Written by Íeda Jónasdóttir Herman
Age Range: 8-12
Paperback: 152 pages
Publisher: Hekla Publishing LLC (April 3, 2017)
What to expect: Scandinavian Folklore, Family, Loss, Fears, and Growing-Up
Viking Kids Don't Cry is a middle grade novel that will have readers exploring
Icelandic myths (trolls and Hidden people), fears, loss, and the challenges of
growing up. It chronicles the family chores that young Didda partakes in and the
adventures she has in 1935. Didda's vivid imagination is center stage in this coming of-
age story as she describes a summer trip in which she travels by boat to stay with
her dear grandparents.
The author has provided many characters that propel Didda's story along, including
her sisters, Sissi and Lilla. Didda, the most developed of the characters, is a spirited
girl that often finds herself on the receiving end of loving scorn from family
members. She has an inner strength that shines through in all of the right moments.
Readers will surely admire her.
The setting will also sweep readers away. It is the backdrop that, more often than
not, holds the magic of this story. The ocean, fog, fjords, landmarks that represent
trolls, and the chill in the air are all well described for readers, enabling them to
paint their own picture of the areas where Didda and her family live and travel.
Readers that enjoy more traditional tales, such as Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little
House Books", and stories that embody magical realism, will certainly be swept up
by this gently weaved saga steeped in folklore and the Icelandic frontier.
--The Children's Book Review (thechildrensbookreview.com)