The Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan

The Ship of the Dead

Magnus Chase, a once-homeless teen, is a resident of the Hotel Valhalla and one of Odin's chosen warriors. As the son of Frey, the god of summer, fertility, and health, Magnus isn't naturally inclined to fighting. But he has strong and steadfast friends, including Hearthstone the elf, Blitzen the dwarf, and Samirah the Valkyrie, and together they have achieved brave deeds,...

Title:The Ship of the Dead
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Edition Language:English

The Ship of the Dead Reviews

  • Amber Robertson

    R A M B L E

    First up, it feels so good to be writing a review. I haven’t finished a book in a while (about a week, actually) so writing this makes me so happy. Life just sucks at the moment, makes it difficult to make time for a book when you’re packing all your stuff and trying to find a house. But, hey, what can you do?

    Okay, now fully into the ramble;

    Some books you truly want to be longer than a trilogy. The story of Magnus Chase is one of them for me.

    R A M B L E

    First up, it feels so good to be writing a review. I haven’t finished a book in a while (about a week, actually) so writing this makes me so happy. Life just sucks at the moment, makes it difficult to make time for a book when you’re packing all your stuff and trying to find a house. But, hey, what can you do?

    Okay, now fully into the ramble;

    Some books you truly want to be longer than a trilogy. The story of Magnus Chase is one of them for me. I know absolutely nothing about Norse mythology. Greek, Egyptian and Roman mythology I all knew about so reading Riordan’s other series were made easy by previous knowledge. Norse mythology was a big wide world of nothing for me. The only thing I really knew was Chris Hemsworth played Thor (my mum loves Chris Hemsworth). This series took me a while to get into and to learn the particular gods of this world, but once I was into it I was so completely in love with the characters.

    Riordan manages to weave challenges into a story that don’t become tiresome and add to the characters overall journey. He creates fresh characters in every series and their backstories will have you in tears. We don’t even get to learn everything throughout this book, simply get glimpses of the other characters while Magnus Chase attempts to stop Ragnarok.

    We have such a diverse cast of characters particularly throughout this series that it is the perfect middle-grade novel. Almost everyone can find themselves in this book or pieces of themselves which I think is perfect for children who are going through particular things that aren’t the ‘norm’. I can’t speak for any of the rep though, but I believe it is well done from what I’ve read (will hunt for own voices reviews).

    I really think Riordan’s series is important for the amazing plot and the characters throughout. I may be 20 in a couple months but I can’t stop myself from picking up these books and being completely engaged.

    P L O T

    The thing about Riordan’s books is that you can’t say much about the plot without spoiling a whole lot. This book details Magnus and our well-known friends going on a journey to defeat Loki. Of course, nothing goes right and there are several side adventures that keep humour up and myself engaged as a reader.

    This was the perfect book for me to read at the current time. My family is going through some struggles right now and I am getting my wisdom teeth ripped out on Thursday, so I just need to keep myself distracted (but not too distracted, if that makes sense?).

    Riordan is one of the best writers for the plot, though. I need the plot to keep me engaged and entertained and never over the five years I’ve been reading his books has he let me down. I just love all the additions to the overall story and the even larger addition of humour. These books will get you smiling and giggling.

    Also, the romance in this book is one of my favourite romances in every book I’ve ever read. It was cute, sweet and completely relatable. It happens so organically and isn’t forced. The trauma between characters is never disregarded either, which I loved.

    C H A R A C T E R S

    #M A G N U S C H A S E

    I love Magnus Chase with all my heart. He is a character that isn’t the ‘chosen one’ or the son of the most well-known and best god of that particular mythology. He’s a bit of a weenie actually. He makes me laugh so hard and constantly keeps me on my toes with his snarky remarks or embarrassing moments.

    He truly grows in this book. He comes into his own and discovers more about himself and the other around him. I wish we got more of his grief, though. He has lost so much for such a young child and I would honestly be a wreck if it was me. I am blown away.

    The way he is such a caring individual as well. I mean, he is the son of a god who heals people, so it makes sense. I don’t know what to say, really. I just adore Magnus Chase. He is a sweetheart and I just want to hug him.

    #O T H E R S

    I’ve added in this others bit purely because there are so many other characters in this book. We have Alex, Sam, Blitzen, Hearthstone, Mallory, T.J., Gunderson and Jack. They are all incredibly important throughout this particular story. Making their mark and giving us a bit more information on characters that have felt neglected in the past two books.

    I particularly liked seeing Sam do Ramadam, it was interesting to have that different spiritual connection throughout the book that focuses on a mythology. Alex becomes a full-fledged character for me, as we learnt about his/her background. It was truly heartbreaking. The same goes as we learn about Mallory, T.J and Gunderson, how they all ended up in Valhalla.

    I’m not sure what to say, apart from the fact I may love the side characters more than I love Magnus Chase. Wild, right?

