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Nordic Tales: Folktales from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Denmark


4.01  ·  Rating details ·  334 ratings  ·  89 reviews
Nordic Tales is a collection of 16 traditional tales from the enchanting world of Nordic folklore.

Translated and transcribed by folklorists in the 19th century, these stories are at once magical, hilarious, cozy, and chilling.

Welcome to a world of mystical adventure—where trolls haunt the snowy forests, terrifying monsters roam the open sea, a young woman journeys to the e
Hardcover, 168 pages
Published August 13th 2019 by Chronicle Books
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Average rating 4.01  · 
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 ·  334 ratings  ·  89 reviews

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Sep 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Nordic Tales by Chronicle Books and illustrated by Ulla Thynell is a beautiful collection of 17 folk tales from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Denmark. Every tale varies in length, but most are fairly quick and easy to read.

The book is divided into three sections: Transformation, Wit, and Journeys. Under each title, the author has included where it originates, and a few tales have more information attached at the bottom of the page for more clarification of a word used, or a historical fa
Apr 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
The moment I discovered this book, I got a burning desire to drink strong black coffee and start learning Icelandic.
One question though, where can I find a Viking ship to hop on and sail away from my isolation?
Disclaimer: ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

This collection of stories from Denmark, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, and Finland draws from famous collections, but also lesser known collections. It is divided int three sections transformations, wit, and journeys. While East of the Sun, West of the Moon is included many of the stories are not as well known.

The collection starts with “The Forest Bride” about a young man who marries a mouse. It ends with the story of “Jack of Sjoholm and the
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Aug 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: egalley
A lovely collection of fairy tales. The art's beautiful, and it had been a while since I'd read classic fairy tales rather than retellings, so I'd forgotten how soothing they can be. Though the tales themselves were new to me, many of them were reminiscent of Grimm's tales, which is interesting from a historical perspective. The final tale of the collection was the only one I didn't enjoy, too long and too focused on details of boats.
Liv the Jellyfish Queen
Nordic Tales.

Ah, fairy tales. You love them, then, for a brief time, you're too old for them, and then you love them again!
Most of the time, only fairy tales from the Grimms or those made into movies by Disney get their time in the spotlight. So I'm very glad I could read this collection of nordic fairy tales.
I, surprisingly, knew a fair share of them. Sure, most of them follow classic fairy tale tropes like the animal bride, but you don't read fairy tales to discover something completely new to

“Yes; why not?” said the lad. “But what sort of man are you?”
“They call me Death,” said the man.
“The very man for my money,” said the lad. “Thee I am glad to drink with,”
and as he said this he put down his keg, and began to tap the ale into a bowl.
“Thou art an honest, trustworthy man, for thou treatest all alike, both rich and
So he drank his health, and Death drank his health, and Death said he had
never tasted such drink, and as the lad was fond of him, they drank
Interesting collection of stories. Some are definitely a bit weird by modern standards and maybe a bit repetitive, but it's always interesting to see collections of stories from different cultures. I also like seeing the similarities between these stories and stories from other cultures - like there was one in here where the woman wasn't supposed to look at her husband and only was with him in the dark and then broke her promise by looking at him with a candle that is a lot like a Greek myth sto ...more
This was an absolutely beautiful collection. I adore the illustration style. About half the stories were new to me, which was awesome.
Steff Pasciuti
Jun 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
| Reader Fox Blog |

Nordic Tales is a large collection of stories and folktales brought together and illustrated by the wonderful Ulla Thynell. The stories range in length, theme, character, and plot. While I personally had not read any of them before, I was easily able to recognize the commonalities that they have with other old short stories. As with the Hans Christian Andersen works I've been reading lately, Nordic Tales has a lot of summaries, falling in love quickly without really knowi
Joanna Bennett
Oct 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-reads
I love a good folktale every now and again. I love reading ones from different countries because they are all so unique when it comes to the characters even if the plots can sometimes be the same. I saw this one offered as an ebook from my library and knew that I needed to read it. Although it took a few weeks for it to come in I am glad I took a chance with it.

My favorite thing about folktales is the lessons we can learn from them. There was always a reason for sharing these stories and it make
Sophy H
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Although it looks more like a children's book, the stories here can be a little harsh for kids!

The stories all have a moral grounding and a kooky little tale to tell.

The best elements however are the illustrations! Ulla Thynell is a visual genius! The illustrations are beautifully presented, colourful, meaningful, just brilliant. She has an instagram page which is fantastic also.

I loved reading this on a rainy day, reminded me of being little!
Kari Marie
Aug 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nordic Tales is a collection of fairy tales that I had not heard of before. I enjoy fairy tales and really enjoy some new ones. The illustrations were also beautiful. I would recommend this book if you had not touched any fairy tales outside of the Grimm Brothers.
Great stories of Nordic origin that I was unfamiliar with.

