Freedom of the Waves
by Peter L. Ward
Trafford Publishing

"Let us call him Vimp the Viking. Our own son, who only last week helped a wounded warrior off a raiding boat. He carried half his loot back to his hut and didn't have the sense to take any for himself or his family."

With a clear knowledge of the myths and legends of the ancient Norse and Saxon gods, Ward weaves a story of adventure and budding young affection throughout his three-book series. Books included in this single volume collection include "Vimp the Viking's Epic Voyage," "Freya and the Fenris Wolf," and "Eric and the Mystical Bear." Each story is beautifully illustrated with a number of full-page images that bring the legendary creatures and characters to life.

It is an adventure that many young people dream of. Disillusioned by the expectations of their parents and society, a group of young Vikings make a daring escape across the waves toward the land of the Saxons, the people who have been murdered and robbed by the children's parents and elders. Having violated the beliefs of their people and the rules of their gods, the young people would never survive without the special powers held by one among them. As they work to shape their own beliefs and carve out a new life for themselves, the children learn a lot about life, friendship, love, courage, and being accepting of each others' differences and unique talents.

Not only does Ward's storytelling compel readers to continue turning the pages, but his awareness of the ancient legends clearly informs the text. Written for children in the middle age group, the story has enough wild adventure to appeal to boys as well as enough romance to appeal to girls. However, traditional gender roles are broken on a consistent basis, leaving plenty of room for children to identify themselves in strong roles throughout the book.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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