8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Entertaining historical fiction of breadth and quality,
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This review is from: The King of Vinland's Saga (Hardcover)If there is a book that can positively dismiss the somewhat stuffy image of interminable Norse Sagas then this could well be it. Having little prior knowledge of this era in history I set about, with a little trepidation, my journey into the lost world of Norse exploration. And was hooked from page one as though I was devouring a quick-read thriller, except Mirsky’s saga is far, far superior in all respects.
For a first novel the author has set himself a huge task, and succeeded, demonstrating an erudite knowledge of the subject combined with a disciplined story-telling ability. The narrative style, although archaic, gives the epic story it’s own momentum and is a refreshing read for it.
Add swash-buckler ingredients; heroic Viking battling with hostile Indian tribes in defense of a more welcoming tribe, the inevitable love interest, jealousy, the later arrival of an adventuring Norwegian ship containing some familiar but unwelcome Kinsmen with competing land claims, and a bloody family feud. Combined with Mirsky’s obvious writing talent what you get is an unusually entertaining historical fiction of breadth and quality that stands, like the Viking men themselves, heads above the dirth of competing novels in this genre. Highly recommended and well done Mr. Mirsky.
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Initial post: 24 Aug 2013 23:32:03 BDT
Last edited by the author on 24 Aug 2013 23:41:07 BDT
R. Conway says:
I'm glad this reviewer liked Stuart Mirsky's book - so do I, very much. But I must protest at his attribution of a stuffy image to the Norse sagas ('dismissing the somewhat stuffy image of interminable Norse Sagas'). Such an image (if it exists in anyone's head) is more likely to be based on a vague misconception and lack of direct experience, I think. May I recommend the Icelandic Family Sagas: set in 10th century Iceland, and written in the 13th century, they are a kind of 10th century axe toting, sheep stealing, blood feuding version of Coronation Street, written about largely historical people and families: They are a lifelong passion of mine and I think this reviewer would greatly enjoy some of them.
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