Cover image for Daughter of the wind
Daughter of the wind
Cadnum, Michael.
Personal Author:
First Scholastic edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Orchard Books [2003]

Physical Description:
266 pages ; 22 cm
In medieval times as various groups of Vikings fight for supremacy of the northern lands and waters, Hallgerd, Gauk, and Hego, three young people from the quiet coastal village of Spjothof, find their fates intertwined as a series of events take them into danger far from home.
Reading Level:
1020 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 7.2 9.0 70046.

Reading Counts RC High School 7.5 13 Quiz: 33703 Guided reading level: NR.
Format :


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Historical adventure story that takes place in medieval Scandinavia.

Hallgerd is the 17 year-old daughter of the Norwegian village leader. A group of Danes, acting under the orders of a powerful, warring-king's daughter, kidnap her and intend to marry her to this noblewoman's son. After a sympathetic young Dane helps her to escape, Hallegerd avenges her kidnapping by setting fire to the town and steals a small rowboat. As she is rowing through the marsh, she meets Gauk, a young hunter, along with a young blacksmith from Hallegerd's village who has come to rescue her.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 7-10. In a gripping opening scene, young Norseman Gauk slays a bear that has just killed his best friend. Back in his village, a group of Danes abducts the leader's daughter, Hallgerd, removing her to become the bride of their own leader's son. These two stories and that of the loyal but slow-thinking Hego intertwine until Gauk and Hego meet Hallgerd as she flees her fate. A companion volume to Raven of the Waves (2001), this teems with Norse culture and edge-of-the-seat adventure. It was a violent time and Cadnum portrays it realistically, inserting ample background information. The ending leaves a few questions that may be answered in a third volume. Packed with as much combat as any action movie, this swashbuckling novel can also supplement social studies units on Vikings and medieval life. --Linda Perkins Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

Although readers will enjoy the sensation of being swept to another time and place in this thrill-a-minute historical drama, they may have trouble staying on course as Cadnum (In a Dark Wood; The Book of the Lion) leads them through ancient Nordic coastal villages. Clunkily weaving together two stories-that of Hallgerd, a rich jarl's daughter kidnapped by Danes, and that of fellow villager and bear hunter, Gauk-the author introduces an onslaught of minor characters and events. It is clear that the paths of the young heroine and hero are destined to cross, but the plot's continually shifting focus grows burdensome. Adventure buffs may be enthralled by some action-packed scenes (e.g., Gauk kills his first bear; Hallgerd makes a daring escape from her captors). However, the plot seems to advance from one scene of bloodshed to the next, and these become almost run-of-the mill. While it sheds light on Nordic customs, rituals, beliefs and the value placed on heroism and loyalty, the narrative lacks the humor and multidimensional characterizations that the author's fans have come to expect. Ages 12-up. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 8 Up-An exciting tale of three young people striving to discover who they are and what the future holds for them, set in the rough, brutal world of the Vikings. Hallgerd dreams of marrying Lismod, the protagonist in Cadnum's Raven of the Waves (Orchard, 2001). This beautiful young woman, whose father is the jarl of their Norwegian village, is captured in a raid by Danes intent on bringing her back to their village as a bride prize for the grandson of their leader. Gauk feels the spirit of a bear enter him after he slays the beast who has killed his friend. As he skins the animal and throws its mighty pelt over his shoulders, he realizes that Odin has accepted him as a berserker, a warrior feared by everyone. Finally there is Hego, whose ways are slow and deliberate. When he sees Hallgerd captured, he follows the Danes as they carry her off and attempts unsuccessfully to rescue her. The stories of these three characters come together in the book's dramatic climax. Though Hallgerd's escape from the Danes happens coincidentally at exactly the moment that Gauk and Hego arrive to rescue her, the story is still gripping, and full of graphic scenes of violence, which may be unpleasant reading for some. Yet it is Cadnum's glimpses of everyday life and the stirring sagas that bring the inner world of these Northern people to life. A welcome addition to the growing list of historical fiction about the early Vikings.-Barbara Scotto, Michael Driscoll School, Brookline, MA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.