My latest novel ‘Daughter of Doom’ was published in Dutch this summer. It takes places in the ninth century, the so-called Viking Age. In these dark times, a Viking girl and a young Flemish nun have the adventure of a lifetime.
Synopsis (courtesy of Flanders Literature).
Denmark, 870 AD. Yrsa is a tough Viking girl with a club foot who won’t let herself be pushed around. She turns out to be a seer, which makes her even more of an outsider. When her father and his men return from a raid with a nun, who’s also a king’s granddaughter, Yrsa is tasked with looking after the hostage. The two girls and everything they believe in couldn’t be more different. And yet, slowly a friendship develops between Yrsa and Sister Job. When the nun is raped and she and Yrsa leave the perpetrator for dead, they’re forced to flee. Can they escape the wrath of Yrsa’s clan? Can they escape their fate?
The Flemish newspaper ‘De Standaard’ described it as an extraordinary young adult novel and it earned a spot in their top 5 young adult novels of 2022. The novel also made the longlist of the yearly Boon award.
The Dutch newspaper ‘Trouw’ wrote: A compelling historical adventure full of exciting, filmic scenes. Van Rijckeghem proves yet again that he’s one of the best writers in the genre.
JaapLeest wrote: Gripping from start to finish.
Flanders Literature wrote: Daughter of Doom’ is a cinematic adventure novel in which two women hold their own at a time when this was anything but a given. Jean-Claude van Rijckeghem has created two beautiful characters, who are deeply rooted in their respective faiths. Both Yrsa and Job are convinced that fate is unavoidable, each in their own way, and yet they manage to find their own path in life. Van Rijckeghem peppers the story with action and suspense, but never at the expense of depth. The occasional humour is a nice finishing touch. A remarkable book about fate, faith and free will, in vivid language.