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God's Daughter

(Vikings of the New World Saga #1)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  522 ratings  ·  162 reviews
One Viking woman. One God. One legendary journey to the New World.

In the tenth century, when pagan holy women rule the Viking lands, Gudrid turns her back on her training as a seeress to embrace Christianity. Clinging to her faith, she joins her husband, Finn, on a voyage to North America.

But even as Gudrid faces down murderous crewmen, raging sickness, and hostile natives
Kindle Edition, 255 pages
Published October 29th 2013 by WoodHaven Press
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Heather Gilbert No, absolutely not! But once you read it, you might find yourself interested in the sagas I based these books on. I based this series on two particula…moreNo, absolutely not! But once you read it, you might find yourself interested in the sagas I based these books on. I based this series on two particular stories in the sagas--The Saga of the Greenlanders and Eirik the Red's Saga. You might be able to read only those two online without buying the entire book. (less)
Heather Gilbert Yes, the book is clean, although married scenarios include feelings of lust in marriage, etc., because the heroine is married.

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Jan 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of serious historical fiction
Most readers with any knowledge of early American history are aware that Viking sailors, faring south-westward from Greenland, discovered mainland North America (actually, Greenland itself is geographically and culturally-historically considered part of North America, while Iceland is considered the westernmost part of Europe), around the year 1000 A.D. No lasting settlements were made, but archaeologists have excavated the temporary settlement at L'Anse aux Meadows in present-day Newfoundland ( ...more
Joanne Bischof
Sep 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. Heather Day Gilbert has a compelling voice and weaves a story that had me sitting back and thinking… “What a brave author.” She dives deep and thick into the human spirit, exposing both weakness and sin while also bringing hope as these characters craved an understanding of the Lord. I rejoiced over their triumphs and grieved in their heartaches and loss. This novel is powerful, poetic and at times, gritty. It’s a look at humanity—in all its forms—and celebrates wha ...more
Heather Gilbert
Aug 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I wish they had a "wrote" shelf! Ha. Of course I need to say I read my own book, and of course I would want to give it five stars. I hope Viking culture comes alive as people read about Gudrid's life.
9/6/16 Audio book review
The audio book is excellent! I really enjoyed this listen to gear up for Forest Child's upcoming release. The narrator does such a good job with the different tones and inflections of the characters. She doesn't try for any outlandish sounding accents, but I will say her Scottish accent is excellent and sounded just like I thought that character should sound. If you're interested in Viking's and what life was like for Viking women, I can't recommend God's Daughter enough.
Gwendolyn Gage
Aug 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What’s a girl to do when she’s married to a good man, but has feelings for another? Enter the world of the Vikings, and meet Gudrid. A beautiful woman related by marriage to Eirik the Red, she was a real person, and a Viking Christian. History books tell us Virginia Dare was the first child born in the New World, and maybe she was the first English child, but Gudrid’s son, Snorri, came before her.

I slipped into Gudrid’s skin as I read, such was the author’s skill with deep POV and first person,
Jocelyn Green
Jan 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Heather Day Gilbert just became one of my favorite authors. God's Daughter is everything I'm looking for in a novel: fascinating history, vivid setting, complex characters who evolve and grow as the pages turn, skillful storytelling, realistic dialogue, and relevance for today. In fact, I was surprised at how this Viking tale brimmed with lessons for today's readers. I absolutely loved the heroine and found her faith in Jesus so inspiring as she lived in a pagan culture which worshiped Thor. I d ...more
Michelle Griep
Oct 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A lot of people love history, but not many are patient enough to slog through a thousand-year-old Icelandic saga. Guess what…you don’t have to anymore! Author Heather Day Gilbert did the homework for you and wrote a hard-hitting action-packed adventure in her debut novel, GOD’S DAUGHTER.

I admit I am somewhat of a Viking history snob, but this girl did her work. There’s not one horned helmet or sight of a shield on the side of a ship amid high sea. This is the kind of accurate historical read tha
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Every now and then I like to read something different. And this was different.

