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Norse Mythology

T of the high wise daring and cunning; Thor Odin’s son incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki son of a giant blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassable manipulatorGaiman fashions these primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds and In the beginning there was nothing but mist and flamesAt least that's what the Edda claimsI've always been fascinated with Norse Mythology and with everything ancient in general With its strong impact on Marvel's movies metal music and JRR Tolkien the AllFather of high fantasy references to the mighty Gods of Asgard and the impending twilight thereof are a part of daily life Neil Gaiman did not invent a story from the start He had the material the facts the descriptions ready Yet Norse Mythology is the stellar proof of his tremendous talent and ingenuity because like a new Odin he instilled breath in myths existing for thousands of years he commanded to life frost giants demons dwarves elves Æsir and Vanir alike and crafted a marvelous collection of stories ideal to read them in a cold winter's night next to a grinding fire holding a cup of warm content while your mind travels in wild landscapes and flies in the form of a raven spying the creation of the world and its destruction only to be reborn again For in Norse Mythology it is obvious that rebirth always follows death “Behind the depth before the heightSurrounded by the serpent JörmundgandWorld of man in the middleOf heat and ice built by the Ymer brow” One of the most astonishing things you realise while reading Norse Mythology is that human minds work in a similar manner all over the world You can't help but notice the similarities with other mythologies the traditions of people who thrived miles away Take the creation of the Nine Worlds for example there was a flood one created by Ymer's blood that destroyed all life only to start it anew You will notice the same pattern in Greek Mythology with Deucalion and Pyrrha in Genesis with Noah's ark and many other cultures like the Aboriginal tribes and the Mayas You will also discover the origins of the Middle Earth's creation and the races inhabiting it and you'll marvel at the parallels between Gjallerhorn which will be blown by Heimdall at the end of all things to wake the Gods and the Horn of Valere which will summon the Heroes to battle in Tarmon Gai'don the Final Battle in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time It's chilling and strangely satisfyingOdin Thor and Loki are the main dramatis personae followed by Freyr and Freya Baldr and Týr Through Neil Gaiman's eyes his witty narration infused with humour subtle comments and foreboding you witness Odin's uest for wisdom and the price he had to pay to acuire it; you will find out how Loki made Sif go bald and thus the greatest treasures came to the possesion of the Gods; you will follow a strange man's efforts to create the walls of Asgard demanding to be paid with the sun the moon and beautiful Freya “FrøyaBlue her eyesGold of hairA maiden so fair” You will shiver before the children of Loki the serpent of Midgard the lady of the realm of the Dead and wolf Fenrir the demise of the Gods “I watched as he shoutedTo the giants who died that dayHe held up his hammer highAnd called to Odin for a sign” You will laugh at Thor's disguise in order to take back Mjolnir and taste the heavenly mead of Poetry and Widsom which was made of blood; you'll visit the land of the giants alongside Thor and Loki and you'll be tricked by illusions; you'll search for the apples of Iðunn which grant eternal youth apples of Hesperides anyone? after the Gods lost them thanks to Loki; you'll see Freyr finding his missing part; you will steal the cauldron that brews the greatest beer; and you will mourn the death of the Sun “Honour your brother's name unarmed or blindLet me aid you in your aim don't stay behind Let's maim immortality and death to a deity” You will find out how the first fishing net was created and why and finally you will freeze in the Coldest Winter the prelude to the extinction of mankind and the Twilight of the GodsRagnarök “RagnarökSee the earth go up in flamesRagnarökThe great serpent writhes in rageThe doom of gods now hath comeThe fall of the sunThe gates of Hel devour the deadAt the twilight of the gods” Neil Gaiman's pantheon is ruled by the same passions desires and ambitions with the mortals His Gods are naive and cruel spontaneous and bloodthirsty; Thor is not particularly bright nor as hot as Chris Hemsworth and Loki is a spiteful creature a puppeteer a troublemaker and by the end you'll crave his suffering “Asgard's always been my homeBut I'm of different bloodI will overthrow the throneDeceiverDeceiver of the gods” Norse Mythology may not be original in its content but it is innovative and deeply inspiring in its prose and the blessed talent of the hand that wrote it It is a uick and relaxing read I highly recommend if you're searching for your next epic adventure “Thor Odin's sonProtector of mankindRide to meet your fateYour destiny awaits” Buddy read with Eliasdgian Playlist in order of lyrics' appearance Midgard Therion Frøya's Theme Leave's Eyes Thor Manowar Brother's Bane Týr Ragnarök Stormwarrior Deceiver of the Gods Amon Amarth Twilight of the Thunder God Sabaton Amon Amarth cover

