Book Review: The Testament of Loki by Joanne Harris

Summary:

Ragnarok was the End of Worlds.

ttol-coverAsgard fell, centuries ago, and the old gods have been defeated. Some are dead, while others have been consigned to eternal torment in the netherworld – among them, the legendary trickster, Loki. A god who betrayed every side and still lost everything, who has lain forgotten as time passed and the world of humans moved on to new beliefs, new idol and new deities . . .

But now mankind dreams of the Norse Gods once again, the river Dream is but a stone’s throw from their dark prison, and Loki is the first to escape into a new reality.

The first, but not the only one to. Other, darker, things have escaped with him, who seek to destroy everything that he covets. If he is to reclaim what has been lost, Loki will need allies, a plan, and plenty of tricks . . .

Goodreads

Thoughts:

I fully expected to come into this book liking it even more than the first one but that’s not exactly what happened. I guess I wasn’t really expecting what I got at all and maybe that was part of the problem for me–expectations. Still, I had a lot of fun with this one even if it wasn’t what I thought it was going to be.

Let me explain a bit. The first book was basically a retelling of the Norse Myths from Loki’s very skewed but always entertaining point of view. It was hilarious and at times poignant. The reader really got a sense of Loki’s isolation from the other gods and his loneliness (although it was hard to feel sorry for him for too long because then he’d be off causing trouble again!)

So, when I picked up this second volume, which takes place post-Ragnarok, I thought it would be more along those lines. But it wasn’t. Instead, after Loki is awakened and looking to escape his prison, he finds a way out only to be sucked into our own modern world via the means of a Norse Mythology themed video game. He finds himself sharing the body of the teenage girl who accidentally summoned him, Jumps. And Jumps is not a fan of Loki (she’s a fan of Thor, which rankles Loki to no end). So the setting change from the first book to the second is completely jarring at first, especially since I listened to these books within a month of each other. Also the fact that Loki isn’t exactly in his own form took me some getting used to!

However, after adjusting to all the new and different things, I found myself really enjoying this one. It’s a different kind of story, but in some ways it’s the same. Jumps actually has some things in common with Loki, especially the whole ‘feeling like an outsider’ thing. Loki finds himself in a mentor-ship role in this story, which, lets face it, is outside of his wheelhouse. So, after being a complete knob (aka Loki) for a bit, he actually begins to care for Jumps and tries to help her gain some confidence in her life (one thing he’s never really lacked). It’s through helping Jumps that we get to see Loki experience some growth as a character, and there’s the payoff that we’ve been waiting for since the first book.

Oh, and for added fun, Loki isn’t the only one who has been catching rides in other bodies in this modern world. He runs into Odin pretty quickly. Odin, true to character, acts happy to see Loki but wants his help in summoning Thor, and Loki being jealous Loki, does what any Loki would do and gets Thor trapped into the body of a tiny lap dog ‘by accident’. These are just some of the hijinks within the pages of this book.

This is definitely worth a read if you enjoyed the first book, especially because Loki is still very much Loki, but probably best to prepare yourself going in that it’s not a lot like the first book as far as storytelling and setting. Still a very fun book, and there’s a lot to like about Loki’s journey here. 3.5/5 stars.

 

 

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13 thoughts on “Book Review: The Testament of Loki by Joanne Harris

Add yours

  1. I enjoyed this one more than you I think even though it was completely different than I’d expected – I just loved the relationship between Loki and the person whose body he was dwelling in.
    Lynn 😀

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