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Tuesday, January 8, 2019

First Chapter First Paragraph - Norse Mythology



Today I am linking up with Vicki @ I’d Rather Be At The Beach who hosts a meme every Tuesday to share the First Chapter First Paragraph or two of the book you are currently reading or plan to read soon.

I have been away from this meme for a long time, probably before Vicki took it over from Diane.  I've missed it and since I won't be necessarily doing reviews of each and every book I read this year, I decided to join in again.

The book I'm sharing this week is one that is a book group selection for January.  This is a group that I wasn't able to attend much in 2018, but I'm hoping to join in more this year.  Their first book is Neil Gaiman's Norse Mythology.  I've not yet read any books by Neil Gaiman and, actually, I'm amazed that I haven't.  The author does the narration of the audio.  I'll probably be trying a read/listen.  Here's the first couple of paragraphs to be followed by the blurb.




First Paragraph(s):

It's a hard to have a favorite sequence of myths as it is to have a favorite style of cooking (some nights you might want Thai food, some nights sushi, other nights you crave the plain home cooking you grew up on).  But if I had to declare a favorite, it would probably be for the Norse myths.
     My first encounter with Asgard and its inhabitants was as a small boy, no more than seven, reading the adventures of the Mighty Thor as depicted by American comics artist Jack Kirby, in stories plotted by Kirby and Stan Lee and dialogued by Stan Lee's brother, Larry Lieber.  Kirby's Thor was powerful and good-looking, his Asgard a towering science fictional city of imposing buildings and dangerous edifices, his Odin wise and noble, his Loki a sardonic horn-helmeted creature of pure mischief.  I loved Kirby's blond hammer-wielding Thor, and I wanted to learn more about him.

Blurb:

Neil Gaiman, long inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction, presents a bravura rendition of the Norse gods and their world from their origin though their upheaval in Ragnarok.

In Norse Mythology, Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki—son of a giant—blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator.

Gaiman fashions these primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds and delves into the exploits of deities, dwarfs, and giants. Through Gaiman’s deft and witty prose, these gods emerge with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.

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Have you read this book or would you continue?  Have you read a Neil Gaiman book that I shouldn't miss?  Please tell!

36 comments:

  1. I've not read this author. I'm on the fence on this one.

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  2. I've never read Gaiman, and mythology is not necessarily my favorite. But Norse gods might just reel me in. Thanks for sharing and here's mine: “THE WINTER SISTER”

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    1. Well, there is always Thor (as in the current Thor in the movies - ha!).

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  3. I'm not a fan of mythology but I hope you enjoy the book.

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    1. Thanks, Vicki! And thanks for continuing to host this meme!

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  4. :) I do like mythology, including modern adaptations of myths and legends. Of course, I'm also interest because of Neil Gaiman!

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    1. So, you are a Gaiman fan too. Good to know.

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  5. Hmm... I like the overarching idea of mythology but I'm not sure this is a book for me but I'm sure it will be fab for Neil Gaiman fans!

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    1. Yes, I listened to a bit of his reading and his voice is lovely. Really.

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  6. I'm not sure this genre would be for me, but I've heard so many good things about Neil Gaiman. I've never read his books, though. I hope you are enjoying it.

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  7. We listened to the audio on a road trip last summer. I love listening to him.

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    1. Oh good and thanks for telling about it. I listened to a sample of his reading (so many authors who read their own works are...not so great). Gaiman is wonderful sounding though.

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  8. That first paragraph has me interested even though I'm not a big fan of mythology. I've only listened to one book by Gaiman and I really enjoyed it. When you finish with this, I recommend The Ocean at the End of the Lane. I thought it was very good. I've also read The Graveyard Book, which was good but not great. But back to listening to Gaiman. I agree with Juli. I wrote this in my review for TOATEOTL: Move over, Jim Dale; I think I’m in love. Neil Gaiman has such a rich, smooth voice; I would happily listen to him read a Subaru service manual. :)

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    1. I'll keep those books in mind, Les. And I agree that his voice is great.

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  9. This one of those books that I've had on my radar for a while. I have read some Gaiman, a couple of novels and a couple of books of short stories plus Good Omens, the book he wrote with Terry Pratchett, which is excellent. The Graveyard Book is also excellent and The Ocean at the End of the Lane. I'll be interested to hear what you make of this Norse myths book when you've finished, Kay.

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    1. I'm glad to hear about your experiences with Gaiman's work, Cath. I've gotten some good suggestions for future reads. Haven't started this yet, but soon.

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  10. Glad you are able to attend your book club. Love this author and would give this book a try.

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    1. Thanks, Nise'! Yes, this particular book club is one I try to attend, but don't always get to do it. Also, I'm not always particularly interested in the book. It's at another area library.

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  11. He is so not my cup of tea, but he's doing just fine without me! Also, I have no interested in Norse myths.

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    1. I've always been interested in mythology and know more about the Greek myths. I have liked reading about the Norse ones as well over the years. Plus, I do like Thor. Ha!

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  12. I've read several books by this author that I really enjoyed. I just didn't think of him as a mystery writer. Now I'm curios. Enjoy your bookclub discussion.

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    1. Margot, I don't think of him as a mystery writer either. This particular book club is not the mystery book club. I also attend (or attempt to attend) a couple of other book clubs that read a mix of fiction and non-fiction. I'm not always interested in the books they select, but am sometimes game for a new author.

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  13. Never read a Gaiman. I assumed he was heavy into fantasy, but not the kind I read. How is this story presented? I mean, I'm trying to wrap my brain around how he is writing this. Fantasy fiction featuring mythological gods, or a compilation of known essays about them? Hope you enjoy it.

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    1. I haven't read it yet, Rita, but from the chapter headings it looks like stories. I'll write a post about my experience - probably telling what happens and the thoughts from the book group meeting in late January.

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  14. That first chapter is pure Gaiman. I love him and yet have not yet read this one. I need to change that in 2019!

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    1. Good to know, Michelle. As I said, I haven't read anything by him, but I've certainly heard a lot about his books.

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  15. I could be interested in this book. Scandinavian roots. When they first did the show "Vikings" I watched it. It was a depiction of people who are legends. It was based on what has been passed down. They often addressed the Norse gods and what they stood for etc. After 2 seasons, the writers went nuts. I liked when they described history, legends and myths. I may check this out.

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    1. We watched a little bit of Vikings too, but quickly decided we were not all that interested. You might like this one, Gayle.

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  16. I don't know very much about Norse mythology so this would be interesting to read. I loved Greek mythology when I studied it in high school and college. As far as recs for other Neil Gaiman books, I've only read Coraline which I highly recommend. I need to read more of his books that's for sure!

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    1. Thanks for the recommendation, Iliana. I also love Greek mythology. I was working at the library when Rick Riordan first came out with the Percy Jackson series and I read The Lightning Thief. Loved it. Told lots of moms, dads, and kids about that series.

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  17. I have some books by Gaiman I would like to read: The Anansi Boys and Neverwhere. Also a book he wrote with Terry Pratchett, Good Omens. Maybe I will get to one or two of them this year.

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    1. Thanks for telling me what you have of his. I've gotten some good suggestions from everyone here.

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  18. I've wanted to read Gaiman for a while, but I don't think this is where I'd start.

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    1. I hear you, Stacy. Perhaps another book.

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Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!