    O V E R A L L

    Overall, a phenomonal conclusion. It has left me desperately and anxiously wanting more. I can’t wait for Magnus to pop up in other books Riordan does. My only complaint would be, not enough Percy Jackson. I was really hoping the Greek and Norse worlds would have come together in this novel, but oh well, what can I do now? Anxiously await for Riordan’s next release and re-read every book he’s written.

  • Giska Anandita

    We can finally see Percy xD

    But we have to wait for another year:(

  • Cassandra

    Post-read review:

    I'm satisfied. However, I guess this means that I have officially sold my soul to Uncle Rick.

    Full review to come.

    Pre-read review:

    Guys, I have high hopes for this novel. But to be honest, I have one and only one demand...

    #blitzstone

  • Simona Bartolotta

    . And was that a hint at a possible continuation you threw in there, Rick? WAS IT

  • georgia ☽

    HELL YEAH i loved it obviously

    these characters are

    and i love them all!

  • P

    We have the cover !

    Since this is the last book of Magnus Chase, I have high hopes for the book.

    More Loki, please.

  • Romie

    Am I okay? Or am I dying because of the feels? Am I reborn in Valhalla?

    Those are all great questions.

    I didn’t read this book, I inhaled it. Seriously. This book was read in less than a day, that’s simply how good it was. I couldn’t put it down, I NEEDED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED NEXT.

    I loved every single character in this book, and I think what I liked the most was knowing all the stories behind Mallory, T.J. and Gunderson, it was just so meaningful. Those three aren’t really present until this book

    Am I okay? Or am I dying because of the feels? Am I reborn in Valhalla?

    Those are all great questions.

    I didn’t read this book, I inhaled it. Seriously. This book was read in less than a day, that’s simply how good it was. I couldn’t put it down, I NEEDED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED NEXT.

    I loved every single character in this book, and I think what I liked the most was knowing all the stories behind Mallory, T.J. and Gunderson, it was just so meaningful. Those three aren’t really present until this book, but you learn to love them in just the little time you get to have them.

    I’m so happy this book took place during Ramadan because it is so important to have representation, it matters. Seeing Samirah fasting, doing her prayers, breaking her fast with dates, focusing on her emotions, it was simply amazing.

    My small son Maggie, my Mango, my Magnus, I’m so proud of him, this little shit nearly made me cry several times but I love him and of course he’s forgiven. I think it’s the book you get to really see who Magnus actually is : a healer. That’s truly the essence of his being. Magnus is best at healing people, making them feel whole again, important and loved. But being a healer sometimes means you forget about yourself, how amazing and valuable you are . . . you forgot about the greatness there is within you, that’s also Magnus. Magnus who fell in love with the most amazing person ever, I’ve named Alex Fierro.

    Alex Fierro is a force of nature, that’s truly the best way you can describe her. She’s little but fierce, ready to cut your head off — yeah that’s not a joke, she’ll do it. She’s probably one of the most interesting characters I’ve ever read about, the complexity behind her character is phenomenal. She’s transgender, gender-fluid, our favourite latinx queen, and ready to kick your butt if you dare calling her by the wrong pronouns — especially when she takes the time to tell you which one to use, you punk.

    Uncle Rick is truly a good ally. That is something you cannot take away from him. He’s respectful of all the different cultures there are out there, and seriously I could cry just because of that. We do not deserve Rick Riordan. We do not. Rick Riordan decided to write diverse characters because that’s the way the world is, and he doesn’t ask to be praised for that. He’s just doing his job has an extremely talented author.

    Thank you Uncle Rick, you’re so loved.

  • Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽

    3.5 stars. Final review, first posted on

    :

    When

    ― a ship made out of the fingernails and toenails of the dead, eek! ― sets sail, carrying hordes of giants and zombies warriors to fight the gods of Asgard, Ragnarok and a world-ending battle aren’t far behind. Ragnarok can’t be entirely avoided, unfortunately (it’s an inevitable prophecy), but perhaps it can be delayed for a while longer?

    As the third and final book in Rick Riordan‘s MAGNUS CHASE AND THE GODS OF ASGARD se

    3.5 stars. Final review, first posted on

    :

    When

    ― a ship made out of the fingernails and toenails of the dead, eek! ― sets sail, carrying hordes of giants and zombies warriors to fight the gods of Asgard, Ragnarok and a world-ending battle aren’t far behind. Ragnarok can’t be entirely avoided, unfortunately (it’s an inevitable prophecy), but perhaps it can be delayed for a while longer?

    As the third and final book in Rick Riordan‘s MAGNUS CHASE AND THE GODS OF ASGARD series begins, Loki has escaped from his imprisonment by the gods and is getting the dreaded ship

    ready to sail against the gods, triggering Ragnarok. Right now the ship is docked between Niflheim (the world of ice and fog) and Jotunheim (the home of the giants), prepared to set sail as soon as Midsummer causes the ice on the sea to melt enough. Loki

    global warming, by the way.

