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Midnight Burning by Karissa Laurel

Monday, August 17, 2015
fantasy, paranormal, fiction, romance, On My Kindle, book review, eBook, book

Solina Mundy, a baker from North Carolina, has never wandered far from her family's bakery whereas her twin brother, Mani, struck out on his own and traveled to Alaska where he found a job as an adventure guide. Despite the great distance between them, the bond between Solina and Mani was not diminished. Mani shared his adventures in the Alaskan wilderness with Solina and encouraged her to discover adventures on her own, but Solina was content to continue helping her parents with the family business.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

One night Solina had a nightmare about Mani being brutally attacked and killed by a wolf-like creature. The next morning, the family was notified that Mani died from what appeared to be an attack by a wild animal; however, his apartment showed signs of a break-in. Unable to ignore what she saw in her nightmare, Solina travels to Alaska to settle her brother's affairs and investigate the odd circumstances surrounding Mani's death.

Solina considers the flight to Alaska an adventure in of itself, but she discovers that she plays a vital role in an epic battle that was waged centuries ago between Norse gods; a battle that will determine the fate of humans and gods alike.


My first impression of Midnight Burning by Karissa Laurel was that Mani got caught in a war between two groups of supernatural creatures; which is not entirely true. About halfway through the book, readers discover that the opposing sides in the upcoming battle are Norse gods and the battle being waged is Ragnarok. I was not disappointed by this twist, but I was a little surprised. I found it a refreshing change from the werewolf versus vampire theme, and I happen to enjoy reading modern interpretations of legends from different cultures.


There are a few elements in the story that some readers may have a problems with: first, the story starts out slow; however, it does pick up about half way through the book. Laurel spent some time developing the characters and their back stories; I found that this added depth and originality to the story, and I am happy that I kept reading.


Second, Solina's character seems weak in the beginning, and her personality does change rapidly once she discovers more about her true nature. Some may find this sudden change unrealistic, but it felt like she was "faking it until she could make it;" in other words, she put on a show while she internalized who she really was.

Third, the two men vying for the role of Solina's romantic interest appear to be overbearing chauvinists; however, given their true natures, it's not surprising that they are not in touch with their sensitive sides.


Finally, some readers may find that the revelation of Solina's true nature occurred a little late in the book, but I thought that the timing of this discovery was appropriate since it would not have been realistic if a naive baker from North Carolina had advanced knowledge of Norse legend and mythology.


Despite the slow start, I am glad that I stuck with the story. Midnight Burning by Karissa Laurel is a modern interpretation of a Norse legend and a really enjoyable read. I am anxious to read more about Solina and the upcoming battle in the next book of this well-written and fascinating series.
Photo courtesy of  karissalaurel.com

To learn more about Karissa Laurel and her book, Midnight Burning, check out Karissa's website. It features: a blog in which she shares reviews of Midnight Burning, news about Midnight Burning and the next book in the series, book trailers and soundtracks, her bio, and contact information.

You can also stop by and like Karissa's Facebook page; she posts news about her current projects, some really interesting memes, and links to a few awesome recipes for readers to try.

If you are curious to see what Karissa is reading, visit her Goodreads page where she shares what she is reading and answers some questions from readers.

Finally, if you would like to know what Solina is cooking in her family's bakery, you can find out on Karissa's Pinterest page; she shares a ton of neat recipes and artwork that you really must see for yourself!

Happy reading!