring back my sister. But I knew it was impossible. You can never replace someone. For a while, I thought that was actually going to be the message. Lena learns that the task is impossible. But that's not quite it. It took so long for the book to really get to the point of it all that I was starting to get annoyed. I kept waiting and waiting and waiting for it to get to the plot that when it got there, I could care less. The plot killed me because it felt nonexistent since I had no clue what I was waiting on. The characters were fine but kind of forgettable. I never got attached to them, or as attached as I would have liked. There was depth to them and I felt for them, but I kept waiting for something that would make me love them. Overall, it was a fine book that was well-written with a good message, but it lacked a defined plot and standout characters to make it truly awesome.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kira Simion

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I wanted to love this. The setup and blurb cover all seeming so lovely. I had to retype my long review because it did not save. *insert tears* [Spoilers, spoilers, spoilers....spoilers.] What is the weight of your soul? Have you ever met someone who seems interesting at the first impression or has a good appearance and you believe more of some aspects from them as a result? Maybe you think they’ll be a good conversationalist in a subject. This book gave off so many impressions, but did not fully (if I wanted to love this. The setup and blurb cover all seeming so lovely. I had to retype my long review because it did not save. *insert tears* [Spoilers, spoilers, spoilers....spoilers.] What is the weight of your soul? Have you ever met someone who seems interesting at the first impression or has a good appearance and you believe more of some aspects from them as a result? Maybe you think they’ll be a good conversationalist in a subject. This book gave off so many impressions, but did not fully (if at all) deliver on them). The story is about two sisters being lost. One is lost to death and the other questions herself and who she is without her sister. The story has moments where the words flow smoothly, like the water Lena is afraid of, or the fear of death which has grasped her sister. However, it also seems to be a little unedited in that the beginning 20 percent would have been better as flashbacks instead and other little moments that could have made characters deeper were instead used to make more pages. The feeling of fear was written very well at times, the moment where Lena fears water, the moment she (view spoiler)[kills her friend/sister’s fiancé’s nana, (hide spoiler)] and near the end when her friend realizes the betrayal. The rest of the story seemed to be missing something...somethings. The plot was missing excitement as while Lena was looking for a way to resurrect her sister, the journey would have been better as memories, the goddess wasn’t very intimidating as all she wanted was a soul equal in weight for the sister’s, and then Loki somewhere appeared here and there (2xs in the book?). The romance was just fucked. I didn’t even expect it as 1. Why would Lena even try going for Fressa’s fiancé if they both haven’t had enough time to get over her, and 2. The romance was just forced. Why did they “have” to have sex (they said they had to)?? They really could have just faked it, because no one was in the room with them and it definitely didn’t seem necessary to try and squeeze that in there. The ending was alright, but the characters did not seem fully fleshed or rational (and one of the principals of economics says people are rational lol). The action was good, but many parts dragged on or weren’t really adding to the reason of why the character was even doing this. The Norse mythology with Loki and his daughter, the goddess of death seemed like a part where if I actually knew more about them beforehand, I probably would have cared about their characters. The story relies more on reading not in the book for these characters and some of the fantasy parts (aka the glowing sword for example). Overall, this sounded like an amazing story and I defiantly wanted to love it. It deserves another go-around with the editor and then maybe it can be the best that it can be. Edit: I moved the review to the top and the first impressions and disclaimer to the bottom. I received this from the publisher on Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. I am excited. Vikings, sisterly bonds, and action hopefully fuels these pages!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Nae

    I received an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much Flux! Well, this was a fun read!The Weight of a Soulhas a mix of mythology, family, and the sense of doing right or wrong. Definitely enjoyed this one, and I would have finished it way sooner if I didn't have a busy week! The writing I adored the writing style of the author. It was emotional and philosophical for me as it touches the topic of family—specifically a sister's love and estranged family I received an e-arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much Flux! Well, this was a fun read! The Weight of a Soul has a mix of mythology, family, and the sense of doing right or wrong. Definitely enjoyed this one, and I would have finished it way sooner if I didn't have a busy week! The writing I adored the writing style of the author. It was emotional and philosophical for me as it touches the topic of family—specifically a sister's love and estranged family members—and the morality of a person. The characters I liked the characters enough but I wish it had more characterization. We see Lena get consumed by grief and her dangerous determination to see her sister again. We see Amal try to get back up and put on a brave face. And Fressa, though she was a constant topic throughout the book, I don't know much about her or I didn't get to relate enough to her. The plot The plot was okay for me—it was interesting but I feel like the pace or the flow of the story seemed off. The first few parts were really interesting, the middle parts got a bit slow and uneventful, and the remaining parts of the book got really fast-paced. I liked that the author pulled some exciting plot twists that I didn't see at first! I loved that. The ending (as in the last two lines!) were shocking as well! I also expected more action, a battle or some sort of showdown, but those few great plot twists did it for me. Overall, I give this book 3.5 stars! (This review was first published on my blog.)

