Cover Love #5 Legends From the Ancient North

It’s time for another cover love blog post. ‘Cause who doesn’t like a beautifully designed book? As always, Penguin knows how to design a classic, so today it’s time for the Legends From the Ancient North …
While I agree with the saying ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’, I do like to collect books I love in a certain series. Maybe it’s the control freak in me, or maybe I’m just weird like that, but I like my books to match. Luckily for me, I can always turn to Penguin for this. The imprint Vintage does a great job re-designing classics by Jane Austen, the Brontë sisters, Virginia Woolf and the likes. On the occasion of the premiere of The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies, Penguin Classics published the Legends From the Ancient North series.

Pretty, aren’t they? About the series:

Our Legends from the Ancient North are five classics of Norse literature that inspired J. R. R. Tolkien’s epic vision in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Reading them brings us as close as we will ever get to the magical worlds of the Vikings and the origins of their twentieth-century counterpart: Tolkien’s Middle Earth.

Let’s be honest: the classics are not all Norse. Beowulf and The Wanderer are both Old English poems, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a Middle English text. Only The Elder Edda and The Saga of the Volsungs are really Norse as in ‘Scandinavian’: the Edda is Old Norse and the Volsunga Saga is Icelandic.

So, although it is hardly a Legends from the Ancient North series, it is an interesting collection. I enjoyed reading Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and I’m looking forward to reading Beowulf and The Saga of the Volsungs! A copy of both The Wanderer and The Elder Edda will make my collection complete. How do you like the series?

Amber Linde

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