read & download Norse Mythology

Neil Gaiman long inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction presents a bravura rendition of the Norse gods and their world from their origin though their upheaval in Ragnarok In Norse Mythology Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon Odin the highes Definitely short but imminently readable This is one of the best straight mythology books I've read when it comes to pure enjoyment I say this fully aware that I'm a Gaiman fanboy and yet I still mean it Don't look for fiction here Rather look for the source material and a clear understanding of the Norse mythos as far as we have it So much has been lost and then there's a ton of fragments Alas But what we do have is uite coolMy personal favorite was the story of Baldur's murder and the attempt to raise him up from Hel's domain Hel even agrees graciously to let him come back from the dead as long as not a single person on any level of the World Tree refuses to weep for the man Baldur is a sweet man that makes the flowers grow for goodness sake and it was a very close race but you know how these things goWe all know that LOKI is the reason we can't have nice things Forget children I blame Loki I love the fact that wits and brawn are held in eual esteem but I sure wish there was a lot stories about the women There's plenty of hints Just lost fragments however It's a shameStill what we've got is enough to whet anyone's appetite and I even think this is a perfectly appropriate text for young ones too I definitely plan on reading it to my kid once she holds still long enough for it It'll be a nice companion to the The Kalevala and some Greek stuff too Go Fenrir I'd really love to see Cthulhu go up against him

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Delves into the exploits of deities dwarfs and giants Through Gaiman’s deft and witty prose these gods emerge with their fiercely competitive natures their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions making these long ago myths breathe pungent life agai Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman is a compulsively readable retelling of various myths from Norse MythologyOnce upon a time in that hazy prehistoric time before Goodreads Neil Gaiman was my favorite author Sandman was the gateway drug but I read all the Gaiman works I could get my hands on American Gods Neverwhere Coraline Stardust you get the point As the years went by some of the shine wore off that penny As I explored Gaimain's influences like PG Wodehouse and Ray Bradbury some of the magic was diminishedAnyway I heard Gaimain was writing this book and my interest was rekindled I've been curious about Norse mythology since reading my first Thor comic Gaimain delivers the goods hereIn Norse Mythology Gaimain retells fifteen Norse myths from the creation of the Aesir to Ragnarok the twilight of the gods making them accessible to the modern readerAll of the Norse gods you're familiar with from pop culture namely Odin Thor Loki Balder and Heimdall are here as well as a slew of others like Vidar Kvasir and Hod I was tangentially aware of some of what transpired like Loki giving birth to a six legged horse and Odin hanging from Yggdrasil the world tree for nine days and nights before gaining his wisdom but a lot of it was new to me The Aesir sure liked to booze it up didn't they?While there was uite a bit to like about this book the thing that really stuck in my mind was Naglfar the ship of the dead made out of fingernails Really Loki tying his junk to the beard of a goat for entertainment purposes was right up there thoughReading Norse Mythology I noticed echoes of it in fantasy novels I've read in past couple decades most notably The Elric Saga Part II and The First Chronicles of Amber For my money this is the best thing Gaimain has done since The Graveyard Book though Doctor Who Nothing O'Clock was also pretty sweet Four out of five stars


10 thoughts on “Norse Mythology

  1. says:

