Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Ransacker (Berserker, #2)” as Want to Read:
Ransacker (Berserker, #2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


(Berserker #2)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  161 ratings  ·  52 reviews
Rare powers. Precious metals. Deadly greed.

Sissel Hemstad and her siblings have been living peacefully in a small town in Montana, trying to blend-in and escape the violent events that haunt them, but they’ve all been tricked -- James Peavy, the handsome young man courting Sissel is secretly a Pinkerton spy.

The Hemstads possess supernatural powers bestowed upon their famil
Hardcover, 448 pages
Published January 29th 2019 by Feiwel & Friends
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Ransacker, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Ransacker

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.94  · 
Rating details
 ·  161 ratings  ·  52 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Ransacker (Berserker, #2)
Carole (Carole's Random Life)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I did like this book even if I didn't love it. I really enjoyed the first book in this series, Berserker, so I was pretty eager to see what the Hemstad family was up to. While I didn't enjoy this one quite as much as the previous book, I did find it to be a worthwhile read and enjoyed the story overall.

The set up for this series is really quite interesting. The book takes place in the Old West and focuses on a family with a unique se
Nicole (FearYourEx)
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
4/5 Stars

This book gave me everything I was hoping for after reading Berserker. You get to learn more about everybody else involved and a better understanding of the world, and their Nyttes. And the story starts back up not long after the end of Berserker. Now we get to learn more about Sissel and her nytte of being a Ransacker. The action starts up pretty early on!

I will say I did not connect with Sissel as well as I did Hanne, BUT I think I'm a very different person than Sissel so that's under
*Source* Publisher
*Genre* Young Adult, Historical
*Rating* 3.5


Ransacker, by author Emmy Laybourne, is the finale to the Berserker duology. This story takes place 2 years after the events of Berserker. The Hemstads (Hanne, Stieg, Knut, and Sissel) possess supernatural powers bestowed upon their family by the ancient Norse Gods. Sissel Hemstad, the youngest at 16, will finally discover her Nytte gift, She's a Ransacker. She can find gold and other precious metals and pull them to her. He
God, Emmy Laybourne has created such a great world and characters with this series.
Full review to come.
Mar 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
Sissel finds out that she has the power of a Ransacker and can sense metals.

I am happy to say that I enjoyed this book nearly as much as 'Berserker'. I'm also surprised to say that because (1) I didn't like the character of Sissel and (2) this book was advertised as having a love triangle. I'm on a YA-not-a-fan place in my life so it takes a lot for me to enjoy one currently. Emmy Laybourne manages this. Sissel and her family continue to back each other up (though they're separated for most of t
Hannah L (Reviewer)
Such an odd combo, western and viking gods, but surprisingly good.
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved the first book in the BERSERKER duology and RANSACKER certainly does not disappoint! This book is a whirlwind of an adventure filled with increasing intensity! The world-building is unreal and the evolution of these characters stunned me. I did not expect to connect with Sissel so deeply, but I'm so glad the author allowed us to get to know her better! A must-read for sure!

(Note: I received an early review copy from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.)
I'd give this one a 3.5 mostly because I missed the interaction among the Hemstad siblings, and Hanne, Stieg, and Knut were not as present as Sissel, their sixteen-year-old sister. In fact, most of the book focuses on Sissel and her newly-found gift--and it's a doozy! It was cool to see her grow from a whining, fragile, helpless, and self-absorbed child to an empowered woman who is independent and knows what she wants. But she makes so many mistakes and trusts the wrong person. Three years have ...more
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you haven’t read the first book in the Beserker series, er, Beserker, then its sequel, Ransacker won’t make a lot of sense. So, maybe you should go read Beserker. Or you could read about it in the review that I wrote a while back! It’s got Henrik Ibsen references... Go ahead, I’ll wait.

So its two years after the events of Beserker and now we're focusing on now 16 year old Sissel. Sissel is sick and tired of being treated like a little weakling, with Hanne hovering over her all the time and ev
Megan Anderson
The premise of this was fantastic: a fantasy set in the 1880s focused on a family with powers granted by the Norse gods. Sign me up!

But the reality is disappointingly lackluster. Practically every page we're told that the character the book ostensibly focuses on is weak and small and sick, but she ends up with two dudes after her hand? One of them even tells her he likes her "ambition"? To that point, I hadn't seen an ambitious bone in her actions! Willful and impulsive maybe, but nothing so se
Feb 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Ransacker is the empowering sequel to one of my favorite reads of 2018 Berserker. The horror was dialed back in Ransacker to make way for a whole different sort of story. The story of Sissel. The sister who was known for being Nyette free and weak. But the sister who would not be set back by her perceived weaknesses any longer.
What I Loved: 
Sissel's strength. This is 100% Sissel's story. She grows in this story. She finds her worth. She finds her strength. She decides for herself to ...more
Nannette Demmler
Jan 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
ARC provided by Macmillan Children’s Publishing via NetGalley for an honest review.

