I mentioned in a recent #spellbooksaturday feature that I am making a conscious effort to read more fiction, and I’ve been reading a fair number of “witchy” novels in recent months, including…
The Weaver and the Witch Queen by Genevieve Gornichec
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Oddny and Gunnhild meet as children in tenth century Norway, and they could not be more different: Oddny hopes for a quiet life, while Gunnhild burns for power and longs to escape her cruel mother. But after a visiting wisewoman makes an ominous prophecy that involves Oddny, her sister Signy, and Gunnhild, the three girls take a blood oath to help one another always.
When Oddny’s farm is destroyed and Signy is kidnapped by Viking raiders, Oddny is set adrift from the life she imagined— but she’s determined to save her sister no matter the cost, even as she finds herself irresistibly drawn to one of the raiders who participated in the attack. And in the far north, Gunnhild, who fled her home years ago to learn the ways of a witch, is surprised to find her destiny seems to be linked with that of the formidable King Eirik, heir apparent to the ruler of all Norway.
But the bonds— both enchanted and emotional— that hold the two women together are strong, and when they find their way back to each other, these bonds will be tested in ways they never could have foreseen in this deeply moving novel of magic, history, and sworn sisterhood.(bookshop.org)
I have to say, I picked this book up on a whim and I am so glad I did! Gornichec builds her world with rich historic detail, and I was certainly enjoying fantasy elements anchored by the strong female leads, but just around the time I was growing bored with the heteronormativity there was… [minor spoiler] …trans representation! Too often trans characters are made out as tragic, and to see a trans character given the opportunity to be heroic, vulnerable, romantic, etc., was really lovely.
I have already recommended this book to several friends, and I hope you enjoy it too!