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The Gospel of Loki

(Loki #1)

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  9,040 ratings  ·  1,538 reviews
The novel is a brilliant first-person narrative of the rise and fall of the Norse gods - retold from the point of view of the world's ultimate trickster, Loki. It tells the story of Loki's recruitment from the underworld of Chaos, his many exploits on behalf of his one-eyed master, Odin, through to his eventual betrayal of the gods and the fall of Asgard itself.
Paperback, 302 pages
Published August 14th 2014 by Gollancz (first published February 13th 2014)
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3.71  · 
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 ·  9,040 ratings  ·  1,538 reviews


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Kathylill
Dec 09, 2013 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
I mean seriously LOKI? I've been waiting ages for a book like this.
I am fangirling so hard right now.

Amalia Gavea
''They tell you revenge isn't worth it. I say there's nothing finer.''

When a writer makes an effort to compose a story out of all the different well-loved myths about the deities of Norse Mythology, putting the Trickster at the heart of the narration, and having him confessing all the crimes he has committed in all their evil glory, then it deserves no less than a fairly positive review. The result is a fascinating work, able to transport the reader into Asgard and the whole Nine Worlds, but n
...more
Blair
The first fantasy novel from Joanne Harris, The Gospel of Loki is a brilliantly entertaining retelling of Norse mythology. As the title suggests, it's all seen through the eyes of the god of mischief, Loki, who relates his own version of events in a wonderfully unpredictable, unreliable and humorous voice. It's part 21st-century update - Loki's narration is very modern - and part faithful reconstruction - the book presents the world of these myths as it was originally told, and as a very real ex ...more
Lucy Hounsom
The Gospel of Loki is a retelling of some of the stories that comprise Old Norse mythology. The Elder Edda and Prose Edda (themselves influences on Tolkien) seem to be Harris’ major source materials here. They contain original versions of the anecdotes that feature in The Gospel of Loki, and I will admit, it was fun to revisit those escapades from Loki’s point of view.

But here comes a niggle: in the style of most surviving mythological texts, The Gospel of Loki is narrated with a certain omnisci
...more
Miranda
Jun 07, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Recommended to Miranda by: Satan.
New review 6/8/15:

I couldn't do it, y'all. I made it through 114 pages of this shit show before I decided I'd rather deal with a yeast infection than subject myself to more of this travesty.

Not only does Harris change a lot of details in confusing ways (Loki's a demon, not a Jotun, and comes from Pandaemonium, not Muspelheim? What?) but the book itself is just shallow. I realize Harris was trying to emulate the feeling of Loki telling the story directly, but you can do that and still give you s
...more
Liz


What do we have here?
A whole lot of sarcasm, the most unreliable narrator of all time, an alternative view on the Norse mythology and a quite a lot of epicness in addition.

As somebody who has to do a presentation on the "Prophecy of the Oracle" next week I couldn't have chosen a better book for this month. One of my majors is Scandinavian Studies so I can't rate this book objectively. I have always been enamored with the Norse myths, the legends, the gods and the most popular trickster of all
...more
Cinda
I truly enjoyed this rewrite of the Edda from the point of view of Loki. So, shoot me. I've always been a fan of the antihero. While I cannot approve of everything that Loki did, he comes off the page as genuinely sympathetic and, dare I say -- human? The fact is, nobody in the Norse pantheon of gods comes across as admirable. In that regard, Loki fits in very well.
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum http://bibliosanctum.com/2015/05/08/b...

It’s been so many years since I read Chocolat, that for all intents and purposes The Gospel of Loki may as well be the first book I’ve ever read by Joanne Harris. Highly entertaining and original, this novel chronicles the epic rise of the Norse gods all the way through to the coming of Ragnarok, completely retold from the point of view of none other than the trickiest trickster of them all – Loki.

First thing you should kn
...more
Phrynne
Jan 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4000-books
I spent the whole of this book visualising Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddlestone in their roles of Thor and Loki. I think it added to my reading pleasure!
I really liked Ms Harris's original take on the story of the Norse gods and especially Loki. Of course as a known trickster and liar Loki must be the most unreliable narrator ever and we have to assume that it may not be a strictly accurate retelling. However it is a fun one and Loki is quite ready to admit to his failings as well as his successe
...more
Gabrielle
So shoot me : I have a weakness for the bad guys… And frankly, every book I’ve ever read about Norse mythology seems to be driven by the fact that writers everywhere are crushing just as hard as I am on Loki… Maybe because he is the most complex “god” of the Norse pantheon, or maybe because he is just plain fun to read (and I assume, write) about. One of the things that I love most about Loki is that he is the agent of change, he stirs the pot and shakes the other gods out of their comfortable r ...more
Amanda
Jun 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It seems that history hasn't remembered Loki--the trickster god, father of lies, wildfire, chaos incarnate--kindly. Now, after Ragnarok has brought an end to the rule of Odin, Loki finds himself with plenty of time on his hands--and he's using that time to set the record straight.

