Echoes of the Runes

Written by Christina Courtenay
Review by Lisa Redmond

Christina Courtenay is an award-winning writer of historical romance, and Echoes of the Runes is her first book with Headline. Historian Mia Maddox has just inherited her grandmother’s summer cottage in the Swedish countryside. Mia has spent every summer of her childhood there and finds it hard to let go, especially when there is to be an archaeological dig on her land. She is a curator at the British Museum and insists on being involved in the dig, bringing her into conflict with archaeologist Haakon Berger. However, they both become drawn to the history of the site and find their dreams invaded by the story of Ceri, a Welsh noblewoman, and a Viking warrior, Haukr.

Courtenay’s writing brings the past vividly to life, using dual-period narrative to brilliant effect. The two love stories are compelling, well-paced and filled with drama. The detail of everyday life in medieval Wales and Sweden is excellent but never overpowers the storytelling, and the characters in both eras are extremely well drawn. The intrigue, secrets, treachery and action will appeal to fans of historical mystery and adventure who would not normally read romance, and I look forward to reading more from this author.