Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Grendel: O Inimigo de Beowulf” as Want to Read:
Grendel: O Inimigo de Beowulf
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Grendel: O Inimigo de Beowulf

by
3.69  ·  Rating details ·  27,384 Ratings  ·  1,640 Reviews
O mais formidável monstro da literatura inglesa, Grendel, o inimigo de Beowulf, conta a sua história...

No épico anglo-saxónico do século oitavo, Beowulf, o herói do título, mata Grendel, o monstro meio humano que à noite atacava a cidadela do rei Hrothgar. Quando a ainda mais assustadora mãe de Grendel vem para o vingar, Beowulf persegue-a até ao seu covil e mata-a também.
...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published November 2007 by Saída de Emergência (first published 1970)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
karen
this review may or may not contain spoilers. i assume that most bookish people are familiar with the basic plot elements of beowulf, either through high school required reading or that video-game-looking movie, or cocktails at the heaney's. if not - this could ruin everything! but it won't. ah, existentialism... when i was a young lass with my fontanelle as yet unfused; when i still liked the doors and books about manson, i dabbled briefly and emotionally in existentialism. "l'enfer c'est les au ...more
Stephen
grendel-scrithing-e-2-1v2

If I could ADOPT that big, lug of a monster, I would be signing the papers right now because Grendel really, really needs a friend something awful. That lonely, melancholy maneater gave my soul a migraine and his final "haunting" words spent me like loose change from the sofa. I can't tell you (though I'm still gonna try) how much I loved this book. It is definitely being added to my list of ALL TIME FAVORITES.

I have rarely fallen so completely into a narrative as I did from the very first wor
...more
Heidi The Hippie Reader
Grendel is the ill-fated monster from the ancient story, Beowulf. This is his tale.

There are very few details shared about Grendel in Beowulf. I thought that this story would be an opportunity for the reader to get to know him.

Unfortunately, we spend most of the time in Grendel's mind, circling endlessly around the ideas of time, brutality, nature and the meaninglessness of existence.

I wanted to know more about Grendel's mother, but there was very little about her.

John Gardner wrote her as some
...more
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Philosophies clash, along with monsters and men.
description

This story of Grendel, told from his point of view, is an unusual amalgamation of Grendel's stream-of-consciousness thought (which becomes more clear and organized as Grendel grows and develops) about his loneliness and self-centeredness, his attempts to make sense of the world, and his cruelty and hatred toward men, while being drawn to them at the same time. Grendel watches the Danes at Heorot at night, eyeing the old king, his young wife and fa
...more
Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
Oct 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Joshua Nomen-Mutatio by: karen
Shelves: fiction
During a routine walk from the kitchen to the main room, he stopped mid-stride and suddenly realized that no actual speech had escaped his mouth in what was, sadly, many years. And even very few non-lingual sounds aside from occasional coughs and heavy, anxious breathing ever passed between his lips and the world. He scrolled through his long-term memory for the last time he'd spoken and before reaching a definitive answer he interupted himself with the realization that no matter what the specif ...more
Arianne Thompson
Look, I'll be honest: I'm never going to win a triathlon. Yes, scrubbing floors and wrestling dogs keeps me stronger than your average sedentary librivore, but my ecological niche is definitely chair-shaped.

Even so, I was surprised at how challenging this book was. Take this sentence, for example:

I am aware in my chest of tuberstirrings in the blacksweet duff of the forest overhead.

The first time is pretty much "bwah?"

The second time, your brain starts to adjust to higher-altitude reading. You
...more
Rebecca
Dec 04, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lit nerds
I feel a little ambivalent about this book. It was definitely intellectually appealing, and the conversation that Grendel had with the dragon was very well done. But Grendel didn't really do what I expect novels to do: it didn't make me care about anything. Part of that may be because it's only a meager 174 pages - probably technically a novella - but I think even in 174 pages Gardner could have engaged the reader more.

While I was able to scrape away a few enjoyable bits from this book out of sh
...more
Michael
Aug 09, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Rob
Every once in a while a book comes along that is so beautifully written it shames me to think I should ever consider putting verse to paper. This is one such book.
-m
John Farebrother
A curious yet compelling read. It tells the story of Beowulf, but from the perspective of the monster, Grendel. Grendel, whose only companion is his taciturn mother, is a lonely creature, and each chapter is an excerpt from his solitary musings as he attempts to make sense of the world and his place in it. As such he is psychotic, but he is also very young, an adolescent, which elicits a reluctant sympathy in the reader. He is fascinated by the world of men, with their coordinated purposeful act ...more
knig
Oct 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
Beowulf is a an 11c heroic epic poem, written in England, in old English, by newly Christianised monks, but set in Scandinavia. If one can’t handle the Nowell Codex, the film does a pretty good raconteur job.

Grendel (1971), of course, precedes both the film and Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (1974) which subsequently utilises similar techniques: interweaving highly theoretical discourse with quotidian and utilitarian undertakings.

