Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
“When something goes wrong, the first thing I always think is, it is Loki’s fault. It saves a lot of time.”
Norse Mythology is an informative bunch of short myths that are beautifully written. The Gods I thought I knew disappointed me greatly in these tales, however this work was still wonderful to dive into.
Norse Mythology begins with the creation of the nine worlds, delves into the different Gods and their interactions with other creatures in the realms including dwarves and giants. Finishing with Ragnarok. These myths surround Gods we know and love from Marvel movies, including Odin, Thor and our favourite trickster Loki.
Since this is a review, below does contain spoilers, if you haven’t read the book, don’t read any further. You have been warned.
Neil Gaiman’s writing within Norse Mythology was beautiful as he weaved the tales of mythology and connected us with the nine world creation and destruction. All of the short stories were informative and entertaining, although I do believe we saw the real side to the Gods, and a side that I didn’t particularly enjoy.
Norse Mythology took us on a journey from point A to point B like most books, however I found it more of an informational guide of Norse Mythology, rather than a story that was meant to take you on a journey. A journey was taken yes, but it was only specific parts of Norse Mythology included, and not a full tale from start to finish. I think Neil wrote the stories well to keep us entertained, and I enjoyed that everything that happened prior to the last myth weaved in to the finale.
The characters in this story were the ones to surprise me in this book. We’ve all watched Marvel movies and we all have seen Thor’s arrogance in the beginning but loved him anyway, and Loki’s deception. However, the Gods in this novel were a lot more selfish and deceptive than I would of imagined. Odin and the Gods made bets that they couldn’t keep, and sabotaged when they couldn’t risk losing what they had bargained. I found it disappointing that these are the likes of Gods and they were not bigger than this bullshit. Their competitive natures were on display, and honestly the only character I loved seeing over and over again was Loki. Loki is so dynamic, he can be a hero but he can be the worst villain and I absolutely love it.
Overall, I enjoyed Norse Mythology. I think it was a beautiful written book of Myths, but I did have some problems. I would pick this one up if you are looking for entry level information on Norse Mythology and I definitely will be picking up more of Neil’s works.
Favourite Quote: ‘Of course it was Loki. It’s always Loki.’
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