    Gaiman is without a doubt one of the most multi talented writers alive today I don’t say this out of a sense of personal bias but with a degree of objectivity Not only does he write fantastic comics intelligent children’s stories and detailed novels about the nature of godhood even if I didn’t personally enjoy them all he also has adapted Norse mythology and re written it with his modern stylish flair He really is a talented man; he is capable of that rare rare thing of being able to write fiction that is worthy of literary criticism but is also ridiculously popular and well just plain cool He has many years of writing ahead of him I hope And I don’t think it is too far a thing to suggest that he may win the noble prize for literature in his lifetime He has contributed much to the arts and this work here shows he has much to give I think he really deserves it So here he has retold some already excellent stories In doing so he makes them approachable and perhaps even engaging for a reader today I do like old poetry though not everyone does I think this can be taken as either an introduction to such works or simply as it is at face value And it really is what it says on the cover it’s a whole bunch or Norse stories about some familiar faces We have Odin conniving and powerful We have Thor strong and honourable And we have Loki cunning and ingenious with his own complex intentions They do battle with each other with the elements and a whole host of nasties But not before Gaiman takes the time to provide you with guided tour of Yggdrasil and the nine worlds that take root from her He clearly establishes the confounds of this mythology before he even begins The collection ends with the most appropriate tale of them all Ragnarok the final destiny of the gods It spends the entirety of the collection building up to it “Until now I have told you of things that have happened in the past things that happened a long time ago Now I shall tell you of the days to come”Thus we witness the end of time The gods fight in one final glorious battle Loki naturally does not fight with the gods of Asgard Instead he leads the armies of the dead against them Many of the gods will die and the pattern will begin anew as their offspring pick up the weapons of their slain forbears; ultimately taking on their mantels The cycle continues as Gaiman captures the heart of Norse mythology here What I also noticed is how these tales have affected his other works Sure the characters are different; yes the setting is warped into something else but you can clearly see how writing this and researching this has oozed out into his other projects This ideas of rejuvenation is repeated in the Sandman series for example Gaiman also narrates his personal journey in the introduction; this book has been a long time coming this topic has clearly helped to propel much of his writing and it really is worth hearing aboutYou can connect with me on social media via My Linktree


  2. says:

    I've always loved mythology folktales and legends They are the original fairy tales of humanity and given the timeless fairytale uality to Gaiman's writing it seemed to follow that he would be the perfect writer for a book of Norse mythology He is In fact Gaiman seems born to write or rewrite mythsNorse mythology is actually one I've always been less familiar with I know Greek Roman and Egyptian fairly well and some Indian as well but my knowledge of Norse mythology kind of ends at Odin Loki Thor and Thor's hammer And even then I don't know much about what they all did To me this book was very interesting and informative as well as a compelling pageturnerGaiman recreates Norse myths in his signature style with a bit of humour a whole bunch of complex characters and a big serving of charm He makes the stories feel modern and fresh yet still timeless You feel like you're reading about millennia old gods but it's very accessible to today's readerNorse Mythology is told in short stories Some of the chapters are very short only a page or two long and others are slightly longer I liked how easy it was to dip in and out of I could go read some of my other books between stories and return to this without a problem I know ease of reading should not be a top priority but it is great to find a book that makes experiencing its stories as easy and non demanding as possibleIt is fast paced and action packed but what shines through most of all is how all these stories tie into important aspects of the real world as stories about gods tend to do This is a fascinating portrait of a time and a people who really truly believed in Odin and Loki and their many escapades It's funny it's eye opening and it's very enjoyable Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube


  3. says:

