Summary

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Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 168

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman is a book that collects several myths from the old Norse tradition and reworks them into a more readable translation for most readers. Gaiman does not translate old tales, but he does rewrite them in a way which makes them easier for the average reader to follow and enjoy.

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Gaiman's prior interest in Norse mythology led him to read the two Edda's which are collections of stories that were likely transmitted orally in Iceland. These collections include the legends of the beginning of the world and the legend of Ragnarok, among many other tales involving the Norse gods. Gaiman selected several of these legends, including the legend of Thiazi, the legend of the creation of Mjollnir, the legend of Thor's marriage, etc. and wrote them in a style reminiscent of fairy tales. They are rather sparse in style but convey the central information perfectly. Gaiman's collections appears to lock the stories into a timeline, though he does not state this as a goal.

Summary

Download PDF Print Page Citation Share Link

Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 154

Norse Mythology, a 2017 novel written by Neil Gaiman, was inspired by Gaiman's own interests in Norse Mythology. In this novel, Gairman spins old-fashioned tales into a work of his own.

In his story, Gaiman begins by telling about the nine worlds common in Norse Mythology. He spends time discussing the various gods and other mythological creatures such as giants and dwarfs. He dwells on three main characters of Norse Mythology: Odin, Thor, and Loki. Odin is Thor's father. Thor is very strong but not very wise. Loki is an enemy to Thor and often tricks him due to his cunning.

In this novel, Gaiman goes on to explain several events in Norse Mythology, such as how a wall was built for Odin by the giants after they were tricked, how Thor and Loki interact with an ogre who stole Mjollnir (Thor's hammer), and other stories in which the gods appear more human than godly.

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Themes