  23. 4 out of 5

    Dany

    1.5 stars Weight of the soul didn't outrun the "Outrun the Wind". Weight of the soul lacks a lot . Since I read Elizabeth's first book and loved it (gave it 4 stars) , I had a lot of expectations for Weight of the soul. But weight of the soul lacks the important thing Outrun the Wind had. The pacing. Pacing was so terribly slow and the plot was barely moving. Depending the whole book on one single plot twist (which was like , super obvious by the way?) was a terrible move. The book had a lot of 1.5 stars Weight of the soul didn't outrun the "Outrun the Wind". Weight of the soul lacks a lot . Since I read Elizabeth's first book and loved it (gave it 4 stars) , I had a lot of expectations for Weight of the soul. But weight of the soul lacks the important thing Outrun the Wind had. The pacing. Pacing was so terribly slow and the plot was barely moving. Depending the whole book on one single plot twist (which was like , super obvious by the way?) was a terrible move. The book had a lot of twists and turns with Lena's character . But I just can't get over how stupid and oblivious she is. I thank NetGalley and the publisher for granting me a review copy. All opinions are my own.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Patrick

    Ultimately I felt like this book just wasn't really for me. It likely has its audience, but I had trouble getting into it. I think my biggest issue was the characters. I didn't really feel anything for Lena most of the time. She didn't come alive much as a character for me and when she made some very drastic decisions, they often felt unjustified. I also felt like the plot meandered too much in the middle then just kind of ended within a few chapters. Further, the crux of the novel, Lena's Ultimately I felt like this book just wasn't really for me. It likely has its audience, but I had trouble getting into it. I think my biggest issue was the characters. I didn't really feel anything for Lena most of the time. She didn't come alive much as a character for me and when she made some very drastic decisions, they often felt unjustified. I also felt like the plot meandered too much in the middle then just kind of ended within a few chapters. Further, the crux of the novel, Lena's attachment to her sister, is only really displayed for a chapter or two on-screen and even there, most of the focus is on Fressa and her significant other, Amal. This made it hard to really appreciate the plot itself, even had I been more invested in Lena as a character in her own right. Pros: -Focuses more on sibling relationships than the usual romance arcs common in this genre -Features a Viking society and doesn't shy from incorporating fantastical elements from Norse mythology into its setting and plot Cons: -Characters aren't very vibrant or particularly interesting or likeable. -Plot is pretty slow-moving The book has plenty of other positive reviews and I enjoyed the author's other book, Outrun the Wind. So while I don't think I'd be especially inclined to recommend this book, I'm sure there are plenty of people out there who would like it. This might just be more of a taste thing. I received an advanced copy from NetGalley. All opinions herein are my own.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Liv the Jellyfish Queen

    I don't know what I've expected of this book, to be honest. I read the synopsys back in July or smth and received an ARC, and then promptly ignored it for five months. What I got was a gripping novel about Viking sisters, one of which (the sword wielding one) has been found dead by her sister (the healer one). And Lena (the healer one) just goes nope and does everything humanly possible to get her sister back. And let me tell you, I was invested! Lena was such a strong character that was willing I don't know what I've expected of this book, to be honest. I read the synopsys back in July or smth and received an ARC, and then promptly ignored it for five months. What I got was a gripping novel about Viking sisters, one of which (the sword wielding one) has been found dead by her sister (the healer one). And Lena (the healer one) just goes nope and does everything humanly possible to get her sister back. And let me tell you, I was invested! Lena was such a strong character that was willing to do absolutely everything needed to get her sister back. No if's and when's. Fressa or Nothing. Who would've done the things she did to get their sibling back? I can't confidently say I would, with all the love for my brother. I would've loved to learn more about Fressa, but unfortunately she died very early in the book and all information on her stem from Lena or Amal. All in all, very solid. I really liked it. Maybe if I were into Norse mythology more, I would've liked it even more, but even as a casual reader of Norse myths and legends, this explained enough to understand. This way, I can't even point out plot holes in how the gods behave, since I don't really know anything about Ragnarök, aside of it being the end of the world. Thanks to NetGalley and Flux for providing this ARC!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Edna L. (thebooknymph)