    Definitely short but imminently readable This is one of the best straight mythology books I've read when it comes to pure enjoyment I say this fully aware that I'm a Gaiman fanboy and yet I still mean it Don't look for fiction here Rather look for the source material and a clear understanding of the Norse mythos as far as we have it So much has been lost and then there's a ton of fragments Alas But what we do have is uite coolMy personal favorite was the story of Baldur's murder and the attempt to raise him up from Hel's domain Hel even agrees graciously to let him come back from the dead as long as not a single person on any level of the World Tree refuses to weep for the man Baldur is a sweet man that makes the flowers grow for goodness sake and it was a very close race but you know how these things goWe all know that LOKI is the reason we can't have nice things Forget children I blame Loki I love the fact that wits and brawn are held in eual esteem but I sure wish there was a lot stories about the women There's plenty of hints Just lost fragments however It's a shameStill what we've got is enough to whet anyone's appetite and I even think this is a perfectly appropriate text for young ones too I definitely plan on reading it to my kid once she holds still long enough for it It'll be a nice companion to the The Kalevala and some Greek stuff too Go Fenrir I'd really love to see Cthulhu go up against him


  4. says:

    “Of course it was Loki It’s always Loki”If you ask me this uote is a sufficient summary of the entirety of Norse mythology lol But no one asked me so I’m going to continue to write down a few of my other thoughts ; P I wish I could have read this before I read Uncle Rick’s “Magnus Chase series” because there were all the details I wanted to know while I read those first two books XD Also it’s kinda funny that Uncle Rick managed to write some of those stories into the plot of his books ; Thor is definitely not the brightest bulb in the chandelier lol What’s with all those giants and other gods that want to marry Freya? Oo I mean what is she? A honeypot for bears? XD They all want to buy a pig in a poke and don’t even know about her fierce temper Haha Poor Freya always reduced to her good looks Guess this game is as old as time shakes head Why are all the giants ugly except of some of the women? lol I mean there were gods Loki Frey who had a relationship with or married a giantess and they obviously were beautiful so I don’t really get why the rest of them even their parents look the way they do The ugliness skipped a generation? lol Why didn’t Balder and Freya start dating? They would have made the perfect children ; P ”Loki was handsome and he knew it People wanted to like him they wanted to believe him but he was undependable and self centred at best mischievous or evil at worst” It was nice to hear about Loki’s family even though I feel sorry for Sigyn I mean he obviously cheated on her or his three kids with the giantess wouldn’t have even existed yet she’s still faithful and stands next to him trying to safe him from the poison of the snake Sigyn deserves everything and the world for this 3 I mean I get it Loki caused Balder’s death and he did a lot of mischief over the centuries did his deeds really ualify to punish him in that cruel manner though? Sigyn and his sons Narfi and Vali had nothing to do with his plotting yet they were the ones that got hurt the most Couldn’t they just have locked Loki in an underground cell and let it be? To watch your children kill each other and to be bound with the intestines of one of them the snake was a little bit over the top wasn’t it? Just saying No wonder he wants revenge in the form of Ragnarok Also if Odin is the All father and sees and knows everything how could he have missed so much? lol If Loki actually managed to do mischief whenever the almighty Odin was on the privy he’s even talented than I thought ; P Last but not least I’ll go and check my family tree now There’s a slight chance I could be one of Loki’s descendants All the mischief plotting scheming being sassy a self confidence you’d have to slay extra one day sounds damn familiar Pity I didn’t inherit his good looks lol ; P This said Happy Reading XDI love Norse mythology so I was kind of bound to read this book sooner or later and I’m really curious how Neil Gaiman wrote this The opinions of my friends seem to be rather mixed on this one and their reviews vary from 5 stars to only 2 or 3 Plus I read some disturbing updates lol Do I really want to read this? XD Well I guess I’ll have to find out if Gaiman’s book works for me or not Hopefully it does Wish me luck crosses fingersPS If it turns out to be bad it's at least not all too long lol


  5. says:

