Richard Örlendr died over a thousand years ago. He lived in Norway during the Germanic Iron Age and trusted in the judgement of the gods. That is not to say he did not question them when they gave him a dragon, nor did he blindly follow their orders when they told him to go to war. But, when one god told him to kill another, Richard was unable to rely on their wisdom. He had to trust in the Norns.
The Norns guide fate. They shape it past, present, and future; however, it is not set in stone. A hero can change his fate. A hero can chose his destiny. The Norns can weave a new life, but what happens if the Norns are dead? Do heroes have greater freedom? Or are they locked into their destiny since there is no one left to weave?
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Not Particularly Gripping
This book was first reviewed on Kurt's Frontier.
Richard Orlendr’s story takes place in the Norse world. He clung to the ancient ways and trusted his gods. However, he wasn’t sure why they gave him a sarcastic dragon. He did not charge blindly at their orders. The goddesses of Fate, the norns, may be no more. Does that mean he can change his fate in a world hostile to people touched by magic?
Richard, his cousin Eadric, and Aiden the dragon set off on a quest to find the truth. Richard shares an empathic bond with Aiden that allows them to communicate over distance. Creatures of legend (in addition to the dragon) are dogging their steps. What’s left of the two clans of gods, the Æsir and Vanir, are at war and vying for control of Richard and Aidan. Ultimately, Richard has to choose.
Alexander F. Patterson’s novel, Choices, is set in the realm of Midgard. When one of the last gods gifts Richard with a dragon, it means trouble. Part of the mystery is who Richard and Aidan can believe among the forces warring on their world. Mages are hunted by special hunters. (Granted, some mages haven’t been all that nice to non-magical people.) Eadric is a young mage in training. Richard is developing magic powers because of his connection to Aiden. Definitely big trouble.
It wasn’t a particularly fast read. Richard isn’t cast into the role of a typical Norse hero. This made it easy to feel for him. It was an all right read but not particularly gripping.