Honestly the whole Viking thing has never really interested me; horned helmets, nude berserkers, raping, pillaging etc, but having read Cornwell before and needing a historical fiction fix, I decided to take the plunge with The Last Kingdom, and it was amazing. Pure enjoyment!
Uhtred son of Uhtred, has this glorious, inclusive first person narration of his past, always drawing you into his story with little comments and ruminations about his thoughts and feelings on the happenings within the storyline. It was like sitting beside the hearth with an old friend, ale in hand, as he tells the story of his youth. I was so at ease with his gruff warriors voice, compelled to listen. I haven't been this captivated with a first person natrative in a very long time.
It was definitely filled with raping and pillaging, you can't get away from the history, but the reader is let into the Northman's world to see they aren't just brutal killers, they are human. They are husbands, fathers, likeable, funny and incredibly emotional.. And they never wore horned helmets! Praise Odin..
Sometimes, you just need to settle down to a good, well told yarn. You don't need to speculate or do mental gymnastics to try and piece the story together, it's just beautifully written, well thought out and the plot line is captivating enough to keep you on the edge of your seat. And hey, there's no need to worry too much about the future of the world, because you already know what happens!
I can't wait to settle back down with Uhtred, and listen to more of his Saxon's tale.. This review was originally posted on Book Frivolity