Dead Chaos is the latest installment in the Valkyrie series. It picks up immediately where Dead Embers left off. Valkyrie Bryn no longer has her wings and is in shock, as her friends try to comfort her and get her to return to Asgard. She refuses and insists on seeing the evidence of what was done to her. As you might expect, it was nothing less than shocking.
When Bryn returns to Asgard, she no longer feels like she is a Valkyrie. Learning of a prophecy that states she will be responsible for the All-Father’s death, she takes off to visit the Fates at the base of the Tree of Life. This begins a journey for Bryn that is probably her most important yet.
Dead Chaos is a wonderfully crafted narrative and if you enjoyed the first two novels it will surely satisfy your need to hear the continuation of Bryn’s journey. Bryn may doubt herself, but this is part of what makes her strong – you can’t be brave if you don’t have fear. Though she may no longer have her wings, and doesn’t feel like a real Valkyrie anymore, she proves to be just as brave – if not braver – as some of her counterparts, and true at heart. Bryn gets hit with continual revelations about those around her and about herself. Someone she thought she knew and loved, turns out she didn’t really know at all. Despite all the battles that Bryn has to go through she comes through on the other side with perspective, not an inflated ego. She’s not indestructible and neither is her heart. Though it’s quite possible, even with the loss of her wings, that her heart truly takes the hardest hits.
One of the final revelations confirms a suspicion I’ve had since the first novel, but it doesn’t feel tacky or out of place. It just fits – like so much of the writing, it’s natural. We have visited some of the places in the nine worlds on Bryn’s journey and with any luck, maybe we’ll get to see the rest before her story is really over, or Ragnarok comes and destroys it all anyway.
Since I’ve never been much of a comic book fan, I didn’t know about Thor until the movie, and Norse mythology has always been one of the “other” mythologies. Greek, honestly, has always been my favorite. But Dead Radiance change that for me. It’s made me want to know more about the Valkyries, I want to know more about Fen and Loki, and even just their relationship (as Loki is Fen’s father). I can say without a doubt this series has inspired me; possibly I’ll find the answers I’m looking for in my own research.
In the meantime, if you’re looking for books that incorporates mythology into our contemporary world, then this is a series for you to pick up. Don’t forget to start with Dead Radiance and work your way through Dead Chaos.