    My bestie wrote another book! Can’t wait to read it <3 I’m immensely proud

  27. 4 out of 5

    Veronica ( moon & coffee. )

    This review can also be found on my blog. C-/D+ | While the premise was good and interesting, the execution was unfortunately mediocre at best. The story drags on and on. The characters are boring. Although grief and denial are explored here, it was difficult to feel anything because things felt dry, flat, and stale. This book might be called The Weight of a Soul, but there’s little weight or soul in this book. Part of the reason why I requested this book on NetGallery and got excited when I was This review can also be found on my blog. C-/D+ | While the premise was good and interesting, the execution was unfortunately mediocre at best. The story drags on and on. The characters are boring. Although grief and denial are explored here, it was difficult to feel anything because things felt dry, flat, and stale. This book might be called The Weight of a Soul, but there’s little weight or soul in this book. Part of the reason why I requested this book on NetGallery and got excited when I was approved was because I was drawn into it due to the synopsis. Who could blame me? The idea of a sisterly bond so strong you would make a deal with Hela to try and get her back? Yes, please. I love books that explore sibling relationships and loss and grief. I can’t even begin to tell you how disappointed and utterly frustrated I am with this book. Everything — from the characters and their relationships to the plot to the ending — felt forced and unnatural at times. There was no emotion. This book goes into how souls have weight and one soul is not equal to another just because they’re both warriors. But where is this book’s weight? Where is this book’s soul? One of my biggest beefs with this book is that we’re always told things, but never actually shown evidence of why we should accept what we were told as truths. We’re told that the sisters mean a lot to each other, but never actually shown just how close their relationship was before Fressa’s death. Yeah, Lena is willing to murder to get her sister back, but if you want me to be able to empathize with her situation and choices, then I’m going to need more than being told of how good her relationship was with her sister. Give me flashbacks of the two as children. Give me memories. Give me something. This book would have been far more compelling if I got to see Lena and Fressa’s relationship for myself that wasn’t just Lena’s random thoughts of how she was the first person to make Fressa smile. Like, okay? That’s cool. Give me more. Another example of being told things rather than shown them is with Lena herself. She’s meant to become the tribe’s leader. Sure, she has to marry someone to gain that power, but her “destiny” (if you want to call it that) is to rule the clan. “No—she had hesitated for power. For her rightful place as the leader of this village and its clans.” Even she believes it’s her rightful place to rule. But she doesn’t act like a ruler. She doesn’t act like the heir apparent. If anything, she acts like a little girl playing dress up but will run away when responsibilities call. Look, grief does all sorts of things to people. It can turn them into people they never wanted to become. But see, the problem is that we never get to see Lena be a leader or at least try to act like one. We never see Lena attempt to help her people through these tough and terrifying times. She makes comments like: “ Her family’s hold on this village weakened with every day he stayed away, with every second the sun stayed out of the sky in the middle of summer.” And: “ Her family’s hold on this village weakened with every day he stayed away, with every second the sun stayed out of the sky in the middle of summer.” Knowing this, I would have expected to see Lena taking up the mantle in some shape or form either in the present or in flashbacks, but I got none of that. It’s so disappointing, especially because I feel like Lena never truly got a chance to properly grieve nor did she ever actually develop. She was the same person from start to finish, albeit with blood on her hands. (view spoiler)[This is made worse by the fact that Lena dies so she doesn’t even get to mature. Like wow, great. She brings Fressa back with her death, but at the cost of her never actually having full character development. (hide spoiler)] I don’t and can’t recommend this book. Despite it having an interesting premise, it was poorly executed. Thank you to Flux and North Star Editions over at NetGalley for providing a copy of the eARC. All opinions are my own.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Carola | booksanddpaws

    *I received an advanced copy from NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I liked this book, but overall (for me) it was an average read. In the beginning you learn about the characters and what their relationships are and I liked what was going on, but was not that attached to the characters. Later on, at around 50% I even thought about DNF'ing it, as I felt like their was not much happening and I was kinda bored. My interests in the ending kept me going. And I have to say that the ending was *I received an advanced copy from NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I liked this book, but overall (for me) it was an average read. In the beginning you learn about the characters and what their relationships are and I liked what was going on, but was not that attached to the characters. Later on, at around 50% I even thought about DNF'ing it, as I felt like their was not much happening and I was kinda bored. My interests in the ending kept me going. And I have to say that the ending was very interesting. I liked it when the Gods where getting a bigger part in the story and how things intertwined with each other. I would recommend it if you're into mythology, but don't expect a lot of (viking) action.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Savannah Porter

