Kevin Crossley-Holland caught my attention whilst doing some research for the Finvaard Series I am writing. The series is based heavily on Norse Mythology so I spent a long time reading old legends, myths and folk tales. Kevin is noted for his translations and retellings of many Scandinavian texts and the book I review in a moment has been extremely influential in shaping the story and events of the series.
On researching this author I have discovered that he has also written poetry, and fiction for children. His Arthur Trilogy, based on the mythology surrounding King Arthur and the knights of the round table, won the Guardian Children’s Book Prize.
The Penguin Book of Norse Myths:Gods of the Vikings
Kevin retells the full Scandinavian myth cycle of the Gods from their creation through to Ragnarok. The tales that survive often conflict slightly or exist in varying forms. Kevin has compiled them in chronological order in a way that makes sense. He retells the stories with detailed notes to refer to and a glossary of important names and places. All these little details really help to come to grips with a confusing and fragmented mythology. If you are interested in Norse mythology then this book is ideal to set a firm foundation and understanding in the field.