In a witty, anachronistic voice, Loki retells the famous myths of Norse mythology from his perspective, highlighting how he was a victim of fate and a necessary counterbalance to Order (indeed, Odin pulled him out of C
...more
Arielle Walker
I have always loved the Norse myths. This love has even survived being made, age ten, to re-enact the saga of Thor and the giants. As this involved stomped around on wooden stilts (we were giants obviously) in a linen tunic chanting something like "We are great and men are sods, we will conquer men and gods" ad infinitum, it's amazing that I would want to revisit anything that brings back such memories. But no, Viking lore and Norse mythology remains as intriguing as ever, and this new book by J ...more
Aqsa (On Hiatus)
Mar 12, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Aqsa (On Hiatus) by: Mary S. R.
Highly recommended by Mary!
Kaora
Jan 29, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good-fantasy
I haven't read a lot of Mythology books. It is not a lack of interest, it's more that I did not know which books were good. So I came into this book with very little knowledge of Norse Mythology other than what I know from Thor (the movie). And while this book packs in a lot of information in under 300 pages, Loki tells his story with a lot of wit, making it an interesting read.

...a handsome young man named Honor (nicknamed 'The Silent' in the hope tat one day he might take the hint)

"Oww! That w
...more
Heidi The Reader
Joanne M. Harris treats readers to episodes from Norse mythology from Loki's point of view.

"No doubt about it, I told myself. These bastards really don't like me." pg 27

Born from literal Chaos and tricked into joining Odin's forces of Order, Loki is perpetually a child of both worlds. From his first moments out of the world of Chaos, Loki is disliked by the other gods. That leads to some initial unpleasantness and he vows, no matter how long it takes, to get his revenge.

"Till then, I bided my ti
...more
Sud666
Oct 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
"The General (Odin) didn't know it then, but what he needed was a friend whose morals were flexible enough to handle the moral low ground while Odin lorded it on high, keeping Order, untouchable...
Basically, he needed me."

There was once a "Prophecy of the Oracle" as told to Odin Allfather by the head of Mimir the Wise. This is the story of the rise and fall of Asgard. Many are familiar with the events but this time there is a slight change. This version of the Oracle, if not the whole tale, is c
...more
Carien
Nov 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This book is so good!

I've always wondered why Loki is painted as plain evil most of the time, while his Shakespearian alter ego Puck gets to keep the ambiguous status that, in my opinion, is the heart of Loki: neither good or bad, he's chaos after all. He's trickster, prankster and even a bit of a clown.

Harris understands this perfectly and shows Loki as I see him. Her writing is both fun and funny and even while a lot of the stories were familiar for me, I enjoyed reading them and seeing them
...more
Emma
Sep 29, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't know much about Norse mythology when I picked up this book but this was an enjoyable way to learn a little more.. The rise and fall of Loki, the trickster, born from Chaos, who lies and irritates the Hel out of, well everyone! This is a clever take, Loki tells us his version of events in a memorable voice. The book reads as a series of episodes rather than a single narrative, the chapters were short and it was easy to both pick the book up and put it down. Perfect for a quick break / re ...more
Mimi
Jan 21, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mimi by: SFFBC January 2019
Shelves: fantasy, 2019, mythology
3.5 stars

If this book were to have a tagline, it should be sympathy for the devil because this is Loki's story and you can't help but feel for him. Or at least I did. The story unfolds with snide first-person narration from Loki's caustic point of view, beginning from the moment Odin pulled him from Chaos to the moment he might or might not have brought down Asgard. (Is that too spoilery? I can never tell, especially when it comes to reviewing retellings of well known mythology...)

Before I get i
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The Shayne-Train
This is one of those books that should have been a five-star. I love Loki, both in Marvel and in Norse deity Aspect. I love the stories of Norse mythology. I love unreliable narrators. I love "this is MY side of the story" narratives.

So why didn't this blow me away? I can't really explain it. Maybe my own head-place?

