Frostborn, by Lou Anders

While I doubt Lou Anders's Thrones & Bones: Frostborn will attract much of an adult audience, it's the kind of novel parents will love to read out loud to their kids. Anders divides his story between Karn, a human boy destined to inherit his father's farm (and the countless mind-numbing responsibilities that come with it), and Thianna, a half-giant, half-human girl who feels like she'll never fit in anywhere. Karn and Thianna aren't overly impressed by one another at their first meeting (or even their second), but when a series of disasters forces them to flee into the wilderness, they discover their different talents make them into an unexpectedly effective team.

This is Anders's debut novel, but his Hugo Award-winning work as an editor stands him in good stead. Frostborn features a judicious balance of action scenes and character development, humor and drama, Norse mythology and straight-up adventurin'. It lacks the darker elements that gave Jonathan Stroud's thematically similar Heroes of the Valley a wider age appeal, but it's still a satisfying, smart, imaginative story that preteen fantasy fans will find totally engrossing.

Review based on publisher-provided copy.
Posted by: Julianka


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