    This was just...weird. The storyline, the theme, the characters, the ending...just unnatural, forced, and strange. It didn't seem like a Viking world at all, and the characters seemed too orchestrated to serve the very strange plot. Maybe I missed something? And also...the ending had way too many loose ends. I like endings with loose ends. But this one had way too many, which led to confusion and a lack of emotion over the characters and their lives. Would not recommend. I received this book from This was just...weird. The storyline, the theme, the characters, the ending...just unnatural, forced, and strange. It didn't seem like a Viking world at all, and the characters seemed too orchestrated to serve the very strange plot. Maybe I missed something? And also...the ending had way too many loose ends. I like endings with loose ends. But this one had way too many, which led to confusion and a lack of emotion over the characters and their lives. Would not recommend. I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nora Eliana | Papertea & Bookflowers

    Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars I love Mythology. If you’ve read some of my latest posts you know this. But you also know that I’ve been very disappointed with, actually most, of the books I read. I’m still trying though. And Norse Mythology is also a topic I’m very interested in. But in contrast to Greek Mythology I didn’t grow up with these stories, so I hoped that it might be easier to like for me. I actually also read and reviewed Elizabeth Tammi’s debut novel Outrun the Wind and was disappointed. Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars I love Mythology. If you’ve read some of my latest posts you know this. But you also know that I’ve been very disappointed with, actually most, of the books I read. I’m still trying though. And Norse Mythology is also a topic I’m very interested in. But in contrast to Greek Mythology I didn’t grow up with these stories, so I hoped that it might be easier to like for me. I actually also read and reviewed Elizabeth Tammi’s debut novel Outrun the Wind and was disappointed. But I said that I would give her a second chance since I could see the potential. And here we are. I’m glad to say that I enjoyed The Weight of a Soul a lot more than Outrun the Wind. I don’t think it’s only the fact that I’m less familiar with the Norse Mythology and therefore can’t tell how accurately the gods are portrayed but it might have played a role. Just fyi. What I liked so much about this book though is how much we get to see inside Lena. We are with her the entire time, we get her reasoning, her feelings. I think it works really well for the story Tammi wanted to tell here. To be honest, I expected a more fast-paced novel where more stuff … happens … but I’m actually glad it’s slow-paced and more focused on how Lena is dealing with everything. I love these kinds of deep looks into a character. I still think I would have liked … more but overall I’m very satisfied with this. Lena is a complex and interesting character and I love how she does what she does, what her reasons are and that she is uncomfortable. It’s a little like those reluctant hero stories. Only that she’s not the hero here. And I loved that! Lena goes through a lot of different emotions but I loved how real and collected she always was. It fit so well and was very realistic with her being raised as the chief’s daughter. Prepared for leading alongside her husband one day. She understands people and power very well, sometimes better than those around her and I liked how aware she was of those things and how she tried to preserve that. Especially when in contrast to her sister. Their relationship was also really heartwarming to read about. I especially loved a sentence that comes a bit after Fressa dies. Lena talks about how Fressa just knows her without Lena ever having to explain herself or her reasons. She just naturally does, even though they are quite different. Or the quote about how the very things that Fressa excelled at and that defined her was also the thing isolating her … uff! Another thing I think is done very well here is the world-building. You can really see the Viking-inspired village in the cold north without the author really shoving everything in your face. It’s effortless and I loved how normal it felt that the gods are involved in Lena’s life. And although this may sound weird … I actually liked that the mythology side kinda took a backseat to Lena dealing with her grief. I mean, yes, it’s what propelled Lena to do what she does, but it’s still more in the background and I appreciated that. That being said, I sometimes had trouble really connecting with the characters. Lena is great, has good traits and flaws and I really grew to like her but the others stayed a little flat for me. I feel like that is always a possibility if you write in 3rd person but focus only on one person (Lena). I always felt a bit distanced. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed my time reading. The book was also a little predictable but I didn’t care all too much because I liked following Lena and her realizing stuff. But I thought you should know. I think The Weight of a Soul is definitely worth checking out, especially if you like character-focused stories that deal a lot with the emotions of the main character. The Norse myths were incorporated really well and I had a great time reading this. Glad I gave Elizabeth Tammi a second chance!

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