In The Viking Sagas Who Are The Valkyries?

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Traditionally, Valkyries are usually recognised as mythical female creatures that descend on the battlefield and chose the best warriors to return with them to Valhalla. Here they would sup with Odin and spend their time preparing for battle and feasting in the great hall. At the end of time when an event called Ragnarok is meant to occur, these mighty warriors will be summoned in a battle between the gods that will result in the near eradication of life on earth–the gods included.

In this myth, the Valkyries only take the most fearsome and skilled warriors. Therefore, to die in battle was considered a great honour to a Viking as it meant their position in Valhalla and the Ragnarok event was confirmed. Usually, the Valkyries only chose half of the fallen to reside with Odin in Valhalla, the other half went to the goddess Freya. Alternative variants on her name include Freyja and Freja. She also goes by the alternative names: Gefn, Hörn, Mardöll, Sýr, Valfreyja, and Vanadís.

Freya is, essentially, a fertility goddess but she is also considered the ruler of the heavenly afterlife field called Folkvangr. This is where women who were considered to have suffered a noble death go after they die, sent on the behest of the Valkyries.

The Unnamed Warrior, Valkyrie Secrets Book 1, by Rachel Tsoumbakos, FINAL

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While we may have heard of the Valkyries, it appears that a great many of the stories and sagas involving them have been lost. Even with the suspected loss of written sources about the Valkyries, there are many mentions of these mythical women throughout the sagas. In addition, there are references to Valkyries or women being cited as such in tales including Grímnismál, Nafnaþulur, Völundarkviða, Völuspá, and Skáldskaparmál, to name just a few. They can also be easily found in the Poetic Edda; the Prose Edda, and Heimskringla.

Along with the Valkyries being associated with Valhalla and the selection of warriors for Ragnarok, there appears to be some overlapping between these mythical women and other supernatural groups in Norse mythology. In particular, there has been some scholarly discussion that associates the Valkyries with the Norns, and the disir.

The Norns are female creatures who are tasked with deciding the destiny of men. The disir are also associated with the fates. This has led to the possible confusion between the Valkyries and these other groups in Norse mythology.

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Then, there is also the possibility, as Henry Adams Bellows suggests at points in his translation of the Poetic Edda, that some of these stories associated with the Valkyries might actually just be about ordinary women. Some words within the Poetic Edda have been translated as “Valkyrie.” However, the surrounding words and stanzas do little to suggest that the woman involved is a mythical creature.

While the Valkyries were usually considered creatures above and beyond the realm of humans, there are still stories of them descending for a time to be with the mortal race. This is where a lot of the romantic mythology has captured the imagination of readers. Often, they chose men considered to be great heroes or warriors. In fact, for those who have read the book in my previous series, Vikings: The Truth about Lagertha and Ragnar, you will know that the mighty shieldmaiden Lagertha was suspected to be one of these Valkyries, falling in love with Ragnar and descending for a time to be with him.

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The Valkyries Are Coming … Prepare For War!

The Unnamed Warrior, Valkyrie Secrets Book 1, by Rachel Tsoumbakos, NEW FINAL 2

I know it’s been some time since I posted here. But, there’s a reason, I promise!

Plus, I come bearing gifts to help atone my time away 😉

Over the past few months I I have been busy working on my new book series. Valkyrie Secrets is set in the same universe as my Viking Secrets series. However, I am now following the sagas of the famous Valkyries.

These women were a fierce breed who decided who would live and die on the battlefield.

Those that were chosen were taken to Valhalla where they would train — and feast — until the Viking end time called Ragnarok. Then, these warriors would be used to battle the gods in a war that is doomed before it even starts.

While there are many mentions in the Viking sagas about the famed Valkyries, there is actually not a lot of literature that describes these women. Instead, what remains of their stories is truncated or mere snippets of information that is quite often just the mention of a name.

So, as you can imagine, piecing together their sagas can be quite challenging.

Even so, I have managed to locate some really interesting stories.

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The first three novellas in the Valkyrie Secrets series will delve into the strange intertwined tales of three Helgis and the Valkyries who loved these men.

In the first story, Svafa is introduced to a man without a name.

Not only does she give him a name, but she also presents him with a sword that will protect him on the battlefield.

For, while the Valkyries are tasked with selecting fierce warriors for the gods’ mighty army, Svafa has fallen in love with this man and wants nothing more than to see him live.

However, as is the way with Viking sagas, their love is doomed and a curse befalls Svafa’s beloved.

But, this is where it gets really interesting.

While the relationship is condemned, they are also reborn in a cycle that sees the pair recurring through the sagas as they fight time and again to maintain their love.

So, why don’t you check out Svafa’s story today!


BLURB

Valhalla: Where the Valkyries rule and women decide the fates of mortal men.

Destined to always bring about the destruction of men, the Valkyries are tasked with gathering the ultimate army against the war they are destined to never win: Ragnarok.

But could one of these fierce women find love among the horrors of war?

Svafa thinks she can. However, thanks to the fates, she is destined to be reborn and her love must stand up against the rigours of time.

Could their love change the fated destiny of them all?

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As well as being busy writing, I also have an epic giveaway on offer.

The massive historical fiction giveaway has 15 paperback copies of some awesome historical romances on offer.

YOU CAN JOIN THE GIVEAWAY HERE.

However, you need to hurry as the giveaway closes on February 15!

