A gripping tale of magic, adventure and Norse mythology from the SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author of CHOCOLAT and THE GOSPEL OF LOKI.
It's been five hundred years since the end of the world and society has rebuilt itself anew. The old Norse gods are no longer revered. Their tales have been banned. Magic is outlawed, and a new religion - the Order - has taken its place.
In a remote valley in the north, fourteen-year-old Maddy Smith is shunned for the ruinmark on her hand - a sign associated with the Bad Old Days. But what the villagers don't know is that Maddy has skills. According to One-Eye, the secretive Outlander who is Maddy's only real friend, her ruinmark - or runemark, as he calls it - is a sign of Chaos blood, magical powers and gods know what else...
Now, as the Order moves further north, threatening all the Worlds with conquest and Cleansing, Maddy must finally learn the truth to some unanswered questions about herself, her parentage, and her powers.
From the bestselling author of CHOCOLAT and THE GOSPEL OF LOKI comes a fantastical tale of magic, adventure and Norse mythology.
Especially enjoyable are Harris' aphorisms, her satire of joyless piety and the comically irreverant vernacular spoken by a dissolute goblin and the trickster god Loki - THE SUNDAY TIMES
Harris creates a glorious and complex world replete with rune-based magical spells, bickering gods, exciting adventures and difficult moral issues - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
Her dramatic story rollocks along for 536 pages with magical transformations, nets of blue fire and a spunky heroine - THE TIMES
Goblins, glams, ancient gods and subterranean adventure - SUNDAY TELEGRAPH
Joanne Harris deploys a big cast in relentless action across a cosmic panorama. This is a mighty feat of storytelling and a fascination re-envisionment of Norse mythology - BOOKS FOR KEEPS
A fantastic romp through the world of ancient magic, which should appeal to all adventure lovers - INIS
Rich, comic, dark and brilliantly conceived - READING TIME
Joanne Harris is the author of the Whitbread-shortlisted CHOCOLAT (made into an Oscar-nominated film starring Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp) and many other bestselling novels. Her hobbies are listed in Who's Who as 'mooching, lounging, strutting, strumming, priest-baiting and quiet subversion'. She plays bass guitar in a band first formed when she was 16, is currently studying Old Norse, and lives with her husband and daughter in Yorkshire, about 15 miles from the place she was born.
Find out more at www.joanne-harris.co.uk or follow her on Twitter @Joannechocolat