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The Long Ships
     

The Long Ships

4.3 24
by Frans G. Bengtsson, Michael Meyer, Michael Chabon
 

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Frans Gunnar Bengtsson’s The Long Ships resurrects the fantastic world of the tenth century AD when the Vikings roamed and rampaged from the northern fastnesses of Scandinavia down to the Mediterranean. Bengtsson’s hero, Red Orm—canny, courageous, and above all lucky—is only a boy when he is abducted from his Danish home by the Vikings

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Long Ships 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is truly my favorite book of all time, and I am looking forward to reading it again. Unfortunately I loaned my tattered old copy to a "friend" fifteen years ago and that was the last I ever saw of it. Orm is a character like no other in modern fiction, and I hope Chabon makes note of that in his introduction. I have tried many times over the years to explain to people why I love this book so much, but it seems to escape me. Even now I am torn about writing this review: should I share this great book with you or is it something that is so personal that it is beyond words? This book is a rare treasure in 20th century publishing; buy it and read it, again and again!
ArghArgh More than 1 year ago
I first read The Long Ships 20 years ago, after it was recommended by a European friend of mine. It was largely unavailable, and I ended up having to order it from England. It is an epic tale of a young viking boy grown up to a man, told in a humorous, delightful, and remarkable fashion. It is simply one of the finest pieces of literature ever produced. I have an extensive library, yet this is the ONLY book that I reserve a special tradition for. I read it every year between Thanksgiving and Christmas, as a treat to myself. I am very happy that it is in publication again, so that a broader audience may finally access this masterpiece. Now if they'd only make it for the Nook so that I can keep my rare copies from becoming even more tattered!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was given a copy in English translation (originally Swedish) by my Swedish grandfather for my 12th birthday. Like Treasure Island, it is as enjoyable now as it was those 25 years ago - and not because it has revealed new meaning or taken on a greater metaphorical significance as I approach it now from a more sophisticated perspective. Just the opposite in fact. It is a monolithic piece of writing which tells THE tale of viking adventure with a type of patient intensity that is seldom chosen by modern writers. Part saga, part thriller, the story will seem familiar. Not because it plays to stereotypes or because it is the progenitor of a Hollywood viking archetype, but because it communes on an almost primal level with the yearning for adventure and discovery in all of us. Can I recommend it? I would actually go as far as to say that any reader is somehow incomplete without it. It really may be the greatest book you have never heard of.
LordVader More than 1 year ago
I bought this upon recommendation by one of B&N critics and what a page turner it was. Bengtsson describes a fantastic yet matter-of-fact world of murderers, thieves, rapists, and slavers, AKA the Vikings, where such people are those who prosper and strangely enough it seems like the natural order of things. I am not quite how to best say this, but the characters in the story weren't 20th or 21st century American minds in the bodies of characters living a 1,000 years ago, but rather those people translated for me. Wonderful workmanship.
Anonymous 4 days ago
The story of Orm and his adventures is a fun read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
RalfK More than 1 year ago
I will have to disagree with the 5-star reviewers who absolutely adore this book. I found it to be tedious and long and do not know what others found so enchanting about primative thies,rapists,plunderers and murderers, It is written beautifully, but grtd tiresome. The book was given to Michael Chabon by his Danish aunt who bought rt it at an airport. Mr. Chabon writes a hyper--enthusiastic introduction to this book, which was published by the New York Review of Books. If you enjoy reading about the Crusader-barbarians, you might like this book. 
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