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A Saga of Survivors

A post-apocalyptic saga

“A new and fresh view on the Norse gods … thrilling from the first page … a knock-out Icelandic fantasy.” — Morgunbladid daily, a major Icelandic newpaper

[The trilogy is only available in Icelandic at the moment, but we got sample translations in English translated by a professional translator, funded by The Icelandic Literature Center (see at the bottom of this page). For rights in Eastern Europe, contact Krok International Rights Agency. For other foreign rights and further information:  emilhpetersen@gmail.com]

A Saga of Survivors is a story about the Norse gods that survived Ragnarök and their struggle, adventures and voyages in a world they lost control of. It is a continuation of the prophecy of the seeress. It is a story about the post-world.

  • An extensive narrative that draws on speculative fiction, hard-boiled action, and literary fiction.
  • The aftermath of the Norse mythic apocalypse.
  • The survivors and their struggles, adventures and voyages in a world they lost control of.
  • A story that addresses: myths, history, religion, folklore, politics, philosophy, literature, language, contemporary times, multiculturalism, and more.
  • The development of a new world, full of wonders and weirdness.
  • The destiny of the Aesir.
  • The destiny of the People (humans and creatures alike).
  • Together with concise flashbacks, and in a nonlinear fashion, the whole trilogy spans the time from Ginnungagap (the primordial void) to Ragnarök, and from post-Ragnarök to the year 2313 in the post-world.

What Happened After Ragnarök?

The brothers Hödur and Baldur found themselves among the few Aesir that survived the end of the world. Following the catastrophe, the efforts to build an improved world out of the ashes were derailed by internal disagreements and violent arguments. The new generation of ruling Aesir was divided into two factions – except for the blind one, Hödur, who went into self-appointed exile because of what happened in Asgard in the past.

Once again, humanity spread across Earth, but without the guidance of the Aesir. This new world is ominously similar to the one of old, and now, millennia after Ragnarök, the world seems doomed to reprise its awful end. Creatures and supernatural beings are coming up to the surface and dark and powerful forces – headed by certain surviving Aesir – are on the rise, threatening the very existence of humans.


Saga of Survivors I: Hödur & Baldur (2010; 299 pp) is the first novel in the Saga of Survivors trilogy. Fast-paced, original and limber, Hödur & Baldur is at once a dystopian fantasy thriller, an exploration of the characters of the surviving Aesir, and a critical examination of the status of men, creatures and gods in a deceptive and dangerous world. This is a story about the odd gods that survived, and the ones who were revived, such as Nanna and Skadi the Huntress. The inner time of the book starts in Iceland and Iraq in 2010, and ends in Lund, Sweden, and at Montauk point in USA. But the brutal showdown and time travel in Camp Hero is only the beginning of what the Aesir and their followers will face.


A Saga of Survivors II: Verge of Ruins (2012; 466 pp), the second installment of the trilogy, carries on the tale of the survivors. The story brings together mythology, history and contemporary commentary, and the result is an exciting, entertaining, profound and tightly woven narrative, which includes, among many other things: the arid Wastelands of the year 2310, the awakening of the Terracotta Army in 2012, the search for the Last Druid, an Icelandic troll tribe controlling the city-state of Takram (in the ruins of Belgrade) in central Europe, and airship dogfights. A fantastical post-apocalyptic world takes shape, and as it does, it brings up questions of multiculturalism, religion, cause and effect, and the power of myths.


A Saga of Survivors III: Nidhoggur (2014; 596 pp) is the final installment of the trilogy. In this extensive concluding volume, the finale is always pending. The Aesir face their past and their future, their origins and roles. They travel wide on their airship in search for the way to Náströnd, in order to stop the rising Nidhoggur-empire. The Huntress Skadi leads a fellowship over vast Wastelands, where dead cities hiss and abandoned towns wail, where creatures and bandits could be lurking behind every corner. The sorceress and bounty-hunter Heidur is not who she appears to be. The world of humans and civilized races is on the verge of another Chaos.


Praise for Saga of Survivors: Hödur & Baldur

“[Hödur & Baldur] is a new and fresh view on the Norse gods, and they become very vivid in the reader’s mind. The book is thrilling from the first page and ends in an incredible showdown between Váli, Hödur and Baldur. The ending is a surprise, and will leave the reader waiting in desperation for the trilogy’s next installment. Saga of Survivors: Hödur & Baldur is a good novel, but what is perhaps more important, it is a knock-out Icelandic fantasy.”

Morgunbladid daily, a major Icelandic daily newspaper

“The world created by Emil is convincing, and the story is very entertaining.”

Kiljan, the main Icelandic TV-program on literature


Praise for Saga of Survivors: Verge of Ruins

 “The story’s universe is extremely clever, and Emil deserves praise for his world-building […] Like its predecessor, the story rises to a fevered climax during its last pages, which are nail-bitingly exciting.”

Morgunbladid daily

“Without doubt, we recommend the story for all fans of Norse mythology, dystopian- and/or urban fantasies.”

– The staff of Nexus, the most prominent Sci-fi and Fantasy store in Iceland


islit log

Here are sample translations from Saga of Survivors, funded by The Icelandic Literature Center: