The Lost Sun: United States of Asgard, Book 1

By . 8 CDs, 9:56 hrs. Prod. by Listening Library. Dist. by Listening Library/Books on Tape. 2013. ISBN 978-0-8041-2173-6. $50.
Gr 7 Up—In an alternate United States where Norse gods rule alongside the civilian government, 17-year-old Soren Bearskin fights against the berserker rage inherited from his father. Most students at his school give him a wide berth until Astrid Glyn, the daughter of a famous prophetess and a seer herself, arrives and the two are immediately drawn to each other. The country is thrown into chaos when Baldur the Beautiful, the god of light, disappears. Astrid is certain she can find him with Soren's help. If they can return the god to his father, Odin, they'll both receive a boon and Soren can finally have his wish granted—to be rid of the berserker frenzy boiling inside him. Their quest leads to new allies and a deeper understanding of themselves and their fates. Robbie Daymond is well cast to perform the first title (Random, 2013) in Gratton's new series. His youthful voice engages listener's in Soren's story and the world he inhabits where seers are routinely sought to answers questions about one's fate and disputes are settled by intense individual battles. Daymond succeeds in navigating the teenager's emotional struggle, deepening and roughening his voice when the berserker rage escapes. He gives supporting characters distinct voices, and strikes a lighter pitch and occasionally a melodic cadence that is well suited for Astrid's dialogue. For fans of fantasy with a healthy dose of romance.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL

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