    Hammer of the godsA book written by NEIL GAIMAN about NORSE MYTHOLOGY was a book I was going to read There was no way I was NOT going to read it Mr Gaiman might as well have mentioned me in the dedication page “ and of course Lyn must read this”And I was going to like it He could have written “They were blond and cold The end” and I’d have said WOW succinctly stated he’s a geniusThankfully Gaiman goes into some detail and has crafted for us a beautiful modern saga of the coolest pantheon in the multiverse I of course revisited Deities Demigods Cyclopedia of Gods and Heroes from Myth and Legend and refreshed my memory of these badass northernersAnd like Norman Mailer did with Egyptian mythology in Ancient Evenings and like Kevin Hearne is doing with the Celtic gods in his Iron Druid books so too does Gaiman give life and breath to ancient myth I am also reminded of Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and how he was able to craft a First Age mythos for his fantasyWe learn that unlike the money making Marvel heroes these gods and goddesses are complicated and unfit for easy labels and stereotypes This also made me think of myth in terms of ancient psychological needs and how primitives came up with the gods and their stories A comparative religion study could trace the similarities in many legends and ancient belief systems I am especially interested in a comparative study of Loki and other trickster gods like Coyote and Anansi I was also reminded of American Tall Tales like Paul Bunyon and Pecos Bill and I thought of the origins of these kinds of storiesAnd the author of American Gods is uniuely able to make this than just a history lesson about primitive theology and also than just a current re telling of legend Gaiman reveals Loki as a colorful and complex rogue who is like most of these figures than simply bad or good Although Deities Demigods does list him as Chaotic Evil Odin is darker and mysterious than a grandfatherly figure; he’s cunning dangerous and unpredictable Thor is a simple and straightforward brute sometimes petulant and easily misled Gaiman’s interpretation of the death of Baldr was also very poignantSo turn on Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song tap a keg of mead and enjoyRecommended for Gaiman fans myth and legend fans and everyone else a fun book


  6. says:

    In the beginning there was nothing but mist and flamesAt least that's what the Edda claimsI've always been fascinated with Norse Mythology and with everything ancient in general With its strong impact on Marvel's movies metal music and JRR Tolkien the AllFather of high fantasy references to the mighty Gods of Asgard and the impending twilight thereof are a part of daily life Neil Gaiman did not invent a story from the start He had the material the facts the descriptions ready Yet Norse Mythology is the stellar proof of his tremendous talent and ingenuity because like a new Odin he instilled breath in myths existing for thousands of years he commanded to life frost giants demons dwarves elves Æsir and Vanir alike and crafted a marvelous collection of stories ideal to read them in a cold winter's night next to a grinding fire holding a cup of warm content while your mind travels in wild landscapes and flies in the form of a raven spying the creation of the world and its destruction only to be reborn again For in Norse Mythology it is obvious that rebirth always follows death “Behind the depth before the heightSurrounded by the serpent JörmundgandWorld of man in the middleOf heat and ice built by the Ymer brow” One of the most astonishing things you realise while reading Norse Mythology is that human minds work in a similar manner all over the world You can't help but notice the similarities with other mythologies the traditions of people who thrived miles away Take the creation of the Nine Worlds for example there was a flood one created by Ymer's blood that destroyed all life only to start it anew You will notice the same pattern in Greek Mythology with Deucalion and Pyrrha in Genesis with Noah's ark and many other cultures like the Aboriginal tribes and the Mayas You will also discover the origins of the Middle Earth's creation and the races inhabiting it and you'll marvel at the parallels between Gjallerhorn which will be blown by Heimdall at the end of all things to wake the Gods and the Horn of Valere which will summon the Heroes to battle in Tarmon Gai'don the Final Battle in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time It's chilling and strangely satisfyingOdin Thor and Loki are the main dramatis personae followed by Freyr and Freya Baldr and Týr Through Neil Gaiman's eyes his witty narration infused with humour subtle comments and foreboding you witness Odin's uest for wisdom and the price he had to pay to acuire it; you will find out how Loki made Sif go bald and thus the greatest treasures came to the possesion of the Gods; you will follow a strange man's efforts to create the walls of Asgard demanding to be paid with the sun the moon and beautiful Freya “FrøyaBlue her eyesGold of hairA maiden so fair” You will shiver before the children of Loki the serpent of Midgard the lady of the realm of the Dead and wolf Fenrir the demise of the Gods “I watched as he shoutedTo the giants who died that dayHe held up his hammer highAnd called to Odin for a sign” You will laugh at Thor's disguise in order to take back Mjolnir and taste the heavenly mead of Poetry and Widsom which was made of blood; you'll visit the land of the giants alongside Thor and Loki and you'll be tricked by illusions; you'll search for the apples of Iðunn which grant eternal youth apples of Hesperides anyone? after the Gods lost them thanks to Loki; you'll see Freyr finding his missing part; you will steal the cauldron that brews the greatest beer; and you will mourn the death of the Sun “Honour your brother's name unarmed or blindLet me aid you in your aim don't stay behind Let's maim immortality and death to a deity” You will find out how the first fishing net was created and why and finally you will freeze in the Coldest Winter the prelude to the extinction of mankind and the Twilight of the GodsRagnarök “RagnarökSee the earth go up in flamesRagnarökThe great serpent writhes in rageThe doom of gods now hath comeThe fall of the sunThe gates of Hel devour the deadAt the twilight of the gods” Neil Gaiman's pantheon is ruled by the same passions desires and ambitions with the mortals His Gods are naive and cruel spontaneous and bloodthirsty; Thor is not particularly bright nor as hot as Chris Hemsworth and Loki is a spiteful creature a puppeteer a troublemaker and by the end you'll crave his suffering “Asgard's always been my homeBut I'm of different bloodI will overthrow the throneDeceiverDeceiver of the gods” Norse Mythology may not be original in its content but it is innovative and deeply inspiring in its prose and the blessed talent of the hand that wrote it It is a uick and relaxing read I highly recommend if you're searching for your next epic adventure “Thor Odin's sonProtector of mankindRide to meet your fateYour destiny awaits” Buddy read with Eliasdgian Playlist in order of lyrics' appearance Midgard Therion Frøya's Theme Leave's Eyes Thor Manowar Brother's Bane Týr Ragnarök Stormwarrior Deceiver of the Gods Amon Amarth Twilight of the Thunder God Sabaton Amon Amarth cover