Giveaway 15 historical fiction paperbacks with covers

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‘Vikings: The Truth About Thora And Ragnar’ is Live! Grab Your Discounted Copy Now #Vikings

Today is the day that you can finally start reading your copy of Vikings: The Truth about Thora and Ragnar if you pre-ordered early. And, if you haven’t already secured your copy, you have only a few short days left in which you can pick it up for only $2.99. After November 3, book #5 in the Viking Secrets series will revert to its recommended retail price of $4.99.

All the details are below!

Vikings The Truth about Thora and Ragnar by Rachel Tsoumbakos FINAL

VIKINGS: THE TRUTH ABOUT THORA AND RAGNAR
(Viking Secrets series Book #5)
Release date: November 1, 2018
Genre/s: Historical fiction, Historical Romance, Vikings, Nonfiction
BUY NOW: Amazon
Kindle Price: $2.99 ($4.99 after November 3)

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Thora Fortress-Hart: The forgotten wife of Ragnar Lodbrok.

As soon as Ragnar saw her, he knew he had to have her.

Even though he had to fight a venomous lindworm to win her hand.

Did she love him back though?

Delve into their story and find out today!

Part One brings the whole story to life with a historically accurate novel. Part Two then examines the historical facts behind this Viking story.

The ‘Viking Secrets’ series explores the historical fact from present-day fiction in regards to the Vikings and the extraordinary women who existed in the Viking era.

PLEASE NOTE: Each of the books in this series can be read as standalone books due to the nature of the sagas involved. Therefore, the book numbering indicates the order in which the stories were published and not the order in which they are required to be read.

Add now to your GoodReads reading list.

Valkyrie Secrets book series, Rachel Tsoumbakos, Myrddin Spice

[Image via voltamax/Pixabay]

In addition, if you are wondering about my new series, Valkyrie Secrets, I am nearing completion on book #1 and will be spending November participating on National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) writing a lot more in this series. So, if all goes according to plan, these books will be ready for release at some point in 2019.

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‘Vikings: The Truth About Thora And Ragnar’ Is Now Available For Pre-Order

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I know it has been a bit of a wait, but Vikings: Truth about Thora and Ragnar is now available for pre-order! Book #5 in the Viking Secrets series, Thora and Ragnar’s saga delves into the amazing story of how they met (SPOILER ALERT: There’s a serpent involved) and their enduring love story.

You can pre-order Vikings: The Truth about Thora and Ragnar here.

However, you need to secure your pre-order prior to the release date of November 1 if you want to bag this book at the promotional price of only $2.99. Once Thora’s tale is officially launched, it will rise to its recommended retail price of $4.99 on November 3.

All the details are below.

Vikings The Truth about Thora and Ragnar by Rachel Tsoumbakos FINAL

VIKINGS: THE TRUTH ABOUT THORA AND RAGNAR
(Viking Secrets series Book #5)
Release date: November 1, 2018
Genre/s: Historical fiction, Historical Romance, Vikings, Nonfiction
Available: Amazon
Kindle Price: $2.99

BLURB

Thora Fortress-Hart: The forgotten wife of Ragnar Lodbrok.

As soon as Ragnar saw her, he knew he had to have her.

Even though he had to fight a venomous lindworm to win her hand.

Did she love him back though?

Delve into their story and find out today!

Part One brings the whole story to life with a historically accurate novel. Part Two then examines the historical facts behind this Viking story.

The ‘Viking Secrets’ series explores the historical fact from present-day fiction in regards to the Vikings and the extraordinary women who existed in the Viking era.

PLEASE NOTE: Each of the books in this series can be read as standalone books due to the nature of the sagas involved. Therefore, the book numbering indicates the order in which the stories were published and not the order in which they are required to be read.

Add now to your GoodReads reading list.

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Get Ready For The ‘Valkyrie Secrets’ Series!

Valkyrie Secrets book series, Rachel Tsoumbakos, Myrddin Spice

[Image via voltamax/Pixabay]

While I am still in the midst of writing Book #5 in the ‘Viking Secrets’ series, I have a very special announcement to make!

In addition to Thora’s story, I am currently in the development stages for an offshoot of this series called the ‘Valkyrie Secrets’ series. While researching the women to be featured in my ‘Viking Secrets’ series, I came across many of the stories that revolved around the famous Valkyries. Each of these women is fierce warriors, but, being only one step removed from humankind, they have a tendency to fall in love with those men on the battlefield that they should be selecting for Valhalla.

While I wanted to dedicate a full book to each of these wonderful characters, there wasn’t actually a lot in the source material in relation to each woman. So, instead of abandoning their stories completely, I have decided to create an offshoot series that will delve into the lives of their amazing women and the men they loved. Each book in the ‘Valkyrie Secrets’ series will be a standalone novella that you can devour in one sitting — if you are so inclined 😉

Already, I have the first four books in this series mapped out and will begin writing as soon as the first draft for Vikings: The Truth about Thora and Ragnar is complete. So, make sure you check out my newsletter next month when I will reveal the titles of the first four books in this exciting new series!

You can sign up for my newsletter here.

Also, if you sign up before my next newsletter comes out on July 8, you will be able to read more about the Viking Valkyries 😉

While you are waiting for this new series, make sure you check out my ‘Viking Secrets’ series on Amazon.

Viking Secrets series, Rachel Tsoumbakos

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