Title: Spellbound (Legend of the Ice People # 1)
Author: Margit Sandemo
Publication Date: 2008 (1982)
Source: Xmas Gift
Winter 1581: a deadly plague outbreak robs sixteen-year old peasant girl Silje of all her family. Homeless, starving and shepherding two abandoned children, she stumbles out of the corpse-strewn streets of Trondheim on Norway's northern coast.
Heading desperately for the warmth of the mass funeral pyres blazing beyond the city gates, she encounters in the shadowy forest one of the infamous Ice People, a fearsome, strangely captivating 'wolf man'. He offers help - and she feels irresistibly drawn to him. But what is the terrible fascination? And where will it lead? (Book Cover Synopsis)
I think this series is going to become a guilty pleasure for me and I will have to track down the remaining 46 books (assuming all are available in English - I'll need to Google).
Let me start with the bad this time and then move onto the good. Technically, I shouldn't like this book. It is based on a very obvious storyline that does exactly what you'd expect with no sudden, interesting twists. Also, the writing relies a lot on POV switches from paragraph to paragraph. The first time it happened, I wondered if it was a translation issue, but when it kept reappearing, I figured it must have been in the original writing. While it is always clear whose head you are in, it is a distraction and an annoyance.
But despite all that, I found myself drawn into the story of Silje and the Ice People. Sure it is obvious what will happen next, but it is still strangely addictive and I finished the book wanting to know what would happen next to both Silje and Tengel. This is like another Twilight Saga for me: neither is that well written and yet you can't help being pulled into the story. Guilty pleasures indeed.
This series has some sensual scenes and elements, but they are not overtly graphic/erotica, so this book could be read by anyone 16+, I would think. I would recommend it to fantasy readers who just want a good dose of escapism and who aren't too fussed about literary merit.