Timeframe: 1000AD
Location: Straumfjord (Present day Newfoundland)
Gudrid, daughter-in-law of Eirik the Red, sister-in-law to Leif Eiriksson (spellings in the book are this way which was in keeping with Viking spellings). She had two husbands before her current husband, the second one being Eirik the Red's son. Those husbands both died not long into the marriages.
Thorfinn (Finn): Gudrid's current husband. S
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Great history and writing. Had me sweating, though, as a husband. Wondered how many muscular, long-haired men have declared their love to my wife since we've been married.
Sadie VanderKodde
Aug 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
I love a well-researched novel set in a place and time I'm largely unfamiliar with. I mean, I know Leif Erickson had something to do with finding North America, but after reading this book, I want to do more research on him!

Gudrid, despite her clunky, terrible (historically accurate) name, was wonderful as the heroine and narrator of this story. Gilbert tackles issues unseen in much of Christian fiction with finesse. She had my emotions in a tangle throughout the entire story, and totally blind
Becky Fleming
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Full 5 star book! Could not put it down! This is why I love historical fiction that is written so well - you feel like you’ve been transported in a time machine and have stepped right into the story. The characters - oh my word, they feel like real people in my mind; I can see them and hear them and feel their emotions! This was my first Viking book and I am totally hooked! Now on to the sequel!
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A Viking novel based on The Sagas of the Icelanders - well deserving of 5 stars
Pasted over from an review I left:
I find it hard to believe that this is the author's first book - and not often that I give 5 stars. Considering the ease with which people can self publish through amazon and other mechanisms, the quality of way too many books has dropped to being almost not worth reading. Too many people are rating 5 stars just because they like a story (or happen to know the author!) when
It is 1000 AD, and Gudrid is one of the few women on a Viking expedition to upper North America, to rediscover Vineland and bring great wealth back to Leif Eiriksson, their chieftain. She is the wife of Thorfinn Karlsefni, the expedition leader, mother to Snorri, the unofficial leader of the small band of women on the expedition—and the unwilling object of the affections of several of the men. Gudrid stopped worshipping Thor when she was a child and the capricious god demanded her mother as a sa ...more
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
I was first attracted the the gorgeous cover of this book, and then the fact it was a Chrsitian Viking woman in Vinland. I'd always been intrigued by the Vikings and their explorations across Iceland, Greenland and North America. This well-researched tale brought some of those epic personalities to life.

The book is written in first person, and the rhythm of the writing is reminiscent of the ancient sagas upon which this story was based. Gudrid's friendship with the wild Freydis is touching and s
Kristen Kooistra
Dec 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

One of the fun things about picking up a lot of books is that by the time I get to reading one, I've forgotten the back cover. That means I'm jumping into a book completely fresh and trusting that I picked it up for a reason.

I honestly thought this was a fantasy with a viking flavor to it. Until I started reading, and I was like wow, this author is good. She REALLY has a lot of layers and details. I did some digging and hey, it's historical fiction.

I love doing some light researching a
Jan 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My Comments
Some of my blogging friends have been reading this book so I noticed it recently and fell head over heels in love with both the cover and title, I immediately put it on my TBR (to be read/gotta have) list! Then I got the chance to review it and it felt like a Christmas present had dropped into my lap, grateful doesn’t begin to explain how that felt.

Welcome to Gudrid’s world, a Viking woman with heart and skills beyond the women of her culture. The book starts off describing a pagan s
Frances Rogers
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Quite an interesting story, even though filled with strife and death. Vikings have always been a mysterious people and one I have never read about. So now my interest is aroused, and I look forward to learning more.
Sep 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed the audible reading of this book. Was about very strong Viking women.
3.5 Stars

Heather Day Gilbert very kindly sent me an advance reader’s copy of her book in exchange for a review- and I was glad to have it. Books set in the Medieval Era are by far my favourite, though the Vikings aren’t my favourite people (as a staunch supported of King Alfred who fought them in England).
God’s Daughter covered some interesting subject matter (and period) that doesn’t seem to receive much attention in Christian Fiction - the Viking settlement of North America circa the year 10
Sarah Ashwood
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
BySDCBon April 25, 2018

I've always been fascinated by Vikings, so when I ran across this book I had to read it. The cover also drew me in. Isn't it beautiful?

