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The Saga of the People of Laxardal and Bolli Bollason's Tale (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 24 Apr 2008

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (24 April 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014044775X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140447750
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 182,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Some believe that The Saga of the People of Laxardal was written by a woman.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
A man called Ketil Flat-nose, the son of Bjorn Buna,1 was a powerful hersir2 in Norway and came from a prominent family. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Like most of the sagas, this one begin with a few pages of genealogy. Don't get bogged down, just forge on and get to the main story. The translation is superb; it's easy to follow and genuinely enjoyable to read. The style reminds you that this was once told by a story-teller, it has little asides ("after that nothing more is heard about him" ). It also has a lovely mix of the heroic and the trivial. Icelanders in all their finery meet the king of Norway and are showered with gifts, and a few chapters later, needing to build a wall to keep the lambs in is a good enough reason for not attending the althing. This isn't my favorite saga, but it is the best saga translation I have ever come across.
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By Mrs. Vanessa Shaw on 22 Nov. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Got this to read whilst in Iceland.
Enjoyed reading it and relating the story to my location.
The saga is beautifully written and gives an amazing insight to times gone by.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Olds on 27 Nov. 2011
Format: Paperback
If you want to better understand the psyche of Icelanders this would be a good introduction. If you want a good read, ditto.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 5 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
A tale of love, hate, jealousy, ...and revenge 11 Dec. 2009
By Captain Sternn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
In many ways, this is a flagship example of a typical Icelandic Saga.

Here we have a narrative of a multi-generational feud, and how two families came to blows over a minor incident. The violence escalated as each faction vowed to avenge ever-increasing assaults upon their relatives, property, and family prestige.

At the center of it all, is the ill-fated love between Kjartan and Gudrun. Kjartan, a powerful up-and-coming warrior in his youth, sailed off to Norway to seek his fortune in the service of the king. Gudrun, the most glamorous woman in northwestern Iceland, waited some time for Kjartan to return, ...but married Kjartan's best friend Bolli Bollason instead.

Kjartan eventually returned to Iceland, wealthier and with a great reputation earned abroad. Finding Gudrun married, he chose another woman, ...and Gudrun never forgave him!

With the inevitable tensions set, it was all a matter of time before the swords, knives, and axes came out.
Fascinating look back 24 May 2015
By wiredweird - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Icelandic sagas form a fascinating core of Western literature. The intrigues, vendettas, and glorious tales never pall. The generation epics represent not just good stories in themselves, but a look into Norse history. Even filtered through layers of hero worship, magical beliefs, Christian propagandizing, and a rush to get to the good part, some genuine sense of the time and people remains. Keneva Kuntz's translation brings it all to life in modern English, removing the barrier of unfamiliar language between modern readers and the old stories.

So, given their easy accessibility and excitement, I'm grateful that these classics are never taught at high school level. I mean, the characters and plots could easily appeal to kids of that age and could broaden their notions of literature and history. But, in my experience, anything taught in high school becomes repulsive - decades later, I still can't stomach whatever was jammed down my throat back then. I remain grateful that these wonderful stories were spared that treatment, and can still offer enjoyable reading as well as cultural insight.

-- wiredweird
This is one of the greatest icelandic sagas 6 July 2014
By Dr. Gloriana St Clair - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is one of the greatest icelandic sagas. The famed story of Gudrun and her loves is a wonderful read which engages contemporary readers.
Four Stars 9 Aug. 2015
By NANCIE M BROWN - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This read is a wonderful look into the history of the Icelandic culture!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Five Stars 19 July 2014
By Minnie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Great book in barely-used condition. Arrived early. The perfect book for my college class.
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