  7. says:

    355 StarsGilgamesh from Mesopotamian religion Izanagi from Japanese creation myth and Zeus from Greek myth These are a few popular figures from many mythologies around the globe I’m here to let you know my thoughts on one of the most popular and well known mythology Norse Mythology told by Neil Gaiman with Odin Thor and Loki at the center of the loreNorse mythology has always been one of the foundations used for most fictional stories in our time I grew up playing tons of video games that were based on these myths without even realizing that they were based on the mythology in the first place For instance Odin as a summon in Final Fantasy franchise Einherjar that were taken to Valhalla by the Valkyrie in preparation for Ragnarok in Valkyrie Profile series or Yggdrasil the tree of life that were depicted in Breath of Fire III but I won’t bore you with these countless video games adaptations Let’s do the most famous example Thor and Loki from Marvel Universe This franchise is so damn popular that every time the name Thor and Loki were mentioned I can’t help but envisioned Chris Hemsworth and Toms Hiddleston as the canon facial features flaunting their long hair everywhere like they’re in a shampoo commercial No idea why they just doPicture Hair of the GodsAnyway my point is Norse mythology is a really important source of material for our current media entertainment and I admit it has always been one of my favorite mythologies along with Japanese Greek and Rome mythologyNorse Mythology is an EXACT retelling of Poetic Edda the source material of the myth which is already fantastic in its own way Neil Gaiman did a great job in adapting the source into a collection of short stories with his own words that made it enjoyable to read especially for beginner to the myth but for me who’s been fed with this myth for almost 20 years I wish there’s something new to be found here For those of you who don’t know the basic outline of Norse Mythology is about the creation of the worlds until the final battle between the Gods and the creatures that will destroy the worlds In case someone who doesn’t know about the myth stumbled upon this review I won’t tell you about the battle itself other than in my opinion it's always epic in all adaptations Picture An example of the kind of battle you’ll find in RagnarokI find Neil’s retelling enjoyable to read but I do have two main problems with it First as I mentioned before for those of you who’ve known about this myth already you won’t find anything new here this is an EXACT retelling that it almost feel like a copy and paste to me I came into this book with the expectation that it will be a full novel with Neil’s own rendition of the myth but nope you can actually go to Wikipedia search Norse Mythology and voila you’ll find the story told here Secondly this is a really expensive book for its content It cost 20 where I live and for a 2 to 3 hour read of a story I’ve heard about almost my whole life is really not worth it I received this book from my friend otherwise I’ll feel so robbed personally “The Norse myths are the myths of a chilly place with long long winter nights and endless summer days myths of a people who did not entirely trust or even like their gods although they respected and feared them” Overall I personally still think that this book is a great introduction to the myth The original source the Poetic Edda languages are hard to dive into and it’s of an info dump compared to this Despite not finding anything original here I still find it enjoyable and good to read I definitely recommend this to any Norse Mythology beginner Neil Gaiman did a great job in this retelling and it’s so easy to understand the words he wrote Plus Norse Mythology is one of the best myths out there You owe it to yourself to read it if you’re interested in knowing about the original tale of Odin Thor Loki Valkyrie Balder Fenrir Mjollnir and many names I'll let you find out about them by yourselfPicture Norse Mythology by Marc Simonetti You can find this and the rest of my Adult EpicHigh Fantasy Sci Fi reviews at Booknest


