Book Review: The Tricking of Freya by Christina Sunley

The Tricking of Freya is a story told by the adult Freya Morris to a cousin she is searching for, about her childhood and her crazy Icelandic family. Perhaps crazy is a strong word, but in the actions of her paperback_trickingmother and aunt it is obvious that things were not “right” in this family. For that reason, this book will appeal to a wider-than-Icelandic-fanatics audience – this story could be about anyone’s family. Freya’s family just happen to be of Icelandic descent and now living in the US and Canada.

There is a sense of mystery throughout the book, and all the loose ends are wrapped up by the end – perhaps a little too quickly after all the drama of the story. Freya visits Iceland in the book both as a child and an adult, but does not have happy times there. The author herself clearly has a strong knowledge of the Icelandic language and includes many little facts about the sagas, the language and all things Icelandic. A casual reader with no knowledge of Iceland could pick up quite a lot from this, or perhaps get irritated by it!

For a debut novel I thought this was a very good one. It’s funny and sad, and I enjoyed the author interview at the end where you find out where much of the inspiration for the story came from.

This book is published in the US, but I was able to get it through Amazon. The author’s website includes a blog about a trip she took to Iceland before the book and includes some photos that are interesting if you’ve read the book. I hope she continues to write Iceland-related fiction.

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8 thoughts on “Book Review: The Tricking of Freya by Christina Sunley

  1. Beautifully written novel about family secrets, mental illness (Birdie’s getting talky!) and of course, Iceland. Thank you so much for the recommendation, really enjoyed it.

  2. I came across this book in a charity shop and, because I have long wanted an Icelandic penfriend, I thought this would be as close as I could get. What a wonderful book! I loved every moment of it, interspersed with Icelandic words (and their meanings) made for a world I could never inhabit. The story kept my total interest until the very last page (although I surmised the ending) and I was not disappointed. One day I will visit Iceland and enjoy the country as much as Freya and Christina did. Well done.

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