Customer Reviews for

The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun

Average Rating 4
( 36 )
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5 Star

(17)

4 Star

(9)

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(4)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(4)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

Wonferful insight into a facinating time and place.

Poetic eddas have long caused me to wish that I had taken up the study of the Old Norse language when I was younger. Tolkien shows his brilliance in this book, both as a linguist and storyteller, communicating both the intensity of the story and the wonderful constructi...
Poetic eddas have long caused me to wish that I had taken up the study of the Old Norse language when I was younger. Tolkien shows his brilliance in this book, both as a linguist and storyteller, communicating both the intensity of the story and the wonderful construction of language. Written before the epic trilogy for which he is famous, this book shows us how gifted Tolkien truly was, with language and folklore.

posted by 166392 on March 10, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

One of Tolkien's more academic titles, the two expermental poems offered in this volume can be hard to follow, but the parts that work are very strong.

J.R.R. Tolkien The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún. May 2009. 377p. ed. by Christopher Tolkien. illus. ISBN 978-0-547-27342-6. $26. LIT
Yet another posthumous title by Tolkien (between writing this much and teaching full time when did he sleep?), this is one of his mo...
J.R.R. Tolkien The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún. May 2009. 377p. ed. by Christopher Tolkien. illus. ISBN 978-0-547-27342-6. $26. LIT
Yet another posthumous title by Tolkien (between writing this much and teaching full time when did he sleep?), this is one of his more scholarly outputs. Written before his popular Middle-earth creations, the two full poems presented here are based on the old Norse legends that heavily influenced those later works. There are no hobbits or elves, but readers will find plenty of familiar trappings and the feel is much the same. Son Christopher, who has edited 15 of his father's posthumous publications, provides lengthy commentaries on both poems, which greatly help to grasp the narrative, for as he states in the intro these "are not at all points easy to follow" (Beowulf is Dr. Seuss compared to some of this). These poems were experimental writings for Tolkien, and not entirely successful, yet the parts that work are strong. Much like his marvelous The Children of Húrin, this is dark; there are murders, suicides, and betrayals aplenty. Though the average hobbit head might find this too academic, a new book by Tolkien is always warmly welcomed. Recommended.-Mike Rogers, LJX/LJ

posted by MikeRogers on May 4, 2009

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  • Posted May 4, 2009

    One of Tolkien's more academic titles, the two expermental poems offered in this volume can be hard to follow, but the parts that work are very strong.

    J.R.R. Tolkien The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún. May 2009. 377p. ed. by Christopher Tolkien. illus. ISBN 978-0-547-27342-6. $26. LIT
    Yet another posthumous title by Tolkien (between writing this much and teaching full time when did he sleep?), this is one of his more scholarly outputs. Written before his popular Middle-earth creations, the two full poems presented here are based on the old Norse legends that heavily influenced those later works. There are no hobbits or elves, but readers will find plenty of familiar trappings and the feel is much the same. Son Christopher, who has edited 15 of his father's posthumous publications, provides lengthy commentaries on both poems, which greatly help to grasp the narrative, for as he states in the intro these "are not at all points easy to follow" (Beowulf is Dr. Seuss compared to some of this). These poems were experimental writings for Tolkien, and not entirely successful, yet the parts that work are strong. Much like his marvelous The Children of Húrin, this is dark; there are murders, suicides, and betrayals aplenty. Though the average hobbit head might find this too academic, a new book by Tolkien is always warmly welcomed. Recommended.-Mike Rogers, LJX/LJ

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2012

    Wonferful insight into a facinating time and place.

