Book summary

The Long Ships ebook review

The book is set in the late 10th century & follows the adventures of Orm ("serpent"), called "Red" for his hair & his temper, a native of Scania. The story portrays the political situation of Europe in the later Viking Age, Andalusia under Al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir, Denmark under Harold Bluetooth, followed by the struggle between Eric the Victorious & Sweyn Forkbeard of Denm The book is set in the late 10th century & follows the adventures of Orm ("serpent"), called "Red" for his hair & his temper, a native of Scania. The story portrays the political situation of Europe in the later Viking Age, Andalusia under Al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir, Denmark under Harold Bluetooth, followed by the struggle between Eric the Victorious & Sweyn Forkbeard of Denmark, Ireland under Brian Boru, England under Ethelred the Unready, the Battle of Maldon, all before the backdrop of the gradual Christianisation of Scandinavia, contrasting the pragmatic Norse pagan outlook with Islam & Christianity.

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Book author

Megan Montero ebooks review

Megan Montero

Frans G. Bengtsson (1894–1954) was born and raised in the southern Swedish province of Skåne, the son of an estate manager. His early writings, including a doctoral thesis on Geoffrey Chaucer and two volumes of poetry written in what were considered antiquated verse forms, revealed a career-long interest in historical literary modes and themes. Bengtsson was a prolific translator (of Paradise Lost Frans G. Bengtsson (1894–1954) was born and raised in the southern Swedish province of Skåne, the son of an estate manager. His early writings, including a doctoral thesis on Geoffrey Chaucer and two volumes of poetry written in what were considered antiquated verse forms, revealed a career-long interest in historical literary modes and themes. Bengtsson was a prolific translator (of Paradise Lost, The Song of Roland, and Walden), essayist (he published five collections of his writings, mostly on literary and military topics), and biographer (his two-volume biography of Charles XII (Karl XII:s levnad) won the Swedish Academy’s annual prize in 1938). In 1941 he published Röde Orm: Sjöfarare i västerled (Red Orm at Home and on the Western Way), followed, in 1945, by Röde Orm: Hemma och i österled (Red Orm at Home and on the Eastern Way). The two books were published in a single volume in the United States and England in 1954 as The Long Ships. During the Second World War, Bengtsson was outspoken in his opposition to the Nazis, refusing to allow for a Norwegian translation of The Long Ships while the country was still under German occupation.

Bengtsson married Gerda Fineman in 1939. He studied at the University of Lund from 1912, receiving his licentiate in philosophy in 1930. He died in 1954 after a long illness.

Megan Montero

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