Wow, this one was just as good as the first. I really enjoy the setting and characters and the mix of the old west with Norse mythology. Plus a strong family that loves each other and will do anything to keep each other safe.

This is Sissel’s story. She is the youngest of the four siblings and in the first book she was the least likable. I could relate to Sissel though, I’m the youngest of four too and know how ha
I'm really into the shorter series that seem to be taking over the YA genre right now because I am so not in to long series right now. I absolutely loved Berserker for all of it's weird, western, mythological glory and Ransacker was a really lovely follow up. This one takes place three years after Bersker's conclusion and the Hempsteads are settling in life in Montana nicely, until a fire destroys their home and they are forced to separate in order to survive. Hanne and Owen go east for a cattle ...more
Mrs. Kenyon
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020-audiobooks
The Hemstads are finally settled in a small Montana town and are trying to keep their secret hidden. Their family has special powers that were granted by the Norse gods and they fled their homeland to protect themselves. Sissel, the youngest girl, thought she was the only one who didn’t have a power; until she discovers that she is a Ransacker. She can find precious metals, even gold, and bring it to her. But this small Montana town is not safe. The Pinkertons have sent a spy and he is pretendin ...more
Nov 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an eARC of this title for review.

I read Berserker last year and was so excited to see that Laybourne was going to continue the series. This story focuses mainly on Sissel and her discovery of being a Ransacker (this is the Nyette gift of finding and manipulating metals). The only reason I gave it 4 instead of 5 stars is that it started a bit slow, and even though it was mainly focused on Sissel, the storylines also diverged every
Oh did I love this 2nd book in Emmy Laybourne's 2nd series! If you have not read her first Monument 14 series, YOU MUST!!! And with just 2 books in the Berserker series, I could not stop turning the pages! Back in Berserker, Norwegian brothers and sisters run to the United States from an evil Baron and try to hide their powers. But with these powers also come curses. With a wildfire destroying their home in the Wild West, the Hamsted family must break up for awhile to earn money to come home and ...more
I’m only giving this book 4 out of 5 stars for minor reasons, but it really was a very good book. I was not aware that this story would be told from Sissel’s POV more, and she was so whiney and immature it was SO PAINFUL. I’m at least glad there was plenty from Hanne’s POV still. She’s still my favorite with Owen. I especially liked seeing them fight and still manage to come back together as a unit.
As for Sissel……ugh. So annoying. First off, I actually kinda liked James???? I did NOT like McKra
Samantha Hastings
Mar 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I adored Berserker so I was hoping this sequel would be just as good...and it is! Ransacker is predominantly told by Sissel the youngest of the Hemstead family and the only one without a Nytte—a special power from the Norse gods. Until she discovers that she can sense gold and other metals in the ground. But her new found abilities could lead to their discovery...

What I loved 🖤🖤🖤:
1. The western setting and gold rush with a Norse mythological twist.
2. Lots of action and adventure from cattle sta
Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Norse mythology meets the American Wild West in this sequel to Berserker. The Hemstad siblings all possess magical powers, Nyette, passed down from the Norse Gods. Sister Hanne is a Berserker -- she goes into a murderous rage when she senses a loved one is in danger. In Berserker, the Hemsteds fled Norway for Montana in the 1800s. In Ransacker, the siblings have settled into a simple, frontier life. They are trying to lay low as brother Knut is wanted back in Norway and Baron Fjelstad is searchi ...more
Nov 22, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: l
Well, I got the Berserker-on-Berserker fight I wanted, but it was so disappointing. This book was fine, but Sissel was kind of a meh character. I didn't like her in the previous book, and while she's not as bad here, Laybourne didn't do enough to make me flat out like her. And it really didn't help that she (view spoiler) Anyway, I also wasn't happy with ...more
I read this ARC via NetGalley. This is a very unique YA series. I loved how the first book, Beserker, infused Norse mythology and Norwegian culture into a family story of settlement in the US, 1880’s. The characters were well developed and I felt attached to each of the 4 siblings as well as their guide Owen. Three of the siblings have a Nytteson gift that gives them fantastical abilities.

Since this book focused on Sissel, who was the least likable sibling from the first book, it was hard to adj
Jul 12, 2021 rated it liked it
Do you ever get the feeling that an author had specific intentions then changed their mind halfway through? That's very much the vibe I get from this book. It wasn't terrible, but it didn't live up to the original.