It's a great book. I will admit I sometimes got frustrated with Gudrid and her inability to see how awesome her husband, Finn, was, but by the end of the book she had sort of figured out he was the quiet, unassuming glue that held everything together- including her.
If you're looking for a fantastic, Viking themed historical novel, this is t
Janet Sketchley
Nov 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If all you know about Vikings are the names Eric the Red and Leif Ericsson, God's Daughter is a great way to learn more and to perhaps break some stereotypes. For example, I didn't know they had any exposure to Christianity. Or that Eric's name is properly spelled Eiric.

Many of the novel's characters are genuine historical figures, and their voyage actually happened around 1000 AD. The setting and events have been meticulously researched to allow Heather Day Gilbert to weave a story that feels t
Sandi Layne
Aug 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
My thanks to Heather Day Gilbert for letting me read an ARC of this, her debut novel. As someone who has studied the Northmen of Nordweg, I appreciated seeing a different set of the vikingr in her book.

God's Daughter is a story of Gudrid, a strong Christian woman in a time when Christianity was just making itself felt as a significant influence against the Northern Way. The present tense, first person narrative leaves us with just Gudrid's perspective to go on as we experience hardship, life, we
Jun 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Good historical fiction-romance. Excellent first novel. Authors of historical fiction, especially of obscure eras, such as the Viking settlement of Greenland and North America, have a choice: stick close to whatever source is available or invent. Gilbert chose to follow the Icelandic sagas. The result is a rich, engaging story.

Gilbert also chose to intersperse modern phraseology with traditional terms and practices. The result is less satisfying. For example, “medicinal practices” knocked me rig
Karin Kaufman
Jan 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was completely blown away by God’s Daughter. If you like historical fiction, this will become a favorite of yours. If you’re a little reluctant to read historical fiction, as I was before picking up Gilbert’s novel, don’t be. Grab this book.

Set in circa A.D. 1000, the story begins in Iceland with a cruel sacrifice to a Norse god, then moves quickly to Straumsfjord in northern North America, where Vikings have built a temporary settlement before traveling in search of Leif Eiriksson’s Vinland,
Beth Erin
Oct 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Full review on Faithfully Bookish

Gudrid’s knowledge of the Christian God is limited but she has more than enough experience with the pagan gods to know that she doesn’t want to follow them. In a culture dominated by men, Gudrid has finally chosen a husband for herself and she is committed to following him wherever he may go.

Gudrid’s character is a beautiful blend of fierce femininity and vulnerable seeker. I loved learning a bit more about the Icelandic c
Susan Snodgrass
Mar 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was an excellent historical Vikings novel. I love Vikings, anyway, but Heather Gilbert has written a very compelling novel about the first Christian Viking woman to come to the New World. It is very, very good. I recommend it.
Raechel Lenore
Oct 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was my second time reading this book since it first released. I re-read it because of course I love it, and also in preparation of "Forest Child" coming out next month!! So excited!
I love the Vikings history, and Mrs.Gilbert's writing is so good.
May 26, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
An interesting story, but I don't think I'm a fan of viking novels as I didn't really connect to the book. It was intriguing at times, but just not a favorite for me.
May 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a very fascinating story. I didn’t know much about Vikings before this. I’m looking forward to reading the next book!
Aug 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I couldn't put the book down. Days after I finished reading I kept thinking about the characters.
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HEATHER DAY GILBERT, an ECPA Christy award finalist and Grace award winner, writes contemporary mysteries and Viking historicals. Her novels feature small towns, family relationships, and women who aren't afraid to protect those they love. Publisher's Weekly gave Heather's Viking historical Forest Child a starred review, saying it is "an engaging story depicting timeless human struggles with faith ...more

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Vikings of the New World Saga (2 books)
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