  8. says:

    Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman is a compulsively readable retelling of various myths from Norse MythologyOnce upon a time in that hazy prehistoric time before Goodreads Neil Gaiman was my favorite author Sandman was the gateway drug but I read all the Gaiman works I could get my hands on American Gods Neverwhere Coraline Stardust you get the point As the years went by some of the shine wore off that penny As I explored Gaimain's influences like PG Wodehouse and Ray Bradbury some of the magic was diminishedAnyway I heard Gaimain was writing this book and my interest was rekindled I've been curious about Norse mythology since reading my first Thor comic Gaimain delivers the goods hereIn Norse Mythology Gaimain retells fifteen Norse myths from the creation of the Aesir to Ragnarok the twilight of the gods making them accessible to the modern readerAll of the Norse gods you're familiar with from pop culture namely Odin Thor Loki Balder and Heimdall are here as well as a slew of others like Vidar Kvasir and Hod I was tangentially aware of some of what transpired like Loki giving birth to a six legged horse and Odin hanging from Yggdrasil the world tree for nine days and nights before gaining his wisdom but a lot of it was new to me The Aesir sure liked to booze it up didn't they?While there was uite a bit to like about this book the thing that really stuck in my mind was Naglfar the ship of the dead made out of fingernails Really Loki tying his junk to the beard of a goat for entertainment purposes was right up there thoughReading Norse Mythology I noticed echoes of it in fantasy novels I've read in past couple decades most notably The Elric Saga Part II and The First Chronicles of Amber For my money this is the best thing Gaimain has done since The Graveyard Book though Doctor Who Nothing O'Clock was also pretty sweet Four out of five stars


  9. says:

    First off the cover of this book is amaze balls I just freaking love it ❤ Many gods and goddesses are named in Norse mythology You will meet uite a few of them in these pages Most of the stories we have however concern two gods Odin and his son Thor and Odin's blood brother a giant's son called Loki who lives with the Aesir in Asgard I have always wanted to read a good book on Norse Mythology and I think Neil Gaiman did a great job explaining some things before the stories The different stories were awesome okay some were mean and what not but they were just so awesome Stories of the gods and giants and ogres and cunning and trickery I just loved it This book isn't very long at all and the stories are short but I think they were still great We don't always have to read big tomes to get good stories That being said I think this would have been a cool trilogy of stories but that's just my opinion I would liked to have seen two books I think that anyone that loves the gods will love or like this book I would recommend it for all of the great stories I can see how they all wanted to drop kick Loki across the room MY BLOG Melissa Martin's Reading List


