A large portion of this book is spent tracing down Norse mythology and looking for an earthly entrance to Valhalla. I think this part was both a strength and a weakness of the book (and of the series overall). I liked the tie-ins and the modern takes on some of the mythology, but it seemed at times like it was a bit forced.
I really liked the direction that the series went with this book. With the arrival of Astley and another set of pixies, Zara and her friends and family are forced to confront their prejudices towards pixies. They’re also forced – particularly in Zara’s instance – to confront the choices they made when they imprisoned her father and his pixies in the house.
I totally fell in love with Zara right from the first page. She’s a little neurotic, always repeating the words for phobias to herself, and a lot depressed over the death of her stepfather. All that did was endear me to her.