Cover Image: Norse Mythology

Norse Mythology

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Member Reviews

This is a wonderful book! 
Gaiman arranges the myths into a sort of narrative arc ending with the Twilight of the Gods at Ragnarok. This is well time, with a lot of teens having a surge of interest in Norse mythology thanks to Marvels Thor movies. Gaiman displays his usually deft hand and overabundance of wit with his treatment of these tales. He succeeds in 'knocking the dust off' these stories! The is definitely the version I would suggest for a teen or really anyone who wants a very solid introduction to the Norse pantheon.
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Terse and tense, Neil Gaiman's prose lays out in thrilling terms the stories that are part of old Norse religion. You don't need any particular cultural knowledge to enjoy these tales!
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I originally received access to "Norse Mythology" by way of Netgalley, but being disorganized, and having descended into the pit that is graduate school, I never followed through. Or at least I didn't, until I heard a fantastic interview contrasting Neil Gaiman's work with that of Stephen Fry, who released ":Mythos: A Retelling of the Myths of Ancient Greece" roughly around the same time. I promptly decided I'd been a fool and ordered the audiobook of Gaiman, and completed it in less than two weeks, which is pretty phenomenal given that the only CD player I own lives in my car, and I walk to and from work. I definitely took an unnecessary drive into Missoula just to finish this audiobook, which says a lot for both the material and the presentation.

Now, I happen to like Gaiman and mythologies of all kinds. I know those who don't, and I'm afraid this is not the book to change your mind about anything. Either you like Gaiman and you'll also like this book, or you don't like Gaiman and you'll continue to dislike him afterward. But then, Gaiman is massively popular and doesn't really need new readers, not in the way that a debut author might. So take it or leave it, but don't hold unrealistic expectations ... that's all I'm saying.

I found the windings and weavings between the various chapters of this telling to be particularly effective in a way that many mythologies are not; often enough, a collection of myths is nothing more than that, but here, Gaiman really and truly attempts to give a narrative arc and storytelling form to the tales, and there's a definitely beginning and end point, with a middle that maybe wanders around but still feels as though it's headed *somewhere.* The language is not particularly sophisticated, but this is certainly a treat to listen to in audio despite that, and young readers may find this detail useful, as it bridges the gap beautifully between the recent spate of comic book adaptations into blockbuster films and the original stories, only fragments of which remain.
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Can Neil Gaiman write any genre he chooses?  Obviously yes, and he excels at them all.
His books are intelligent, inspiring questions and debate.  When he writes for children or teens, he doesn't speak down to them or ploy with emotional triggers.
In this book he re-interprets Norse mythology in a way that makes sense to him.  The stories are frightening, occasionally humorous, and addicting.
For lovers of mythology and fantasy, this will be a must read.  Recommended.
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Thank you for the chance to review this book, however, unfortunately, I was unable to read and review this title before it was archived.
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I received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

This took me a long time to get into, until I was able to divorce myself from the idea of it as a nonfiction primer on Norse mythology and view it as a collection of short stories with somewhat familiar characters. There were stories I'd vaguely remembered, stories I'd never heard, and all of it made me dig out D'Aulaire's book of myths.
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An outstanding compilation of ancient myths and legends by one of the most read authors of our time. Gaiman writes wonderfully about the subject of his books and stories. An addition to any Gaiman fan, new or old.
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Neil Gaiman is a God who writes about Gods. It shouldn't be but it works SO GOOD.
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Neil Gaiman delivers every time. I have recommended Norse Mythology without reservation and have been thanked every time.
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Not a huge fan of this book. This was less interesting to me than reading any of his other works including the Sandman graphic novels or children's books like Coraline. What I didn't find in  these stories was Neal Gaiman's unique voice. It felt more like trying to read the original Prose Edda.
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Brilliant. Breathes fresh life into ancient Norse stories.
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Masterful retelling of the old myths. Of course something always gets lost in translation, as it were, but it is sufficiently Gaiman-esque to compensate.
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his is exactly what it says on the cover. It is a book of Norse myths. It was pleasant enough to read, but I am not sure it adds much to the interpretations I've already read. If you don't know much about Norse mythology, you may get more out of it. I didn't find that the characters especially came alive for me, although I did enjoy Thor's prediliction to hitting things to solve most problems. 

The book begins with a description of gods and setting, then gradually moves into stories. You shouldn't expect rigorous scholarship or citations. I think that Gaiman was simply enjoying himself by writing about these myths that he loves. I was left with the affirmation that I like his graphic novels better than his others.
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A solid book, not what I would call ground-breaking; it seems to be a pretty standard retelling of Norse mythology. I think the Gaiman name will help sell copies and get more people interested in the subject!
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It's certainly not a bad book by any means (it's Neil Gaiman; it's going to be good), but I've discovered I'm much more a fan of his kids books than his adults book. This didn't grip me as much as The Graveyard Book or Fortunately, the Milk, but the prose was wonderful.
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Taken from Goodreads.com: In Norse Mythology, Gaiman fashions primeval stories into a novelistic arc that 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 reincarnating Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki, the son of giants, a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator. From Gaiman’s deft and witty prose emerges the gods with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to dupe others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.

I’ve never had the opportunity to advance read one of Mr. Gaiman’s books, so I jumped at the chance when I saw it on Netgalley. Plus it’s about one of my favorite subjects that I have loved since a child, and I could identify with Mr. Gaiman’s similar experience, in regards to the introduction of Norse mythology into his life, in the foreword. His writing is beautiful as it always is and I discovered stories I had never heard before, but I guess I just thought it would be different and a better interpretation because of his past work involving Norse mythology (Odd and the Frost Giants and American Gods). 3-1/2 stars. 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the publishers, WW. Norton & Company on Netgalley, in exchange for my honest review.
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I have tried to read the tales of the Norse gods but usually became distracted by the unfamiliar names and for some reason found the stories inaccessible. We become acquainted with Greek and Roman mythology early in our education but I don't remember being exposed as much to Norse mythology. Yet, I always felt I was missing out on the allusions contained in many of my favorites like Tolkien.  So, I thought, if anyone could make these characters come alive it would be Neil Gaiman, and I knew this was a book I had to read. And, of course, I wasn't disappointed. 

In "Norse Mythology" Gaiman follows the historical arc from creation to the destruction of the world in fire and ice but does so using a playful and light touch as he portrays the strong, but not exactly brilliant, Thor, with his hammer, the troublemaker Loki, along with all the others who dwell in the cold and forbidding northern lands. This is probably not a book for the scholar or serious student of Norse literature but it is an excellent introduction that is a joy to read. The only thing better would be to listen to the audio book read by Gaiman, who is a master storyteller.
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Norse Mythology is…exactly what it says it is. It’s a retelling of the Norse myths with all of the characters and places we grew up with: Odin, Thor, Loki, the Frost Giants, Midgard and Ragnarok. And so many more. Gaiman presents these as a complete story, but each chapter reads like a short story that could stand independently. It’s as much a collection of tales as it is a novel, and I’ve seen it called both in blurbs and reviews. On the face of it, it’s a straightforward presentation of stories that we might already be familiar with. But Gaiman has an ability to write about a thing and really give you a sense of time and place that is both familiar and unique. He’s not just rehashing stories for the sake of it. He has said he feels a deep connection to these stories and as a reader, that really comes across. He’s adding something here and making a real contribution to our long history of story-telling.
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Neil Gaiman makes Norse mythology just a bit brighter and easier to read, despite working with material that doesn't give women much more to do than to wait until someone wants to marry them. I really loved it.
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Nice retelling of Norse mythology using language more accessible than many earlier versions.
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