  10. says:

    ”The Norse myths are the myths of a chilly place with long long winter nights and endless summer days myths of a people who did not entirely trust or even like their gods although they respected and feared them As best we can tell the gods of Asgard came from Germany spread into Scandinavia and then out into the parts of the world dominated by the Vikings In English the gods have left their names in our days of the week You can find Tyr the one handed Odin’s son Odin Thor and Frig the ueen of the gods in respectively Tuesday Wednesday Thursday and Friday”Christianity very nearly drove the old gods of the Northmen from the face of the Earth There was something so tangible about the pagan gods They had personalities fallacies and a sense of humor that didn’t always bode well for their human worshippers If we learned that Loki in particular had taken an interest in our troubles we felt trepidation than relief His cunning intelligence was often used for creating mayhem than it was providing solutions to dire problems He was the gasoline that turned a smoldering warm ash heap into a raging forest fire Loki made enemies of everyone which was why he had to live in a house with four doors facing each direction He was the instigator of much of the troubles the gods found themselves facing but he was also the one who always brilliantly conceived a plan that saved them from those troubles Was Loki of an asset or a liability? You will have to decide that for yourself I do know that finding out he was not on the side of the gods in the final battle Ragnarok made me tremble with concern for the gods Who didn’t want Thor on their side? He wasn’t the brightness bulb in a chandelier but once he entered a fight one side breathed a sigh of relief and the other side started fleeing for their lives His magic belt Megingjord doubled his strength but it was his hammer Mjollnir that made Giants Trolls and other gods tremble The great recently departed Stan Lee mined the Old Norse tales heavily for his writing These Norse gods were superheroes long before the term ever existed What would we give up to have all the wisdom of the world? Odin gave up an eye He even plucked it from his head with his own fingers He was the god of the gods and according to legend the father of us all ”Because he was the father of the gods and because he breathed the breath of life into our grandparents’ grandparents’ grandparents Whether we are gods or mortals Odin is the father of us all”How about this for creepy? The Death Ship Naglfar was made from the untrimmed fingernails of the dead A friend of mine was once moved into a different office where he worked He kept finding fingernail clippings in drawers in between stacks of paper under the desk legs wedged behind the computer speakers snagged in the carpet fibers Every time he would clean a new section of his office he would find piles of fingernail clippings to sweep up This was all very creepy for him but when I told him that the man those clippings belonged to had recently died he nearly came out of his skin Suddenly those annoying nail clippings became eerie reminders of mortality Speaking of mortality ”When the gods felt age beginning to touch them to frost their hair or ache their joints then they would go to Idunn She would open her box and allow the god or goddess to eat a single apple As they ate it their youth and power would return to them Without Idunn’s apples the gods would scarcely be gods” I don’t know about the rest of you but I could use a bite of those Golden Apples I’m not even greedy; just a nibble would be great Even the mighty Thor could be temporarily flummoxed ”There was a giantess in the kitchen cutting up onions as big as boulders and cabbages the size of boats Thor could not help staring the old woman had nine hundred heads each head uglier and terrifying than the last He took a step backward” If you were fighting a monster like this where would you start and where would you end? The stories that Neil Gaiman gathered together here were based on what little was left of the pagan stories of the Norse gods Fortunately a 13th century Icelandic saga writer named Snorri Sturluson recorded these tales in his book Prose Edda Neil Gaiman retold them with his entertaining and illuminating prose Check out the life of Snorri Sturluson when you get the chance He might have written about heroes of old but his life was eually fascinating to read about What stories we have were the tip of the iceberg of the stories that were originally told Wouldn’t it be great if of them were found? The Norse gods were mere shadows of what they were in the past This was a wonderful introduction to Norse Mythology If you know very little about the old gods this would be a great place to start If you have some idea of the Norse legends you would certainly benefit from reading them in Gaiman’s engaging style I even found myself chuckling at several pointsthat Loki kills me every time If you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at


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