    Poetic eddas have long caused me to wish that I had taken up the study of the Old Norse language when I was younger. Tolkien shows his brilliance in this book, both as a linguist and storyteller, communicating both the intensity of the story and the wonderful construction of language. Written before the epic trilogy for which he is famous, this book shows us how gifted Tolkien truly was, with language and folklore.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Must For Tolkein Fans

    I've been a fan of J. R. R. Tolkein since I first picked up a copy of "The Hobbit" in the base library where I was stationed in the USAF in 1970. It started out as simple curiosity of the subject to a 39 year love affair with all of his books. So it was a real treat to find this book and I ordered it without hesitation. If you like Tolkein's books of high fantasy, you like Icelandic/Norse sagas since his books are based on them. Here is a book of an Icelandic saga actually composed by Tolkein and it is is worthy to occupy shelf space of every Tolkein fan.

    As was mentioned, the saga is a bit hard to read but so are the actual sagas themselves. Fortunately for the nonscholars out there, the author's son Christopher Toklein has provided copious notes that make the reading much easier as well as providing the history behind the Icelandic sagas and the writing of Tolkein's own version of them.

    This book has renewed my interest in Icelandic and Norse sagas and I am sure I will be rereading this book very soon.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 26, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Beowulf Lite Entertains/Fascinates

    We've all heard references to Icelandic sagas, usually in a positive way, but most of us who are not opera fans have seen more meteor showers than actual Icelandic sagas. This book provides a great opportunity to see what all the fuss is about.

    The plot is both quick hitting and complicated, a rare feat to pull off absent epic poetic conventions. It is also herioc, in a tragic way that civilized centuries will find stark. Like great barbecue, one can be so taken with the quality of the meat and the feasting experience that it is easy to overlook the subtle spice mixture in the sauce or the patient application of smoke. This is a page turner, but you will still find yourself going back to review nuances that fill out the characters and the original saga writer's view of this tearful vale in which we live.

    The lines are much shorter than most epic poetry, including its closest cousin Beowulf. It almost reads like rap, and every word seems to bear great meaning.

    A worthwile way to experience a long-lost millenium and the unique world view of the Norse peoples. The subtle weaving of Christian ideas in a mythology ill-suited to handle it is also fascinating. One can sense that belief was there, but not orthodox understanding, and the tension between the traditional story line and these newer ideas inspires curiousity.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 23, 2009

    Definitely interesting

    I'm a huge fan of Tolkien so I had to at least try and read this book. It was hard for me to pronounce a lot of the words but I kept at it! I did really like the stories and was able to get the most of it. I also like the historical aspect of the book because of the stories written and the explanations (which really helped!)about them. I would recommend this for anyone who does enjoy literature and has the time and patients to read it and takes the time to understand them.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2009

    We weren't expecting it to be in Poem form.

    If you like Tolkein, you'll enjoy it.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    Want a free ipad

    Kiss your hand three times and then post this comment on three different books then look under your pillow

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2014

    Qwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnm

    Dat ass. Dat mudda fuggin ass.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2013

    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    Puts the bling in amazing

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2013

    DdddtsfzdzFffxffgcfggggggvggggggggggccccfffvc cggggggvgg

    Hunger games

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    beautiful

    i just loved it, great stories retold by a great author!

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  • Posted December 21, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A brilliant retelling of the Volsung saga

    The terse, alliterative Norse style poetry by J. R. R. Tolkien was brilliantly done in this retelling of the tragic story of Sigurd and Gudrun. Interestingly, for all of Tolkien's insistence that he prefers the pagan, pre-Christian version of the myth, he gives Sigurd some elements of a Christ character that are not in the original. Some of the commentary by Christopher Tolkien seemed tedious and unnecessary, but I'm still giving this 5 stars for the sake of the poetry.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    this book is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    amazing from begining to the very end!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Posted July 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    a pretty easy read for anybody who likes myth and high fantasy

    great book by j r r tolkien i loved this book the best its right up with both the hobbit and the lord of the rings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Posted July 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    amazing from begining to the very end!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    awesome from begining to the very end!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted January 4, 2010

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    Posted December 22, 2009

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    Posted December 29, 2009

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    Posted December 28, 2009

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    Posted January 23, 2010

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