Odin’s Promise Series

Odin's Promise, by Sandy Brehl

Odin’s Promise: A Novel of Norway
Book 1 in the Odin’s Promise trilogy)
Softcover • 236 pages • $13.95
Kindle edition • $4.99

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Crispin Books • May 2014
Juvenile Fiction / Historical / World War II / Norway / Ages 8-12

Winner of 2014 Midwest Book Award
for Children’s Fiction!

“It is spring of 1940, and 11-year-old Mari should be celebrating the long summer days that have finally reached her rural Norwegian village. Instead, she and her family are trying to cope with the recent occupation by Nazi soldiers. . . . Brehl offers a seldom-seen slice of daily life during WWII in this compelling tale of growing up. Strength of family, community, and cultural heritage are prominent themes, and the author does a commendable job illustrating the complex motivations of people on both sides of the war. . . . Recommended for historical-fiction fans and animal lovers alike.” – ALA Booklist

“Mari, a Norwegian girl, is forced to grow up fast when Nazi soldiers occupy her village in 1940. Readers will cheer for Mari as she discovers her inner strength – and the courage to help celebrate Norway’s spirit of resistance.”
–Kathleen Ernst, author of the Caroline Abbott series from American Girl

“Not since Marie McSwigan’s Snow Treasure have I read such a book about the heroic roles children played in the resistance movement in Norway during WWII.”
– Carole Estby Dagg, author of The Year We Were Famous

“Love of dog, love of family, and love of country – all are woven together in this beautifully written, emotionally taut novel of one girl’s coming of age during war time. Realistic yet hopeful.”
– Gayle Rosengren, author of What the Moon Said

Best Girl-Empowering Books of 2014 (Ages 9–12)
A Mighty Girl

Ten Best Indie Middle-Grade Novels of 2014
ForeWord Magazine


Odin’s Promise is historical fiction for middle-grade readers, a novel depicting the first year of German occupation of Norway as seen through the eyes of a young girl.

Eleven-year-old Mari grew up tucked safely under the wings of her parents, grandma, and her older siblings. When Hitler’s troops invaded Norway under the guise of “occupying a friendly country,” she is forced to grow beyond her “little girl” nickname and comfortable patterns to deal with harsh new realities.

At her side for support and protection is Odin, her faithful elkhound.

After she witnesses a terrifying event on the mountainside, truths are revealed: the involvement of her family and friends in the resistance; the value of humor in surviving hard times; the hidden radio in her grandma’s cottage.

Odin, not one for quiet resistance, makes an enemy of soldiers who patrol the area.

The year will bring many challenges, as Mari confronts danger, develops her inner strength and voice, and finds she is able to endure hardship and heartache.

Bjorn's Gift, by Sandy Brehl

Bjorn’s Gift
Book 2 in the Odin’s Promise trilogy)
Softcover • 272 pages • $14.95
Kindle edition • $4.99

Buy Bjorn’s Gift (softcover):

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[link to come]

Crispin Books • October 2016
Juvenile Fiction / Historical / World War II / Norway / Ages 8-12

“In Bjorn’s Gift, Mari’s small town is occupied by German soldiers, her community divided. Though Mari and her family present an obedient facade, their work with the resistance grows more complicated and more dangerous with each passing day. An exciting read, and a detailed look at Norway’s occupation through the eyes of a young, brave girl.”
— Angela Cerrito, author of The Safest Lie

“Brings to life the courage of the Norwegian people during the German occupation. Author Sandy Brehl doesn’t shy away from showing the complex ways individuals respond to hardship and beautifully expresses the strength and hope family provides in the midst of difficulty.”
– Caroline Starr Rose, author of Blue Birds and May B.

A well-researched book about Norway and the World War II occupation.”
– Irene Levin Berman, author of We Are Going To Pick Potatoes

“A sensitive, compassionate, and honest portrayal of a Norwegian family coping with the aftermath of Nazi invasion. Brehl masterfully weaves together a story of danger, sacrifice, and hope, one that flows so seamlessly that readers will forget Bjorn’s Gift is fiction.”
– Liza Wiemer, author of Hello?


Bjorn’s Gift is the second book in the Odin’s Promise middle-grade historical novel trilogy set in Norway during World War II.

In Bjorn’s Gift, young teen Mari faces growing hardships and dangers in her small village in a western fjord during the second and third years of German occupation, as German troops and local Nazi supporters move closer into her family’s daily life, and her classmate Leif becomes active in the Norwegian Nazi youth party.

Mari struggles to live up to her brother Bjorn’s faith in her as she becomes more involved in risky resistance activities, trusting only her family and a few close friends.

Across Norway, oppressive laws are imposed in the months from Fall 1941 to early 1943, with dire local consequences.

Difficult decisions force Mari to admit that many things in life are not easily sorted into good or bad, and she is forced to wonder if Hitler will ever be defeated . . . and whether the occupation of Norway will ever end.

The series is ideal for dog lovers, for Norwegian Americans and other European-Americans whose ancestors were involved in resistance movements in World War II, and for all who enjoy reading stories about World War II history. Bjorn’s Gift is a sequel to Odin’s Promise: A Novel of Norway (2014). A third and final book in the Odin’s Promise trilogy is scheduled for May 2017.


Sandy Brehl is a teacher and an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators. She lives in Muskego, Wisconsin, near Milwaukee.