Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
Published: February 2017 by Bloomsbury Publishing
Gaiman uses simple language to tell these stories but they are deeply compelling and evocative nonetheless. Old as these tales are – and well known to me – his simple, elegant words paint new and vivid pictures in my mind. Thor with his red beard and comic stupidity; beautiful, haughty Freya… and Loki – who “makes the world more interesting but less safe”.
There’s a lot of humour and lightheartedness in these myths but the whole mood is somewhat darkened by Gaiman’s prophecy of Ragnarok:
“This will be the age of cruel winds, the age of people who become as wolves, who prey upon each other, who are no better than wild beasts. Twilight will come to the world, and the places where the humans live will fall into ruins, flaming briefly, then crashing down and crumbling into ash and devastation”
I found this passage eerily familiar. Are we now living through the end times? Is Ragnarok almost upon us?…
I devoured this book like a wolf devouring the moon. Neil Gaiman’s reputation as a Bard of Epic Standing is now assured in my opinion. Highly recommended.