    Clearly Magnus Chase and his friends need to stop him somehow! But first Magnus needs to get some training in battling sea monsters from Percy Jackson, then search his dead uncle’s mansion for a mysterious clue, fight a wolf for its possession, set sail with his einherjar friends on a banana-yellow Viking warship through perilous seas to find and stop Loki, avoid being eaten by the sea giant Aegir and his nine bloodthirsty daughters, take a break to go to Alfheim (home of the elves) to fight a malicious dragon and try to get the magical whetstone of Bolverk from his hoard, then …

    You know what? It’s just another quest for a Riordan demigod hero, and the fun is in going along for the ride. As is typical for Riordan’s YA books, the journey is rather charmingly complex and random, a literary Rube Goldberg chain reaction machine, where one event triggers another, which in turn trips off another, and so on.

    But it’s an enjoyable ride, even if the trip is convoluted and you don’t really remember the specifics of most of these episodic adventures after you’re done reading the book. And sometimes seemingly significant events like, say, developing the ability to understand the speech of animals, are raised and then dropped with little or no explanation or resolution. But Magnus Chase cracks lots of jokes along the way, some of which are actually quite amusing. The chapter titles are always witty; my favorites this time around were “I Inherit a Dead Wolf and Some Underwear,” followed by “But Wait. Act Now, and You Get a

    Wolf Free!”

    The cast of

    is diversity personified, including once-homeless Magnus; Alex, who frequently shifts back and forth between identifying as male and female; devout Muslim Samirah, who fasts for the month of Ramadan notwithstanding all their troubles and conflicts; former black slave and Civil War soldier Thomas Jefferson (T.J.) Jr.; and more. With all this diversity, there’s a refreshing emphasis on friendship and loyalty. It culminates in the book’s climactic scene, with an unexpected twist befitting this entire series’ theme of unity in diversity.

    Riordan finds creative ways to weave in many actual legends and characters from Norse mythology. I was particularly impressed when I did a little online sleuthing regarding Bolverk, and found that

    concerning Bolverk, a whetstone, a battle with slaves and the mead of poetry had been neatly woven into the text of

    . That Naglfar ship though. *shudders*

    wraps up Magnus Chase’s initial story arc, though I’d expect that some of these characters will make an appearance again in later Riordan books. Near the end there’s a teaser involving Percy Jackson and his girlfriend Annabeth, presumably pointing to the next book set in Riordan’s multi-mythological world.

    Content note: Parents of younger readers may want to be aware that the gender-fluid Alex, introduced in the second book,

    , becomes romantically involved with another character in this book (trying to avoid too many spoilers here). Kisses only. Regardless of your stance on this hot topic, it's a good one to discuss with your kids.

  • Hannah

    The good thing about Rick Riordan's books is that you always know what you get. They are light-hearted, funny, fast-paced, and just lovely to read. Having said that - I think he might be running out of steam here.

    I will not even try to give a synopsis because, like all the books in the Percy Jackson universe before this, it's basically: group of demi-gods (or Einherjar) get send on a quest, they go from place A to place B - get attacked/meet a monster/get challenged - escape, go to place C - get

    The good thing about Rick Riordan's books is that you always know what you get. They are light-hearted, funny, fast-paced, and just lovely to read. Having said that - I think he might be running out of steam here.

    I will not even try to give a synopsis because, like all the books in the Percy Jackson universe before this, it's basically: group of demi-gods (or Einherjar) get send on a quest, they go from place A to place B - get attacked/meet a monster/get challenged - escape, go to place C - get attacked/meet a monster/ get challenged - escape, go to place D - get attacked/ meet a monster/ get challenged - and so on and so forth. The recipe works; the books are all insanely readable and fun but, especially the later ones get a little bit stale. Not enough that I stop reading them, mind, but enough to make me hope that Rick Riordan will actually manage to wrap them up sooner rather than later so that they can end on a high.

    What I love about these books is how obviously aware of his readers Rick Riordan is - and he tries to write characters that many people can relate to. I find that especially important in Middle Grade books. He seems to have such a lovely, positive world view and his books reflect that. They always emphasize friendship and being there for each other and being a good person. I like that.

    I think one of the reasons this book did not quite work for me is the fact how very dark the underlying mythology is: don't get me wrong, the Greek pantheon is filled with dark and twisted tales but also with goodness and hope, Norse mythology? Not so much. It is filled with the knowledge that the end of the world - Ragnarok - is inevitable. And this grimness does not quite mesh with the light-hearted voice of the series.

    But still, I enjoyed reading this book and spending more time in this world that feels familiar, it is comforting to know exactly what to expect and I needed that.

    First sentence: "'Try it again,' Percy told me. 'This tme with less dying.'"

  • Jessica

    Like all the books in this series, I really liked this. I think the best part of the series are the characters. I loved how his friends from the 19th floor had a bigger role in this book and had more character development. All of his friends are just so precious. I love them and want to protect each and every one of them.

    Overall, this was a fantastic installment in the Magnus Chase series.

    P.S. Alex is still my fav <3


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