Fans of Neil Gaiman rejoice! His masterful stories have always held a soft spot for myths and legends, some more evident than others, but here Gaiman turns his attention to one of those sources in his re-telling of ancient Norse mythology. All of your favorites are here, from Odin, the wise and shrewd all-father, his son Thor, strong and honorable if not the sharpest knife in the drawer, Freya, beautiful and passionate, and Loki, ultimate trickster who both saves the gods time and again, yet is also their downfall.
The Norse myths themselves are vivid, engaging tales, but Gaiman adds humor, not to mention a familiarity with their struggles. Their competitive natures provide endless tales of pranks, rivalries, and bets that are both grand in scale yet human in their susceptibilities. Norse Mythology begins with the birth of the nine worlds, and ends with the battle of Ragnarok, in which Thor fights the great sea serpent Jormungand, and Loki fights on the side of the undead against the gods. But my favorite stories are the exploits of the dwarves and the giants, including how Thor receives his magical hammer, Mjoellnir, with it’s too-short handle.
As instructed in the introduction, these stories are for everyone. If you find yourself in front of a crackling fire on a cold winter night among friends, make the tales your own for the telling.
Recommended for fans of ancient mythology and those interested in looking for a place to start!
“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 he went to ask Loki for advice.”