Time Warner Books sent me this book as part of the same package which contained Kitty and the Midnight Hour. And since I rather enjoyed that novel, I elected to give Kim Wilkins' Giants of the Frost a shot. The book will be released soon, so what the heck. And again, I was rewarded with a very interesting and enjoyable read.
As I've mentioned before, I'm not a big fan of the dark urban fantasy sub-genre. Having said that, following a major epic like Bakker's The Thousandfold Thought, Wilkins' book was a welcome change.
I truly had no expectations regarding this novel. I had never heard of the author, to tell the truth. Hopefully more and more people will now check her out! Time Warner also sent me her first novel, The Autumn Castle, which I will definitely read.
This tale revolves around one of the oldest clichés in storytelling: forbidden love. This is something that could push potential readers away. But Wilkins does a very good job, and she tackles that cliché in a very adroit manner.
The characterizations are at times wonderful, at times okay, and at times lacking in substance. The main character, Victoria Scott, is drawn in minute details. As far as three-dimensional characters go, you can't ask for anything better than that. Unfortunately, most of the "legendary" characters, those who live in Asgard, are not as well-drawn. Loki, in particular, left a lot to be desired.
The worldbuilding is particularly interesting. There is a rich blend of Norse mythology and Scandinavian folklore that is at times fascinating.
The premise of the story is quite engaging. Victoria, fleeing her mother and another failed marriage, takes a job as a scientist on an isolated island in the Sea of Norway. There, away from her problems, she hopes to complete her doctoral thesis. But she soon discovers that there are a number of mythic tales and rumors associated with the island. And more frightening than the island's mysteries is the fact that everything is hauntingly familiar. Then, a stranger appears on the almost-deserted island, turning her life upside down. To her dismay, she learns that their destinies are connected, dating back to a conflict centuries old.
Well-written, well-paced for the most part, Giants of the Frost is a fine novel. If you are looking for something a little different, give this Kim Wilkins offering a chance. You can also visit her website at www.kimwilkins.com.
The final verdict: 7,5/10