Ensiform's Reviews > The Children of Odin: The Book of Northern Myths

The Children of Odin by Padraic Colum
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's review
Jan 29, 12

bookshelves: fiction, mythology
Read in August, 2003

A retelling of the Norse myths, with the story of Sigurd and Brynhild, the fallen Valkyrie, as well as the stories of the Aesir. This telling is a bit more in-depth than the D’Aulaires’ work; it gives a reasonable account, for one thing, why Loki turned from merely spiteful and mischievous to jealous, destructive and evil. It also lends more import to the Norse motif that destruction came to the Aesir because of unjust acts they committed. It isn’t perfect though — unless I’m mistaken, Colum fails to explain how Odin went from giving his eye to Mimir in return for wisdom to owning the well itself, as well as Mimir’s head. And he throws in titles like “Asa Thor” without explaining them, or giving the literal meanings of the names, which are often insightful. Still, as a book for older juveniles, it works well: Colum weaves the myths into a book-length story, and writes with a poet’s flair.

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