Effectively, Gardner takes up Beowulf a millennium post
...more
Jordan
Jan 16, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After reading "Beowulf" in my Brit Lit class, I was turned onto "Grendel", by my English teacher. I truly love this book, and the way that John Gardner plays with the character Grendel, and the humor within the writing. After all Grendel was just a misunderstood pagan monster. What's a monster to do? : )
Warwick
This smallish book, published in 1972, is an interesting exercise in examining a well-known story from an unexpected viewpoint – in this case it's Beowulf retold by the monster Grendel. It could have been a bit naff, like one of those awful ‘reinventions’ that certain novelists seem to knock off every couple of months, like Hamlet narrated by Ophelia. And actually I didn't really like it at first, for exactly the reason that it seemed a bit gimmicky. But by the end (and it's not a long book), it ...more
Connie
"Grendel" is a retelling of the epic poem "Beowulf" from the point of view of the monster, Grendel. The poem was written in Old English sometime between the 8th and 11th Century. The monster had been attacking the Scyldings in the mead hall of Hrothgar, the king of the Danes. The hero Beowulf, a Geat, destroyed Grendel. Although the poem "Beowulf" also tells of further adventures of the hero, the retelling ends with the death of Grendel.

In "Grandel" the narrator-monster has been living in a cave
...more
Peter Watson
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grendel is John Gardner’s endeavor to squeeze as many schools of thought (nihilism, existentialism, solipsism, you name it) into 174 short pages. The result is an intense and quirky philosophical treatise on beauty, evil, culture, love, and humanity’s search for meaning (or meaninglessness) that raises several uncomfortable questions — why do I feel compassion and empathy for a bloodthirsty monster? Why are some people “good” and others “evil”? What makes an action or character moral or immoral? ...more
Terry
Feb 09, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
(my thanks to Rich for the Christmas gift)

