Popular Tales from the Norse

  • by George Webbe Dasent
  • Narrated by Daniel Thomas May
  • 13 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This is George Dasent's classic collection of Scandinavian folklore. This is not about Norse mythology per se; so if you are looking for tales of Odin, Loki, and Freya, etc., you will have to look elsewhere. Rather, this is an anthology of folk tales, similar to the Grimm Brothers', or Campbell's Popular Tales of the West Highlands. All of the usual suspects are in place, including giants, trolls, witches, evil step-siblings, magical boons and tasks, and anthropomorphic animals.
The introduction is exceptionally well written, and places various magical and other themes from the tales into the context of ancient Norse Pagan beliefs. It is a Victorian scholarly treatise, however (with the requisite rhetorical flourishes), and will mostly be appreciated by academic listeners. Once you get past the introduction however, the prose descends to the young adult level, and the delightful stories can be appreciated by listeners of all ages.

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Audible Editor Reviews

Daniel Thomas May performs these Popular Tales from the Norse with his warm, slightly gravelly voice, creating amusing personalities for the varying animals, creatures, and characters that populate the tales. His engaging style will charm listeners young and old.
The stories were translated into English by Sir George Webbe Dasent, whose interest in Scandinavian mythology and literature was sparked by a meeting with Jakob Grimm who, along with his brother Wilhelm, collected German folktales into some of the most popular collections of children’s stories ever. These stories similarly reflect a culture’s unique flavor while containing lessons, jokes, dreams, and fears that are universally relatable and enjoyable.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Fun for a while

Of Norwegian ancestry so very interested in the old stories and culture. Stories were fun to hear, but many similar in theme of not story, and some reports in the story itself. I guess if you spent enough time sitting around a fire with family during long winters you would appreciate a long take to pass the time. Overall I liked heading traditional talked, but it was hard to keep interested after the first half of the book when the repetition seemed to overwhelm my interest. I'm supposed I finished it, even after only putting it on for a take or two once every couple of weeks.
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- this game is fun

Good Stories, Some Short, Others Very Long

What other book might you compare Popular Tales from the Norse to and why?

This book reads like a compilation of Aesops Fables...some short, some long, usually with a lesson at the end.


What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

The reader did an adequate job of changing voices for characters...not the best I've heard, but good.


Any additional comments?

The book is simply a compilation of tales or fables, many of them universal, not specific to Norse peoples. But it is a great introduction to Norse culture, if you've never heard it before. My son and I listened to this together. He is twelve and most of the stories were a little too young for him.

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- Amazon Customer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-07-2012
  • Publisher: Audible Studios