Fulltrui: Patrons in Asatru Mist
Megalithica Books, 2011
Mist offers up a book that is intended to help the reader find a patron within the ranks of the Aesir and Vanir with Fulltrui: Patrons in Asatru. Alas, instead of spending time focusing on what is promised, the book takes a turn for the worse early on when the author professes that she is “not an expert” and “everything in this book should be taken with a grain of salt.”
The book is set in a personal tone, with an underdeveloped voice as the author tells her own opinions and beliefs, but never gives any underlying theory to back up her assertions. The entire book has a distinctly neo-Pagan flavor, as it spends a lot of time talking about meditations to become closer to the Gods, Jotun and traveling within the Nine Realms, but less than nothing about the existing lore regarding these topics, which will be a deal-killer for any reconstructionist readers.
The third chapter, entitled “Traveling the Nine Worlds” paints a fanciful image of the author’s own design, leading the reader on a guided tour of Asgard. While giving no explanation for her imagery, she often states the danger of traveling through these places and even states that “If Heimdall does not let you into Asgard, then you’re not getting in, unless you use ‘sneaky’ tactics to get around him.” This general theme reappears in Chapter Seven when she concludes that “tour groups” meet on the Rainbow Bridge to catch double-decker buses pulled by goats, and that Valkyries act as tour guides (“and we’re walking… and we’re walking… and we’re scooping up the souls of the fallen… and we’re walking…”). If all else fails she suggest that the reader imagine having a GPS device equipped in his/her torso(!)
Questionable imagery aside, the information dealing with what is presumably the topic of the book — finding patronage with the Aesir and Vanir — is sparse. Again, no theory supporting the recommended practices are given; instead, the author states that the meditations provided “…were created with the best intentions and personal understanding of our gods” and goes on to state that they guarantee no certain result. The author displays a lack of confidence in the most crucial places and constantly builds herself up just to undo the meager amount of work she has accomplished.
With its overwhelming preference for unverifiable personal gnosis, Fulltrui would only satisfy only the most open-minded of Heathens no matter how good it was, but sadly the poor writing and lack of information eliminate any usefulness whatsoever. The best parts of the book are the scattered tidbits of text quoted from better authors like Raven Kaldera, Diana Paxson and Bil Linzie. Grammatical errors, unanswered questions and imagery that belongs with nine-sided dice aside, Fulltrui is simply very empty. The meditations are outlandish, cartoonish, and outright dangerous; the author’s style both arrogant and lacking in confidence, and the entire package shouldn’t have made it past the acquisitions editors at Megalithica. Fulltrui: Patrons in Asatru is not full of the patronage and gods it promises. It is full, nay, packed, with boloney.