Viking in Love

by Doug Cenko (Author)

Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
In this laugh-out-loud picture book, a Viking falls in love and must face the only thing in his way of attaining it: his fear of the sea.

Stig is your quintessential Viking guy. He loves fresh air, stew, and adorable kittens . . . but he hates the sea. Ingrid is your quintessential Viking gal. She loves all of the above and the sea. What happens when Stig sees Ingrid? Of course, he falls head over heels. But there is one significant problem that stands in their way: the sea. Will Stig find a way to overcome his fears and woo the bold and beautiful Ingrid? Only if he uses his Viking ingenuity . . . and a few kittens.
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$16.19 $17.99

Kirkus Reviews

A funny and pure tale proving that love conquers all.


Cenko assures readers that no kittens were harmed in the making of this yarn, which is enough to leave the roughest berserker dewy-eyed.

Publishers Weekly

Ingrid, "the most fearless Viking he'd ever seen," inspires timid Stig to overcome his fear of the sea in this well-crafted, endearing Viking romance. Pale skinned and red bearded, Stig loves "fresh air, hearty stew, and adorable kittens," but unlike his compatriots, he does not like the ocean. When pale-skinned, blond-haired Ingrid greets him ("Hei") just before a wave carries her away, Stig falls head-over-heels and resolves to give her a "super-mushy" note with a heart emblazoned on the front. Cenko's polished digital illustrations are cinematic in their storytelling, working hand in hand with the narrative's smooth pacing: comic scenes show Stig futilely folding his letter into a paper boat and paper airplane, and questionably tying it to a kitten he plans to toss into the wet, before finally venturing into the water on a dragon-shaped inner tube. His effort is ill-fated, but a tender conclusion flips the script on classic storybook endings and leaves even the sea creatures smiling. Ages 3-7. (Dec.)

Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

"As heartwarming as it is funny . . . viewers will love this book as much as Stig loves Ingrid." —BCCB Review
Doug Cenko
Doug Cenko lives in Chicago with his wife and daughter. He is the illustrator of Cats!, and the author/illustrator of My Mama is a Mechanic and My Papa is a Princess. The six-year old version of Doug is freaking out right now that someone let him make a book with a transforming cheese monster truck.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Viking Books for Young Readers
Publication date
December 20, 2021
BISAC categories
JUV001000 - Juvenile Fiction | Action & Adventure
JUV026000 - Juvenile Fiction | Love & Romance
JUV022030 - Juvenile Fiction | Legends, Myths, & Fables | Norse
Library of Congress categories
Picture books

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