Author: L.A. Ashton
Published: December 2018
Publisher: NineStar Press
Genre: Romance, LGBTQIA+
I received a copy of Valhalla from Netgalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Sakuma has served as a Valkyrie for centuries, smoothly escorting thousands of souls to the grand halls of Valhalla. While the world tears itself apart during WWII, he is summoned to retrieve the soul of a fallen Japanese soldier, Ishii Hiroshi. To Sakuma’s surprise, Ishii refuses his invitation to eternity.
The two meet again and again as the war repeatedly sends Ishii to death’s door, and what should have been a fleeting encounter becomes something much greater for the both of them.
Sakuma is determined to give Ishii the reward he so deserves, but Ishii’s stubbornness may condemn him to an eternity outside Valhalla.
Valhalla is a short novella about Sakuma, a former samurai who’s served as a Valkyrie for centuries, his job to escort the souls of soldiers to the halls of Valhalla where they can rest after their service. During World War II he’s tasked with retrieving the soul of a Japanese soldier, Ishii, although the soldier has other plans, refusing to relinquish his hold on life, leaving Sakuma’s job unfinished. The two meet time and time again, but Ishii’s stubborn refusal to give in to death and life in the eternal hall may have consequences for them both.
This was short and sweet and very beautifully told. It has an ethereal feel to it, which is appropriate given that Sakuma is a winged Valkyrie. But it is very clear that author, Ashton, has a love for both of these characters and the slowly developing friendship and love the progresses over time.
I loved how both characters perceive time in different ways; it adds to the complication of these connection, and also the frustration of Sakuma who’s been stopped from doing his job.
I’m very glad that I read this, and it’s well worth a read if you like World War II stories with some paranormal/romance aspects.