Customer Reviews for

Grendel

Average Rating 3.5
( 204 )
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5 Star

(57)

4 Star

(45)

3 Star

(44)

2 Star

(31)

1 Star

(27)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

A reviewer

I found this book quite confusing. But i am only in 8th grade. The only reason I read this book was because it was on my sister's summer reading list, and she is a senior in high school. Even for not understanding it, i could tell that this was an excellent book. It was...
I found this book quite confusing. But i am only in 8th grade. The only reason I read this book was because it was on my sister's summer reading list, and she is a senior in high school. Even for not understanding it, i could tell that this was an excellent book. It was very well writen. It was also nice to read a book from the villen's point of view. I've always read stories from the hero's perspective, and it was a pleasent change to read the story from the outcast's view. This book was extremly good.

posted by Anonymous on August 5, 2006

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Slow and confusing

John Gardner had a creative idea to write the book to let readers see life through Grendel's eyes. However, the book was very long and dragged out. There wasn't a lot of action and fighting scenes as I had expected there to be. It was confusing how Gardner would jump ba...
John Gardner had a creative idea to write the book to let readers see life through Grendel's eyes. However, the book was very long and dragged out. There wasn't a lot of action and fighting scenes as I had expected there to be. It was confusing how Gardner would jump back and forth between flashbacks and current events.

posted by SBuerk on December 11, 2011

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  • Posted January 23, 2012

    Not bad, fast read

    In John Gardner's Grendel, Gardener tells the story of Grendel from the monsters view. Having read Beowulf, it was nice to get another perspective of Grendel. Grendel offers great detail into his life and the lives of the other characters from the origanl Beowulf. If your interested in reading this book, I suggest you do. It will help paint another view of what we all have come to think as the HORRIBLE MONSTER GRENDEL.

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  • Posted January 19, 2012

    too confusing

    This was a confusing story! At points i would go pages without understanding what was going on. Though it was confusing, it was also very interesting. I enjoyed hearing about how Grendel felt about things. It made me feel more sympathetic towards the monster.

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  • Posted January 18, 2012

    Not Recommended

    I can't say I enjoyed reading John Gardner's, Grendel considering everytime I picked it up I fell asleep. Compared to Beowulf, it was much less interesting. Beowulf was thrilling and action packed as Grendel was just lacking in anything to hook my attention. Even if you enjoyed Beowulf you won't necessarily enjoy this book.

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  • Posted January 13, 2012

    Confusing but interesting

    I found the point of view intriguing after reading Beowulf. The story wasn't written well enough to keep my attention though, or keep me on the edge of my seat, unable to put it down. Parts were confusing but all in all a good story.

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  • Posted January 12, 2012

    Good book.

    Overall, I thought this was a great book. Similar to how The Lion King 1 1/2 gives a second point of view to the original story, "Grendel" tells the story of "Beowulf" from the eyes of Grendel. Behind all the killing and destroying resides a rational and literate being trying to find the meaning of life.

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  • Posted January 12, 2012

    Good for the Twisted!

    I think the novel Grendel is initially confusing, so i recommend you read "Beowolf" before reading Grendel. Seeing life through a monsters eyes is action packed and is great for all people wanting to read a twisted but meaningful book. Overall, Its a good read. *****

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2012

    Confusing and Unnecessary

    Whilst suffering through a dreadful read of Gardner's Grendel I struggled to find any strong aspect of the book to connect to. I felt like the character of Grendel is not one that needed to be strung in a 150-page snore-fest. Personally I like to consider myself a philosophical bibliophile, Machiavelli, Marx, Plato, Aristotle, and others occupy my bookshelf and the ideas presented in the novel, that are brought to flesh by Grendel, are contaminated by the creativity of the author mixing with the philosophy of the author. I would have much rather preferred to read a novel about his mother's deceit or of Hrothgar's adventures.

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  • Posted January 10, 2012

    okay but hard to follow

    Grendel is a novel written by John Gardener that reverses the epic novel Beowolf. This novel tells the life of the moster grendel living in society. When i first started reading this book i enjoyed it but soon into the novel i became confused. I found the book hard to follow and noticed i was often lost. The idea of grendel is good but it should be made more clear.

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  • Posted January 6, 2012

    its alright

    John Gardner does a decent job of telling the story of Grendel. I thought the book really helped to understand the character of Grendel but was not really the most interesting thing to read. Throughout the book there was not much excitement in my opinion. I thought Gardner tried to make Grendel more of an actual person rather than the monster that he was in the original tale of Beowulf. Overall the book was not terrible but i don't think i can say i would recommend it to a friend. The book is well written just lacks something that really captures the reader and makes you want to keep reading.

