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Viking Warrior (Strongbow Saga, Book 1) Paperback – March 15, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Strongbow Saga (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Northman Books (March 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0578076438
  • ISBN-13: 978-0578076430
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.2 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #457,184 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Judson Roberts brings an extensive, carefully cultivated knowledge of ninth-century Viking history to the Strongbow Saga. He also draws on a distinguished career in law enforcement, as a state and federal criminal investigator, a prosecutor specializing in complex major conspiracy cases, and a planner and director of several major undercover operations. He lives in Houston, Texas, where he is currently working on the next novel in the Strongbow Saga series.

More About the Author

Judson Roberts brings an extensive, carefully cultivated knowledge of ninth-century Viking history to the Strongbow Saga. He also draws on a distinguished career in law enforcement, as a state and federal criminal investigator, a prosecutor specializing in complex major conspiracy cases, and the planner and director of several major undercover operations. He lives on a small farm near Eugene, Oregon, where he is currently working on the next novel in the Strongbow Saga series.

Customer Reviews

I look forward to reading the next book in the series.
Michael S. Kraus
If you are interested in learning about viking history and love a great story this is the book for you.
M&D Wong
Once I started reading the book, I was hooked and found it difficult to stop.
Deborah

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 82 people found the following review helpful By Deborah on September 29, 2006
Format: Hardcover
"In one moment the Norns changed the pattern they were weaving in the fabric of my fate."

From the first line of Viking Warrior, Book One of the Strongbow Saga, I was drawn into the story of Halfdan, a fifteen-year-old boy who starts life as a slave but soon must meet the challenges of becoming a warrior. Set in the world of the 9th century Danish Vikings, Halfdan's life story is changed radically when his mother offers to sacrifice her own life so he can become a free man.

As the illegitimate son of a captured Irish princess and a Viking chieftain, Halfdan labors as a thrall, or slave, in his father's household. His only escape is into the woods he loves, where he masters the use of a bow and arrow. Whenever possible, he works for the estate metalsmith, becoming skilled at creating fine weapons out of molten iron.

When his father, Hrorick, is mortally wounded in battle, the Norns, or fates, weave Halfdan's life in a new direction. His half-brother, Harald, and half-sister, Sigrid, are forced to acknowledge him when his dying father makes him a free man. In exchange, his mother is sacrificed and buried beside the father that Halfdan has despised.

After his mother's death, Halfdan struggles to adjust to wearing fine clothes, dining at the head table in the longhouse, and accepting his new status as master instead of slave. Harald trains Halfdan in battle arts. Soon Halfdan has mastered the use of a sword and shield. He proves himself superior to his brother in the skill of archery.

Halfdan is thrilled to learn he has inherited lands of his own from Hrorick. But before he can claim his inheritance, he must survive the treachery and deceit of Hrorick's stepson, Toke.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Whitt Patrick Pond TOP 1000 REVIEWER on May 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Judson Roberts has in this book started a historical series well worth reading, first and foremost because it's an enjoyable read but also because he takes the reader inside Viking society and culture as it existed in real history rather than in the inaccurate portrayal we are familiar with from the movies.

The characters are complex and well-drawn, and Roberts does not flinch from setting the stakes high for them or from killing off characters that you come to care about. I thought he was particularly good at showing Halfdan, the story's narrator and main character, himself has to reassess what he thinks of people as events bring sudden changes to his life, realizing that what he once perceived things was not necessarily the whole picture. His thinking is forced to change, sometimes in very difficult ways, as when at fifteen his situation abruptly evolves from that of a mere thrall (slave), to that of not only a free man but an acknowledged son of a Viking chieftan, and then all to soon to that of a fugitive fighting for his life. A passage towards the end provides a good example:

"Though my heart protested, in my mind I knew Einar's counsel was wise. It was ironic. I'd often dreamed, as a thrall, of crossing the seas as a Viking raider. I'd dreamed of it as a path to adventure and glory. Now, it seemed, it was to be my path to vengeance. I wondered how long a journey it would be."

Roberts does a very good job of taking his time to develop the characters as real people and to show what Viking life was really like, particularly in how they viewed themselves and the rest of the world.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Elise on August 13, 2006
Format: Hardcover
At first this book was hard to get into for me because I am use to modern language, but after the first two chapters the intensity of the building situation involving the main character's mother drew me in. Soon I didn't even notice and the book was so good I couldn't put it down. There are only a few books that I have finished in a time span of two days (Harry Potter book 6 being one of them) but this one managed to make the list. With a wonderful historic setting this book creates the illusion of Denmark A.D. 845 so vividly you'd swear it were real. My only problem with the book is it is the first in a series and since it only just came out, it will be a while before I am able to read the next one. I will tell you it is not a cliffhanger ending so you will not die of anticipation. Other than that I loved the book.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on July 9, 2006
Format: Hardcover
When the Vikings raided Ireland, they captured several women including Princess Derdrui, whom like all the prisoners was made a slave. Danish Chieftain Hrorik Strong-Axe took his needs with Derdrui leaving her pregant. She gives birth to Halfdan, but because his mother is a slave and his father refuses to free him, the lad is raised as a slave too.

Over the years Halfdan dreamed of becoming a warrior like his dad, but only a free man learns to truly use weapons. When he was fifteen, the Saxons invaded and killed Hrorik. Derdrui wanting her son to live free strikes a bargain with Hrorik as he is dying; she would accompany him on his death ship provided that he frees Halfdan. The clan leader agrees making his second offspring a free man.

Already quite proficent with some weaponry especially for a slave, Halfdan undergoes rigorous training beyond that seen by anyone but may not be enough to persuade the clan, especially his half-brother Harald ,that a former slave can truly become a free warrior. Still in spite of the skeptics and his grief over his mother's sacrifice, Halfdan puts his heart into achieving his goal of acceptance as a free warrior.

The first Strongbow Saga tale, VIKING WARRIOR, is a vivid look at the Viking culture during the Dark Ages through the efforts of a teen to become an accepted warrior. The story line is extremely graphic not trying to dumb down or hide abuses from the targeted audience, high school teens. Thus historical fiction readers of all ages will appreciate this deep look at a bygone way of life in which the flow of blood is the norm.

Harriet Klausner
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