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Styrbiorn the Strong

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  45 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
E. R. Eddison’s classic saga novel now in paperback—includes for the first time Eddison’s remarkable letter of introduction and his unabridged closing note

Styrbiorn the Strong tells the grand tale of Styrbiorn Olafsson, heir to the Swedish throne and known both for his impressive size and strength and his unruly, quarrelsome nature. Denied his birthright and exiled from S
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Paperback, 264 pages
Published November 29th 2011 by Univ Of Minnesota Press (first published January 1st 1926)
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Henry Sturcke
This novel is about the semi-legendary Viking prince from the 10th century. Named Bjorn at his birth, his quarrelsome nature caused others to add the first syllable “styr-“ to his name; we might say “bothersome Bjorn.” The name was expanded again in his youth by the addition of the epithet “sterki,” the strong; it certainly referred to his prodigious physical strength, but probably his stubborn temperament as well.
In writing it, Eddison, better remembered today as an author of fantasy literature
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Joel Zartman
If you love tales of the lands on the shores of the North Atlantic of old then here is a satisfying one: Styrbiorn the Strong by E.R. Eddison. It was his first novel, apparently, and he himself was dissatisfied with the way it ended, though I was not. I think the ending does not deliver actually what it suggests, but the suggestion was enough for me.

It ends in Valhalla itself.

This novel is in the archaic style and with archaic language (to Eddison none compares for sustained and glorious usage o
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Othy
Aug 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Eddison is fully enamored with the saga style and setting but his work is not merely a telling of a Scandinavian story in saga form but an exploration of the saga form from a more modern (note: not Modern) perspective. The characterization in particular is extremely compelling; Styrbiorn and Sigrid in particular are characters that develop in fascinating ways and have given me a great deal of thought, particularly as they are likened to Sigurd and Brunhild of the Volsunga Saga. Their character, ...more
Mike
Dec 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Eddison's mastery of the language really wowed me in the Worm Oroborus, despite the somewhat juvenile plot and characters. His follow up -- a sort of reconstruction of a saga that should have been, in more poetic language than the usual Icelandic saga, but keeping with the impartial and entirely non-introspective viewpoint of the sagas -- is really excellent. You won't like Styrbiorn all that much, but you'll still be gripped by his tragic saga. Eddison's prose is nothing short of amazing, and h ...more
Gillian
The most exciting part of this book for me was the language. Eddison really did his homework and got the syntax just right as to be comparative with other Nordic/Scandinavian sagas, without sounding like he was translating (which he wasn't). After having read Njalls Saga, one of the oldest Icelandic sagas, I feel better able to make this judgement. The climax is revealed way before the even occurs, so the suspense lies in how the climax of the novel comes to pass. Also in keeping with the saga t ...more
Archie Hamilton
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am really digging these turn of the century writers who unearth the amazing Nordic tales- some of the most kick ass stories relayed with the most exquisite composition I have ever read. Styrbiorn the Strong is an amazing character. I encourage anyone with the slightest interest to chew on some of these masters of the tale telling. We need Styrbiorn the Strong in America.
Jon Garrad
Nov 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When essentially writing fanfiction for his beloved Nordic sagas, Eddison displays a stark and restrained style, bereft of philosophical pontificating; it's about as far from Memison as one could imagine, and barely feels like the work of the same author.
Tom Allman
Nov 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Nordic Deliciousness! Need to track down a copy of the U of Minn. reprint.
J.E.
Jan 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
More powerful writing from Eddison.
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Goodreads Librari...: styrbion the strong cover image 3 13 Mar 23, 2017 08:02AM  
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Eric Rücker Eddison was an English civil servant and author, writing under the name "E.R. Eddison."
More about E.R. Eddison...

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