Title: Death and Beauty
Author: Samantha MacLeod
Publisher: Vestal Valley Press
Publication Date: 20 June 2017
Format: eBook - EPUB
Source: Review Copy from Author
Baldr the Beautiful is dead.
to get back to his privileged role as Óðinn’s favorite son, Baldr
strikes a bargain with Hel, the terrifying half living and half skeletal
queen of the realm of the dead. He offers her the only thing he’s got:
knowledge from the living world. Hel gives him three days. If he can
teach her something new, she will return him to the realms of the
But the icy Hel seems completely impervious to Baldr’s
charms. What’s worse, she already knows everything. By the end of the
third day, Baldr realizes he’s only got one chance left to impress her.
to his former life looks like it’s going to depend on Baldr the
Beautiful seducing the most formidable woman in the Nine Realms. (Goodreads Synopsis)
Death and Beauty is a delightful read for anyone who enjoys Norse mythology and also likes some sexy storytelling. I appreciated MacLeod's take on the myth, which worked well, and her Baldr and Hel both came across as complex and interesting characters. There's plenty of action, both in the formal sense and in the fictional bedroom, and this novella was therefore quite a page-turner. Due to the content, this is an adult tale, but if that's your thing, you should definitely check this out. I only wish it could have been longer.