Norse Mythology

Norse Mythology

Book - 2017
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Neil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction. Now he presents his fashioning of the primeval Norse myths into a novel, which begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds, delves into the exploits of the deities, dwarves, and giants, and culminates in Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and the rebirth of a new time and people. Gaiman stays true to the myths while vividly recreating the characters--the gods with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to dupe others, and their tendencey to let passion ignite their actions--and making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.-- adapted from author website
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Company, [2017]
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9780393609097
039360909X
Characteristics: 293 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm

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dgiard
Dec 05, 2020

A few years ago, I sat in a cafe in Bergen on the west coast of Norway, sipping a coffee and enjoying a small pastry. It was sweet and satisfying by itself; but I enjoyed it enough to order another; and then, another.

The stories within Neil Gaiman's "Norse Mythology" are like this. Each story is short and easily consumable (about 10-25 pages) and stands on its own; but together, they weave an epic of the gods of Scandinavia.

We hear the adventures of Odin, Thor, Loki, Balder, and the gods of Asgard, along with the giants, dwarves, creatures, and sentient rocks and plants that inhabit their universe. We hear of shape-shifting and battles, and treachery, and love. We learn about the families of the gods and their births and their deaths.

Gaiman has inserted pagan gods into his books in the past ("American Gods" and "Anansi Boys") and even written entire books around Thor, Loki, and Odin ("Odd and the Frost Giants"), but those books extended the legends of the deities, while this book pulls from the original source material - the oral stories recounting the adventures of these immortals, from the beginning of the world to Ragnarok - the final battle of the gods.

He does so with a voice that suggests these tales are told around a campfire at night.

Some of these stories were long familiar to me from the reading of my youth and some of them I had not heard. But all seemed fresh as told by Gaiman.

We have always known that Neil Gaiman knows how to tell a story. But with "Norse Mythology", he proves that he can tell someone else's story.

ArapahoeTom Oct 05, 2020

Neil Gaiman proves that some stories can be timeless.

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nick_canning
Sep 24, 2020

I generally loved reading this book. I loved learning about all the tales of the Norse gods. It felt like a was teleported back in time, huddled around the fire in a Viking camp hearing Neil tell the adventures of the gods. Neil tells these tales in an exciting way that doesn't feel boring; he tells them in his own way and encourages the reader to retell these tales in their own way, which I will. I just started to play the 2018 God of War for the Playstation, and that game is the perfect pairing with this book. I was so excited to read and discover more about one of my favourite marvel avengers and Norse methodology's in-depth lore. This book is a wild ride that I fully recommended to anyone. I love comparing the similarity of Norse methodology and modern-day Christianity.

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austinginah
Aug 28, 2020

Wonderful stories told by a master writer.

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blue_bird_1563
Jul 10, 2020

I thought that Neil Gaiman did a very good job telling the stories of Norse Mythology. These stories are hard to share because they weren’t really ever written down. Neil did a great job at bringing these historic legends to life.

Hillsboro_JeanineM Feb 19, 2020

Gaiman has had a long fascination with Norse mythology and does an amazing job of making the Norse mythology accessible. i recommend reading in small bites which works well with the his format.

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andrasea
Feb 11, 2020

I really enjoyed reading this book after watching the History Channel's "Vikings" series. It was also interesting to note how they used a lot of the Norse God stories in the TV series. Additionally, this book is based on the original poems and records called "The Poetic Edda" for which there's an English translation done by the author Jackson Crawford. Again. Awe inspiring stories, some of which I intend to read to my future children.

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Luvnmusic95
Dec 27, 2019

Very quick, easy read. Took me one day to get through because I couldn't stop. I only wish it had been longer and the stories might have been more in depth.

ReadingAdviser_leni Jun 21, 2019

Truly fascinating, and really interesting reading about the Norse gods’ stories.

LPL_KatieF Mar 08, 2019

I listened to the audiobook as I was healing from a minor surgery. Neil Gaiman's quick wit and lovely reading voice kept me company while I spent a few days in bed. Loki's antics cheered me up and I learned so much about Norse mythology!

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blue_bird_1563
Jul 23, 2020

blue_bird_1563 thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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Mbussey
Aug 25, 2018

Mbussey thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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Mbussey
Aug 25, 2018

“Of course it was Loki. It's always Loki.”

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shayshortt
Feb 21, 2017

There were things Thor did when something went wrong. The first thing he did was ask himself if what had happened was Loki’s fault. Thor pondered. He did not believe that even Loki would have dared to steal his hammer. So he did the next thing he did when something went wrong, and went to ask Loki for advice.

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shayshortt
Feb 21, 2017

In the beginning, there was nothing but the mist world and the fire world. From these came Ymir, a giant both male and female, the first of all beings. Ymir was slain by Odin, called the all-father, for Odin both created the gods that you will read about here, and breathed life into the first humans. In these pages, Thor will acquire his famous hammer, the mighty Mjollnir. Loki will get his fellow gods into and out of trouble countless times, until he finally plays the trick that will lose him their trust once and for all. Witness the creation of the great walls of Asgard, the genesis of the gift of poetry, and the source of the gods’ immortality, as retold by Neil Gaiman.

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