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Icefall (Dane Maddock series Book 4) by [Kirby, Matthew J.]
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Icefall (Dane Maddock series Book 4) Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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Length: 341 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Age Level: 8 - 12
Grade Level: 3 - 7

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for ICEFALL:

A 2012 Edgar Award Winner for Best Juvenile Mystery
A 2011 Agatha Award Nominee
New York Public Library 100 Books for Reading and Sharing
2012 ALA Best Fiction for Young Adults
Judy Lopez Memorial Award Winner

"[O]ne of the best reads of the season . . ." --DESERET NEWS

"[A] claustrophobic, thought-provoking coming-of-age adventure . . ." --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

"[A] taut, compelling mystery and survival story . . . Readers will be left thinking about this one long after the chill has left their bones." --BULLETIN OF THE CENTER FOR CHILDREN'S BOOKS

"[A] superb mystery enriched with powerful, believable characters, plot, and setting, and guarantees that readers will be thoroughly engaged to the final word." --BOOKS TO BORROW, BOOKS TO BUY, Nationally Syndicated Column

"Interesting, well-developed characters abound. . . . [and] the chilly, claustrophobic, ancient setting is vividly created." --KIRKUS REVIEWS


Praise for THE CLOCKWORK THREE
"In this riveting historical fantasy . . . debut novelist Kirby has assembled all the ingredients for a rousing adventure, which he delivers with rich, transporting prose. Mixing fantasy and steampunk elements with subtle urban mythology, Kirby's immersive story can be read as a modern morality play or a satisfying stand-alone tale." --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, starred review

"[M]emorable characters, hearty action, and palpable atmospherics." --BOOKLIST

About the Author

Matthew J. Kirby is the critically acclaimed author of the middle-grade novels ICEFALL, which won an Edgar Award for Best Juvenile Mystery, and THE CLOCKWORK THREE. He was born in Utah and grew up in Maryland, California, and Hawaii. Matthew is a school psychologist. He and his wife live in northern Idaho, where he is working on his next novel. Visit his website at www.matthewjkirby.com.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2709 KB
  • Print Length: 341 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Inc.; 1 edition (October 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: October 1, 2011
  • Sold by: Scholastic Trade Publisher
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005HE2ORQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #387,812 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on October 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
There's a certain breed of middle grade fiction novel for kids that defies easy categorization. Call them fantasies without fantasy. These strange little novels pop up from time to time encouraging readers to believe that they are reading about something fantastical without having to throw magic spells, ghosts, or singing teacups into the mix. Frances Hardinge's "Fly by Night" and "Fly Trap" fit this description. Ditto any book that really involves an alternate world. Now when I received my copy of Matthew Kirby's "Icefall" I had an inkling that it would definitely be that kind of book. This notion was confirmed when I flipped to the first entry in my advanced reader's galley and read the following classifications. They call it: "Action & Adventure", "Science Fiction, Fantasy, Magic", and "Mysteries & Detective Stories". Highly amusing since there isn't much in a way of science fiction or fantasy or magic here. Action, Adventure, Mysteries, and Detective Stories though? Tons! And entirely worth discovering too.

It's tough being the middle child. Solveig knows this, but it doesn't make her life any easier. Neither a beauty like her older sister Asa nor . . . well . . . male like her younger brother Harald, Solveig has never attracted the attention of her father, the king. Now with their nation at war, the three children have been sent to a distant mountain fortress to wait out the days until the battle's end. As they wait they are joined by their father's guard, the highly unreliable and frightening berserkers.
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Format: Hardcover
Solveig is the second daughter of the king, neither heir to the throne like her younger brother nor beautiful like her older sister. She and her siblings have been sent away to a remote, frozen hideaway to remain safe while their father is at war. Then the king sends a group of his deadly berserker warriors to watch over them. But it will be a long winter, trapped in their fortress with limited food. And soon it's clear that there is a traitor among them.

Solveig is a brave girl, but humble and unaware of her true potential. It's soon apparent that she's a talented storyteller, so she begins to apprentice with her father's bard. This is when Kirby shows his talent, weaving Scandinavian folklore into applicable stories in a beautiful and poignant way.

This coming-of-age tale is dramatic and thrilling. Readers of all ages should enjoy this fascinating story of honor, betrayal, and mystery. By the end, I was completely enveloped in Solveig's story and was swept away. This impressive sophomore novel is a standalone Nordic tale with the feel of an endearing fairy tale. Icefall is easily one of my favorite novels this year.
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Format: Hardcover
Last year I wrote this about Matthew Kirby's novel The Clockwork Three:

Amid the several highly anticipated children's and YA works this year by big names such as Suzanne Collins and Rick Riordan, one can be forgiven for missing the entry onto the stage of Matthew Kirby's first novel, The Clockwork Three. Forgiven, but no longer excused, for among all those much more hyped releases (though they are often justifiably hyped), this stands out as among the best. There. Now you know. You should get it. '

One might imagine, therefore, that Kirby's second novel, entitled Icefall, would have a difficult time matching the quality of the first. Darned if he didn't just do it though. Before I'd even finished it, Icefall was already on my list of top ten YA novels for 2011 and by the time I was done, as I suspected might happen, it made its way to my top ten fantasy novels in general. And fair warning to all those books coming out in the last few months: it's going to be hard to knock Icefall out of either list. Now you know. You should get it.
According to its publisher, Icefall is a Middle Grade book, for ages 8-12. I can tell you my nine-year-old son loved it, devouring it in a single sitting. I'll just point out, however, that I did the same (age 49) as did my wife (age 46). In other words, don't let its targeted age group deter you from picking it up; Icefall is easily better than 95 percent of the non-YA fantasy novels I've read this year. Easily.
The time period is ancient Norway and the only setting is a small fortress where a Viking king has sent his three children (Harald the young prince; Asa, the beautiful older daughter; and Solveig, the plain-looking overlooked middle child) for safety before he heads off to battle a rival warlord.
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By Pat Smith on October 31, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Icefall
Matthew J. Kirby
Published February 1, 2013
Paperback, 321 pages
0545274257
9780545274258
Synopsis:
Trapped in a hidden fortress tucked between towering mountains and a frozen sea, princess Solveig, along with her brother the crown prince, their older sister, and an army of restless warriors, anxiously awaits news of her father's victory at battle. But as winter stretches on, and the unending ice refuses to break, terrible acts of treachery soon make it clear that a traitor lurks in their midst. Those charged with protecting the king's children are all suspect, and the siblings must choose their allies wisely. But who can be trusted so far from their father's watchful eye? Can Solveig and her siblings survive the long winter months and expose the murderer before he succeeds in destroying a kingdom?

Quick and Dirty: This story is for anyone who loves tales of Vikings and the lore that goes with them. It's a story of finding one's self, danger, betrayal, and courage.

Opening Sentence: The fjord is freezing over.

The Review:

This story is about a Viking princess named Solveig who does not believe she has anything that makes her special and how she finds herself. Solveig's older sister Asa, is very beautiful and Solveig cannot compare to her beauty and their younger brother Harald, is strong and brave. When the three of them are sent to a hidden fortress to protect them from Gunnlaug, a man who would do anything to marry Asa, and steal their father's land. Solveig learns she can be more than she thought. Unfortunately someone that was sent to protect them is a traitor and Solveig has to help keep everyone safe and happy.

I had a hard time starting this book.
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