It's sort of weird that I've never read this book before. Having grown up with an English teacher for a father, I've known the story of Beowulf ever since I watched an 8mm film project one of his students made, the chief special effect of which involved flushing a yearbook photo of the boy who played Beowulf down the toilet in order to simulate the hero's diving into the haunted mere. I've known about John Gardner's retelling of the story from the monste
...more
SatouCeesay
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was one of great self discovery. John Gardner takes us through the “highs” and lows of a beings life that has been forsaken by society. Taking philosophical ideas as a guideline, Grendel struggles with the thought of existence and meaning in his life. With two different kinds of influences pulling at him from both directions, Grendel must find the side where he belongs the most. I think the book could relate to people’s own struggles with meaning and that even though the book was writt ...more
Dracostellarum
I'm not sure of what to think of this book. The style shifts a lot, and clearly Gardner put a lot of work and thought both to its narrative construction and to the themes he was covering in the book. That being said, I was more aware of how the book was written rather than why. The words and the construction of the narrative got very much in the way; I was too aware of them. It seemed very skeletal, not a whole lot of flesh or life to it. There is a lot of philosophy, and its introduction seems ...more
GiuliaMazz
Sep 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The novel opened as a wittily irreverent light read. "174 pages of a cynical monster," I thought. "How bad can this be?" Little did I know that John Gardner would soon give my mind an "obscene little kick" and that I'd be unceremoniously thrown headfirst into a philosophical powerhouse. Grendel's strength lies not in the complexity of its prose (although the two UNCLOSED PARENTHETICAL ASIDES still infuriate me to no end), but rather in its capacity to force readers to reflect on themselves, thei ...more
Brian Symons
John Gardner’s Grendel takes readers on a journey for meaning. Grendel, the protagonist, uses the plot of the novel to find a purpose in a world that has left him alone and isolated. However, Grendel is not alone, Gardner teaches readers that everyone has trouble finding meaning in a sometimes-cruel world. It’s not only the low-life (Grendel), it’s also the elites (Hrothulf). Gardner leaves readers with the same question, what is our purpose in life? Why are we here? In all, Grendel is a compell ...more
Avaciavolino
John Gardner's Grendel dives head first into the world of existentialism and attempts to answer the age old question of what is the meaning of life. Readers are taken on a journey to seek this answer through the epitome of an outcast, the monstrous Grendel, who wrestles with grasping his own identity in the world. The struggle between nihilism and the existence of a meaningful purpose in life is clearly on display through the trials and tribulations of Grendel's life. While the premise of Grende ...more
Adam Ginsburg
Grendel, John Gardner's complex brainchild, is a philosophically deep novel that delves into many of the avenues of contemporary thought. This Beowulf spin-off deftly explores what it means to be human, but at times it feels as if Gardner goes out of his way to be overly philosophical. At the risk of providing a spoiler, was it necessary to insert "nihil ex nihilo" at the end of a chapter? The actions of that chapter proved that 'nothing comes from nothing,' but the insertion of that phrase illu ...more
Sophie Mcintyre
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Arun Divakar
Apr 22, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
History could very well be interpreted as a stream of stories penned by victors. There have been battles,coups and epoch changing events and almost all of which have been stories told by those left alive or those left on the winning pedestals. Did anyone tell us much about Ravana's thoughts as his entire kingdom was ground to dust by a man and his army of simians ? What of Ernst Blofeld whose plans were doused in hot water by a dapper Brit ? I could go on but the point I want to convey is that e ...more
Alex O'Brien
'Grendel' is a brilliant retelling of the Old English poem 'Beowulf' from the perspective of the monster. Immediately, Gardner's first person voice enticed me into the story, and his lyrical prose, poetic sensibility, and articulate language kept me reading, as did his breath-taking existential meditations on the nature of good and evil, the power of art and story-telling, our constructions of religion and heroism, and the meaning of life. This short book has jumped onto my list of favourites, a ...more
Rob
Jun 29, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: aspiring novelists
Something I had forgotten in the 20 or so years since last I'd read Grendel, was that it is not a necessarily a book about the solipsism of "the monster". No, Grendel is largely unconcerned with whether/not the Scyldings exist; his struggle is not with existence [1] but rather one with alienation and isolation. In some ways, he is the ultimate outsider: not human enough for the Scyldings, too human for the animals -- the only ones that will speak with him are an aloof dragon [2] and a senile/der ...more
Zach
Apr 04, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, hated
Grendel can't settle on a single idea or voice. Whiny, self-involved and "tediously poetic," this retelling of the epic Beowulf from the monster's point of view is full of existentialist pity-parties (the dragon gives a tiresome lecture on the brevity of the universe) and anachronistic outbursts (Grendel suddenly gives the empty sky an upraised middle finger). Eventually the rapidly shifting topics and themes blurs together into an unholy literary drone. Blah blah blah nihilism blah blah blah my ...more
kari
Jun 13, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
What beautiful prose. What a twisted idea for a narrator - giving voice to Grendel, who is fully aware of how others see him. And even when he describes his rides on the mead halls, when he commits murder with obvious contentment, he still earns the readers' sympathy, or at least some of it. "Grendel" is a compelling study in our own understanding of humanity, but... it's just half of the story. And I don't mean Beowulf, but Grendel's mother, the queen, the invisible women who are either prizes ...more
Aidan_McGovern
Sep 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: loved-it
Within the sometimes cryptic pages of John Gardner’s “Grendel” is a philosophically reflective novel that challenges the moral scrutiny of human beings in a literary analysis of what’s “good” and “evil”. The juxtaposition of good and evil forces or characters has been illustrated within works of literature for centuries, but “Grendel” takes the initiative in reversing our expectations of moral standards, as we follow the surprisingly intellectual journey of an ancient monster. Sure, many of Gren ...more
Anshul Baid
Sep 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: loved-it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lars Guthrie
Apr 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Marvelous. Everyone but me, it seemed, who was around in the early 70's, read "Grendel." I don't think I really even knew what Beowulf was all about back then, so wasn't interested. So now I'm glad to come to "Grendel" after many connections to the source. I work with someone who is getting her masters in English Lit, and she complained about reading Beowulf papers as a T.A. that were all about how Grendel felt. She was at first confused about the reason for this--not having come of age until Ga ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Mr. Allred's Engl...: Grendel 10 12 Mar 04, 2013 01:28PM  
Mr. Allred's Engl...: Grendel 9 10 Mar 04, 2013 12:03PM  
Grendel's Review of Grendel 7 95 Oct 23, 2011 03:17PM  
  • The Well of the Unicorn
  • Sea-Kings of Mars and Otherworldly Stories
  • Black Gods and Scarlet Dreams
  • The Emperor of Dreams
  • The Mark of the Beast and Other Horror Tales (Dover Horror Classics)
  • Three Hearts and Three Lions
  • Was
  • The Second Book of Lankhmar  (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser #5-7)
  • The House on the Borderland and Other Novels
  • The Conan Chronicles: Volume 1: The People of the Black Circle (The Conan Chronicles, #1)
  • Gloriana
  • The World of the Short Story: A Twentieth Century Collection
  • The Land of Laughs
  • The Mabinogion Tetralogy
  • The Complete Compleat Enchanter
  • The Green Pearl and Madouc (Lyonesse, #2-3)
  • Time And The Gods
  • A Voyage to Arcturus
481146
John Champlin Gardner was a well-known and controversial American novelist and university professor, best known for his novel Grendel, a retelling of the Beowulf myth.

Gardner was born in Batavia, New York. His father was a lay preacher and dairy farmer, and his mother taught English at a local school. Both parents were fond of Shakespeare and often recited literature together. As a child, Gardner
...more
More about John Gardner...
“When I was a child I truly loved:
Unthinking love as calm and deep
As the North Sea. But I have lived,
And now I do not sleep.”
105 likes
“i understand that the world was nothing: a mechanical chaos of casual, brute enmity on which we stupidly impose our hopes and fears. i understood that, finally and absolutely, i alone exist. all the rest, i saw, is merely what pushes me, or what i push against, blindly - as blindly as all that is not myself pushes back. i create the whole universe, blink by blink.” 67 likes
More quotes…