(view spoiler)
David Cothran
Aug 17, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Berserker and Ransacker are fun, quite entertaining novels set in the 1800s that chronicle the lives of some immigrants with extraordinary powers linked to their heritage.

No spoilers here other than what you'd get from jacket notes. I really enjoyed Berserker, and Ransacker concluded the story (no trilogy here!).

It's great for teens and up, younger readers might take issue with a few violent scenes, though they aren't very rough. No dumb love triangles or vampires, just solid storytelling and e
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What is better than an origin story of a person gifted with incredible powers? As much as I loved Berserker, I loved Ransacker even more because we see Sissel's evolution from weakness to strength, in ways that are compelling, thrilling and emotionally satisfying. What's more: we are able to spend more time with the rest of the family, as they make their way through their new circumstances, as well as dealing with the repercussions from the trail of bodies left behind in Berserker. The story mad ...more
Lori Tincher
Mar 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Magic and mayhem, RANSACKER is perfection! I was so engrossed in every page, rooting for the Hemstads on their journey into new lives and protecting their loved ones. Powerful women, it was thrilling to read how sisters Hanne and Sissel take their fates into their own hands, all while maintaining their independence and strength during a time when women were expected to depend on men for safety. If you loved BERSERKER (and why wouldn’t you?? 🤗), RANSACKER is one of the greatest sequels I’ve ever ...more
Dominique -
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing, I thought the first book was good but on so many levela this book elevated that. The themes of family and love and learning to love ones self really reaonate with me. While reading this book I had moments of out loud laughter and many, many tears. Every part of this book made sense and wrapped up very well in the end. Though I must admit some plot things did seem a touch to convenient they were hard not to love and appreciate. Overall a wonderful and well thought out book.
Fay Tannerr
Nov 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
Ransacker is told mostly from Sissel’s point of view and also some from Hanne’s point.

At first I was hesitant about this book being narrated by Sissel as I found her annoying in Berserker, but as I read I was glad to discover that Sissel had matured and was more practical. And it was good to read more about Hanne and Owen.

Ransacker was a good companion novel to Berserker and I found it fascinating and intriguing. With Norse mythology and the wild west, I think this duology is definitely somethin
Susan Burlew
Feb 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaway
Very interesting book. After reading and enjoying Berserker I looked forward to this book. The story is about 4 siblings from Norway. They each have a power gifted from the old gods. After some trouble they flee to America looking for an uncle, their last living relative. Unfortunately he is also dead. This is mostly about the youngest girl Sissel who just learns about her power. She is a Ransacker and able to sense and manipulate metals. I won this in a goodreads giveaway- thank you.
Kaitlyn Tiara Hoderfield
Great story!

This was a wonderfully written story containing a great deal of Norse mythology, cowboys, action, romance, betrayal, and it is chalk full of plot twists that will keep you thirsty for more! I have read this and Berserker, and I hope she writes more books about the Nyette life.
Jana (HokuGirlReads)
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Defiantly worth the read! I liked that this being the continuation of Berserker had a dual perspective from both sisters points of view which offered a redeeming quality to some of the characters. I thought the author did a great job keeping your invested in the story.
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Family of Liars
  • The Soul Throne
  • Some Kind of Happiness
  • Scarred (Never After, #2)
  • Deceived by the Gargoyles (Monstrous Matches, #2)
  • Bow Before the Elf Queen
  • The Pawn and The Puppet (The Pawn and The Puppet #1)
  • The Ravens (The Ravens, #1)
  • The Year of Shadows
  • Skin of the Sea (Skin of the Sea, #1)
  • In the Afterlight (The Darkest Minds, #3)
  • Triple-Duty Bodyguards
  • Hot Vampire Next Door: Season One (Midnight Harbor, #1)
  • Freeing Luka (Clecanian #2)
  • Death Kissed (Arcane Arts Academy, #5)
  • The Unseelie Crown (Maze of Shadows, #2)
  • Vagina Obscura: An Anatomical Voyage
  • Psycho Shifters (Cruel Shifterverse, #1)
See similar books…
EMMY LAYBOURNE is a Young Adult novelist best known for her Monument 14 series, an internationally best-selling trilogy that has been translated into 9 languages. Her standalone book Sweet won a Junior Library Guild Award, was a YALSA Quick Pick and got a Perfect Ten rating from VOYA. Her latest books, Berserker, and Ransacker tell the story of a family of Norwegian teens with ancient Viking power ...more

Other books in the series

Berserker (2 books)
  • Berserker (Berserker, #1)

Related Articles

Here at Goodreads World Headquarters, we're always on alert for any shifts in readerly attention that we can spot. Recently we've noticed a...
105 likes · 12 comments