The Gospel of Loki

By Joanne M. Harris

Rating: 4 stars

This book retells the fairly familiar story of Norse mythology, but from the point of view of the trickster god, Loki. As you may imagine, the Trickster isn’t the most reliable narrator, but Harris does a good job of getting inside his head and making him sympathetic, even when recounting some of his more unpleasant acts (such as arranging the killing of Baldor). As well as that tale, we have other familiar myths recounted here, including his involvement in acquiring mighty weapons for the Aesir, getting Thor to dress up as a bride and tricking Frey to give up his runesword.

This is all told in the first person, and we see Loki from the start, when he was tamed from the Chaos by Odin, to the early desire to belong and fit in at Asgard to the disillusionment and anger that leads to his turning his back on the gods and eventually to Ragnarok.

Loki is an engaging narrator, with a wry wit and humorous turn of phrase. The reader finds themselves being drawn into his point of view and wanting him to succeed, even as we follow him to the final betrayal at the end of the world.

Harris has done a great job here of finding a fresh retelling of the Norse myths and this is a very enjoyable way to rediscover them.

Book details

ISBN: 9781473202368
Publisher: Hachette Australia
Year of publication: 2014

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