Well, I liked it, anyway. And that's what a three-star review means. So that's what it gets. So shoot me.
Damian Dubois
Dec 12, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Having seen this on a list of books to be released early 2014 back in December last year, The Gospel of Loki was definitely on my much anticipated 'to-read' list. However, the name of the author, Joanne M. Harris, didn't ring any bells and it was only after looking her up that I realised she was the one behind the movie Chocolat. Can't say I've seen it, is it any good...?

Basically put, this is a retelling of old Norse Mythology but rather than being the officially authorised Prophecy of the Orac
...more
TL
Mar 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was really excited going into this book and It didn't disappoint:-)

Loki's voice cane through loud and clear;-) I loved seeing his point of view on the myths (specially the part of Thor in the wedding dress).. several times i got odd looks cause i was shaking my head and laughing at multiple parts.

Loki is a fascinating character... so many sides to him and yes I do love Tom hiddleston portraying him but the more i read separately from the marvel films, the more fascinated I became..

loved how ea
...more
Michael
If you’ve been on the internet (especially Tumblr) in the last few years, chances are that you would know who Loki is. Popularised by Marvel Comics and the recent Thor movies Loki is originally found in Norse mythology. Joanne Harris, best known for novels like Chocolat and Five Quarters of the Orange, tries her hand at fantasy under the name Joanne M. Harris. The Gospel of Loki follows the story of the trickster god, Loki, from his recruitment by Odin from the realm of Chaos to become a Norse g ...more
Arun Divakar
Hello there, I see that you are wondering who I am. My name is Loki and I am not Tom Hiddleston. Marvel studios and its comics lineup has done a fine job in making my name a household one but nothing could be farther from the truth. You see, I am not a fine spoken British gentleman who fights costumed super powered human beings in NYC. My abode is a place of biting cold, darkness and incessant violence. I was a sentient being when the concept of a world itself was beyond comprehension. I was aro ...more
Christine
Apparently Loki is the man of the moment. He needs to thank Tom Hiddleston for that apparently. While some of those who pick up Joanne Harris’ latest might be hoping for Loki a la Marvel, those of us who know about the real Loki are in for a great ride.
The conceit behind the novel is obvious from the title. The story starts with Loki joining the Aesir and ends with Ragnork. It is the TMZ version of the story as it were.
It’s hilarious. It’s strange addictive even though the reader knows that Lo
...more
Jessica
Mar 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The tale of the gods, the Aesir and Vanir, from their humble beginnings, through their glory, to their downfall, as told by . . . yep, Loki. Who has a breezy, sassy, anachronism-laden way of telling his side of the story. Misunderstood, unloved, unlucky, but full of plots and plans, this was exactly what I was hoping for!
Laura Hughes
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun and engaging take on Norse mythology, told from the perspective of the Trickster himself. Very entertaining, and with a great narrative voice, too.
Nikki
I love Loki's voice in this. I promised Joanne Harris I wouldn't mention A Certain Actor, but actually, I think she makes her Loki pretty distinct anyway. It's recognisably her writing, her way of getting into a character's head -- I think I could recognise the style somehow without ever knowing the author -- and she makes it work very well. I've actually found over time that I prefer her other work, like Chocolat, to Runemarks, Runelight and The Gospel of Loki, which are ostensibly closer to my ...more
Giovanna
Sep 22, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
1.5

Here's what I wanted from this book:


Uhm wrong gif!!! Sorry not sorry .

Uhm I meant, this:


And maybe some of this:


What I actually got left me like:


And:


(Watch this one at your own risk)


And it looked like:

But with no drama

Which gets me to this:


SO. BORING.
Long story short: this book is damn flat. Harris' writing was so flat she managed to make Loki seem boring. I actually struggled to finish it, because I wasn't interested in it at all. Just to be clear though, this book is in no way terrible an
...more
Eleanor
I was very disappointed. It claims to be written for adults, but to me it seemed to be aimed at mid teens or younger in terms of language and style. The Norse myths are fascinating, but not relayed by someone who calls himself Yours Truly and tries to be hip but only succeeds in being tiresome. Two stars for the idea of telling the story from Loki's point of view, but that's all.
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“After all, words are what remain when all the deeds have been done. Words can shatter faith; start a war; change the course of history. A story can make your heart beat faster; topple walls; scale mountains - hey, a story can even raise the dead. And that's why the King of Stories ended up being the King of the gods; because writing history and making history are only the breadth of a page apart.” 60 likes
“Well, that's history for you, folks. Unfair, untrue and for the most part written by folk who weren't even there.” 55 likes
More quotes…