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    Weird book-read if you want a few good laughs

    This twist to the famous legend of Beowulf provides a look into the life of the seemingly evil and heartless Grendel. This story however shows that Grendel is very sad, lonely, and emits feelings those who read Beowulf wouldn't think possible. Whether it's staring down a goat or throwing apples this book finds the weirdest ways to retrieve laughs from the reader. If possible I would recommend avoiding this book at any cost.

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    Interesting in points

    I thought this book was a very interesting take on the monster vs society and how people react to things we don't consider the "norm." Although, the idea of the book was very good and the philosophical aspects of the story really draw the reader in, the story also has several confusing flashbacks and occassionally Grendel jumps subjects too quickly and drastically. Overall I found it an interesting read and I definitely reccommend to anyone who is into fantasy stories.

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    NO SWAGG

    This book was not all that great. I had a very hard time trying to understand it. It was also very boring. I don't really like books in this genre but this was just awful. I think I understood the story better when we were reading the epic, Beowulf.

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    Interesting and different read. Recommended.

    It may be difficult to settle in this book from the beginning. The start of this book is fast and you are given a lot to digest. After reading a couple chapters into it, it becomes easier to catch on to what is going on, it is a very interesting take on Grendel's life and is a must if you love Beowulf.

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  • Posted January 2, 2012

    Try it.

    John Gardners tale of the epic story of Beowulf through Grendel's Point of view is a refreshing follow up after reading Beowulf. I found the story insightful and helpful in understanding the actions of Grendel. The book was not chalked filled with excitement like that of its counterpart Beowulf, which should be evaluated before reading. A large part of the story is spent by Gardner developing Grendel not as a monster but as a more philosophical and intellectual being. All in all I found the book an interesting piece of literature and entertaining.

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  • Posted January 2, 2012

    Great idea, lacking execution

    Josh Gardner presents the epic story of Beowulf from Grendal, the villain's, point of view. This is a very intriguing idea, but I was less than impressed after reading this novel. Gardner explores the ideas of existentialism through the thoughts and flashbacks of a very conflicted character. I believe Gardner had all the right components to make this story great, but he simply did not execute in his writing. In my opinion, Gardner's writing was choppy and boring. Effectively making a statement about existentialism is challenging if the story does not keep the audiences attention. It is a shame that such an interesting concept was wasted on this book.

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  • Posted January 1, 2012

    Creative but not the best

    While Gardner had good intentions, he couldn't quite bring it out. I love stories told from other vantage points but this didn't quite meet my expectations. There wasn't enough action, or a plot really. A little too random and confusing for me. There were some good parts but it was filled in with boring nothingness that couldn't keep my attention. I'd recommend this book to people looking for a long, confusing story about a hopeless monster. If it's your cup of tea go for it, otherwise I wouldn't bother.

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  • Posted December 16, 2011

    Very interesting

    I¿m not a big fan of Beowulf, so this book wasn¿t that great either but it was interesting. Hearing Grendel¿s viewpoint changed the way I thought about the whole Beowulf story. I think knowing the enemy¿s of the story is key to understanding the plot of any heroic tale. I give Gardener props for being the one to create such a detailed and mind bending story.

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  • Posted December 12, 2011

    Recommended-very interesting so check it out

    I would have loved to have known about how confusing some of the detail would be in the novel before buying this book, but it wasn't too bad. I recommend this book to people looking for something very different than a normal novel of regular humans because it, instead, gives more fictional creatures that make the novel a bit more interesting. The monster character of Grendel that's created shows a different point of view than the story of Beowulf. It shows Grendel more as an animal killing to survive instead of a huge monster just killing to kill, and it is a very creative story overall.

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  • Posted December 12, 2011

    Hear the story from Grendel's side-definitely worth a shot

    Grendel was very challenging to start, but once the story picked up there were moments of happiness, guilt, regret, remorse, and laughter. The book really packs a punch and makes you step outside of the thoughts provoked by the poem "Beowulf." Grendel becomes a much more complex character, but it is very text heavy for the story trying to be told. It could easily be shortened, but at the same time I feel like the extra paragraphs about randomness help you understand the confusion in Grendel's mind at all times.

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  • Posted December 12, 2011

    Makes you think!

    I enjoyed reading John Gardner's novel Grendel. It was fun and interesting to explore the story of Beowulf through the eyes of his enemy. Gardner provides the reader with a new prospective, helping to open their mind to walking in the shoes of the enemy instead of the hero. In Gardner's novel, Grendel is shown to be more human-like than he was in "Beowulf." I recommend this novel to anyone who had read or enjoyed the original; it is nice to see the other side of the story as opposed to just one point of view.

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