The young warrior Thorfinn is shackled to the ship of a Viking Raider, Askelaad. Askelaad's fleet of three ships successfully raids a settlement as mercenaries and recovers all the treasure for themselves before headed back to their village for the winter. Thorfinn has become a powerful and fast warrior, but treasure and ransacking towns doesn't interest him. He wants revenge on Askelaad for killing his father and stealing their ship. Thorfinn's childhood started in a peaceful fishing village full of proud Vikings. They were often visited by the explorer Lief Erickson, who would regale the children with stories of the beautiful country of Vinland, a place where winters are mild and the ground is fertile. After getting his revenge, Thorfinn would love to find the legendary country of Vinland.
I completely missed this series when it first came out, but I am glad to have found it with this reprint omnibus edition. This is a wonderfully told adventure story. I was fully drawn in by the end of the first chapter. Most of this omnibus is a flashback to Thorfinn's youth, so it was a really interesting narrative journey to start with Thorfinn as a young adult and then get to his backstory pretty quickly. This story is also beautifully illustrated with some amazing historically accurate details about the Viking's villages and ships. Every panel is full of details of characters and their surroundings.
Kodansha rates this for 16+, most likely because of the violence. There is lots of bloodshed dring battles, and Yukimura is not shy about killing main and ancillary characters on the page. There are also scenes of characters drinking alcohol, and there are some swear words.
These hardcover onmibus editions collect two of the original paperbacks that were released starting in 2009. The binding seems similar to normal hardcovers, so they aren't completely reinforced, but they should be sturdy enough to handle lots of checkouts.
Sara's Rating: 10/10
Suitability Level: Grades 10-12
Publication Date: October 14, 2013
ISBN: 9781612624204 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 10/10, Suitability: High School, Manga, Action Adventure, Historical Fiction, War, Kodansha
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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