The illustrations were beautiful and soft.
Jan 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fairy-tales
This collection of folktales is full of drop-dead gorgeous art by one of my very favorite artists, Ulla Thynell, and this is a lovely collection of folk tales, too. I wish there had been a clearer attribution of who wrote each of them, but it's also possible that the information was there and I just wasn't looking hard enough at all of the appropriate copyright notices. I read this out loud to my two kids, who loved it and were enthralled by it...until the very last story, which is just SO long ...more
Jun 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely adored this gem of a book. I am familiar with the fairytales of Hans Christian Andersen but didn't realize that there were so many folktales out there that needed to be told. These 16 stories from Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Iceland, and Finland are special in their own right and add spice to the tales we do have. The translation is good and the drawings are exquisite. Highly recommended for those who love folktales.
Hitessh Panchal
Sep 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Tales are good , but they seemed to be Bed time stories more than folk tales !!!
Laura Hoffman Brauman
I love fairy tales and this collection of folktales from Nordic countries was a treat to read - plus the illustrations were gorgeous.
Teresa Barrera
Aug 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nordic Tales is a collection of 19th century folklore. Many I've never heard of before and I really enjoyed reading them.
Thanks NetGalley and the author for allowing me to read this.
Aug 11, 2019 marked it as dnf
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a digital copy in exchange for an honest review.

First of all, this book is absolutely gorgeous. The endpapers are amazing and the illustrations are stunning. However, I think it would have been even better if there were more pictures, and if the text was a little bit bigger and incorporated in the drawings.
When it comes to the stories, I thought most of them were weird and I, unfortunately, didn’t find them enjoyable, not becaus
Joshua Anderson
Sep 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
It’s not often I pick up a book with a gorgeous cover and even more rare to pick up a book with a beautiful cover and other stunning illustrations within, but Nordic Tales is that book. Besides the full pages of art you’ll find the book is made up of three themes labeled: Transformation, Wit, and Journeys, with stories indicating which country they originated from. Each story is about 5-10 pages with the last story being the longest, 20 pages. Each folk tale is fun in its own right, similar to f ...more
Wayne McCoy
Sep 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
'Nordic Tales: Folktales from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Denmark' by Chronicle Books with illustrations by Ulla Thynell is a collection of 16 traditional tales.

The collection is broken up in to three sections: Transformations, Wit and Journeys. There are stories of bravery and courage and foolishness. Trust in the different is a theme and kindness is always rewarded handsomely. Reading these, it's fun to see the similarities and differences to stories I know.

I love the full color ill
Mar 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
What it says on the cover: a collection of Nordic fairytales celebrating virtues, capturing wit, and generally teaching lessons through parable. I enjoyed this, though I realized that trying to read a book of fairytales when you're not trying to sleep can be a challenge. This would be a useful book for anyone making a collection or study of the lore people believe about themselves.
Nancy Lewis
A nice collection of fairy tales with beautiful illustrations.
January Gray
Sep 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book of tales and would buy it as a gift for someone. Broken up in sections and overall very enjoyable.
Apr 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Some really cute and charming stories and other very, very weird and slightly confusing ones. For the most part, worth the read!
Paige Belfield
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautiful collection of folklore, retold richly and close to tradition, accompanied by some of the most stunning pastel artwork I have ever seen.
Elysian Fields
Jul 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs, favorites
This collection of folktales is stunning! The collection is rich in tales, filled with adventure, wonderful new worlds, timely morals, and beautiful illustrations.

Each story is just ling enough for a bed time adventure with a child or a nice tale between meetings as an adult. I loved them all and could hardly pick a favorite.

The stories (and there are seventeen) are divided by type: transformation, wit, and journeys. Each is both a fun to read and full of wisdom.

This book will become a family
Dec 18, 2019 rated it liked it
A lot of these tales are not my cup of tea, mostly only because a brat gets away with being a brat and wins a grand prize. I don't like folk tales with no morals.
Marie-Helene Fasquel
Jul 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My thanks to NetGalley and Chronicle Books for allowing me to read and review this book.
This is indeed a great collection of stories from Denmark, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, and Finland, which provides a large range of myths, cultures and legacies. My sister has been living in Iceland for over twenty years so I’ve read quite a few Icelandic novels but had never read any such stories. This was a wonderful discovery and treat. It is beautifully illustrated (as is the cover) by Ulla Thynell!
The colle
Jul 03, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: amazon-reviewed
Nordic Tales, illustrated by Ulla Thynell, is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in early July.

Similar to the Japanese folk tales I’ve read recently, this book is thematically chaptered by characters going through a change (my favorites of the bunch), outsmarting someone or something, or traveling a great distance. Before delving into this, I’m pretty sure that, based on being from Minnesota and a place colonized by Nords, there’s going to be some story elements that I’m familiar with (not like
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