10 books like Up And Down The Tree

By Runic John,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Up And Down The Tree. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Norse Myths

By Kevin Crossley-Holland,

Book cover of Norse Myths: Gods of the Vikings

The way these stories are phrased here makes this my favourite set of retellings. Crossley-Holland’s choice of words evokes the original Norse. He uses alliteration, mainly when describing land and sea, and he is very careful to use words that come from Old English, a sister language to Old Norse, in preference to words from Latin, Greek, and post-Latin languages. There are plenty of other retellings that cover similar ground, but none with quite this joy in the energy of the original.

Norse Myths

By Kevin Crossley-Holland,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Norse Myths as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With colour artwork by Gillian McClure, a collection of Norse myths.


D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths

By Ingri D'Aulaire, Edgar Parin D'Aulaire,

Book cover of D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths

The D'Aulaire's book is a visual feast of stories from the land of ice, fire and Viking culture. The tales are well-told and exciting. It comes with lively illustrations which offer children who haven't encountered Thor, Odin, Freya or Loki before, a panorama of this marvelous world and the many adventures of the Norse Gods.

D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths

By Ingri D'Aulaire, Edgar Parin D'Aulaire,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Caldecott medal-winning d'Aulaires once again captivate their young audience with this beautifully illustrated introduction to Norse legends, telling stories of Odin the All-father, Thor the Thunder-god and the theft of his hammer, Loki the mischievous god of the Jotun Race, and Ragnarokk, the destiny of the gods. Children meet Bragi, the god of poetry, and the famous Valkyrie maidens, among other gods, goddesses, heroes, and giants. Illustrations throughout depict the wondrous other world of Norse folklore and its fantastical Northern landscape.


A World Full of Gods

By John Michael Greer,

Book cover of A World Full of Gods: An Inquiry into Polytheism

We live in a society that allows for only two possibilities: that there exists either one God or no God at all. What C.S. Lewis did for Christianity, this book does for modern Polytheism. It’s an intelligent and thoughtful read that opens up the mind and heart to new spiritual possibilities.

A World Full of Gods

By John Michael Greer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A World Full of Gods as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this book John Michael Greer turns his attention to the intellectual underpinnings and superstructures of the Pagan and magical movements. Pagan religions have tended to be more concerned with practice that with theory and in a system that has no dogma - no legislated doctrine - that is as it should be. Yet as out movement grows and matures, it is inevitable that we will begin to think in a more abstract way about our models and systems. John Michael Greer has provided a primer on the kinds of ideas and themes that must be included in any discussion…


Odin's Wife

By William P. Reaves,

Book cover of Odin's Wife: Mother Earth in Germanic Mythology

This richly detailed book explores the worship of Odin and his wife, providing information from Continental sources as well as surviving Norse lore. It paints a different and more complete picture of a major goddess, and also brings to light older sides of Odin that have nothing to do with our modern images of Viking berserkers.

Odin's Wife

By William P. Reaves,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Odin's Wife as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Definitive Study of Odin's Wife, Frigg.

For more than a millennium, the people of Northern Europe venerated an Earth goddess, which evidence attests is the oldest known Germanic deity. Called by a number of names, when the accounts are compared, common traits emerge. During Yule, she rides among her people in a wagon inspecting homes, rewarding the industrious and punishing the lazy. With her husband, she leads the fearsome Wild Hunt, riding through the winter skies, cleansing the air of evil. Most often identified as Odin's wife, the ancients called her "Mother Earth", "Queen of Heaven", and the "Mother…


Gods and Myths of Northern Europe

By H.R. Ellis Davidson,

Book cover of Gods and Myths of Northern Europe

This is less about the myths themselves and more about the culture that spawned them. Ellis Davidson’s analysis of Nordic pre-Christian religion is sober but accessible, and comparisons are made with other contemporary belief systems such as the Celts’ and the ancient Britons’. The book nicely ties together the disparate tales much as the world tree, Yggdrasil, is said to have tied together the Nine Realms.

Gods and Myths of Northern Europe

By H.R. Ellis Davidson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Gods and Myths of Northern Europe as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Surveys the pre-Christian beliefs of the Scandinavian and Germanic peoples. Provides an introduction to this subject, giving basic outlines to the sagas and stories, and helps identify the charachter traits of not only the well known but also the lesser gods of the age.


Norse Mythology

By John Lindow,

Book cover of Norse Mythology: A Guide to the Gods, Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs

If you’re looking for a comprehensive reference book on the Norse deities, this is the title to get. In addition to describing the historical context and importance of Scandinavian mythology, the book alphabetically lists, describes, and explains the gods, the goddesses, as well as important mythological artifacts and creatures. It also has a section for additional resources and an excellent index. This is the book I find myself referring back to over and over again to make sure I’ve got my details right in my own writing.

Norse Mythology

By John Lindow,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Norse Mythology as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Norse Mythology explores the magical myths and legends of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland and Viking-Age Greenland-outlining along the way the prehistoric tales and beliefs from these regions that have remained embedded in the imagination of the world.

The book begins with an Introduction that helps put Scandinavian mythology in place in history, followed by a chapter that explains the meaning of mythic time, and a third section that presents in-depth explanations of each mythological term. These fascinating entries identify particular deities and giants, as well as the places where they dwell and the varied and wily means by which they…


Doom of the Gods

By Michael Harrison, Tudor Humphries,

Book cover of Doom of the Gods

This is a vigorous retelling of the last battle of the Norse gods and their enemies, how the gods tried to avert their doom, how they first met those who would kill almost all of them, and what happened after all the slaughter and destruction. The book has the size and format of a typical picture storybook but its powerful illustrations of threat and attack make it more suitable for an older audience.

Doom of the Gods

By Michael Harrison, Tudor Humphries,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Doom of the Gods as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Retells the main stories from the Norse legends, in a new larger format for this series.


The Age of Odin

By James Lovegrove,

Book cover of The Age of Odin

The God: Skadi, Freya, Thor (and more!)

Another take on Ragnarok, but wholly different from Norse Code. Set in a post-apocalyptic mini Ice Age—the fimbulwinter that precedes Ragnarok—and following a soldier/mercenary who signs himself up with no real idea of what he’s in for, Age of Odin gives us an action-packed war-driven adventure with fun takes on familiar and less familiar gods along the way—even including Ratatosk, the squirrel who resides upon and spreads gossip all along the World Tree.

The Age of Odin

By James Lovegrove,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Age of Odin as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gideon Coxall was a good soldier but bad at everything else, until a roadside explosive device leaves him with one deaf ear and a British Army half-pension. So when he hears about the Valhalla Project, it's like a dream come true. They're recruiting former service personnel for excellent pay, no questions asked, to take part in unspecified combat operations.

The last thing Gid expects is to find himself fighting alongside ancient Viking gods. The world is in the grip of one of the worst winters it has ever known, and Ragnaroek - the fabled final conflict of the Sagas -…


The Prose Edda

By Snorri Sturluson, Jesse L. Byock (translator),

Book cover of The Prose Edda

For serious readers of Norse mythology, its origins in literature and early culture the Byock translation of the 13th-century text by Snorri Sturluson presents the Viking equivalent of Heroditus’ Histories of the Ancient Greeks and the religious texts of the Abrahamic religions. It’s a thrilling read and forms the basis of all modern versions of Viking legend. I still refer to this, years after first reading it.

The Prose Edda

By Snorri Sturluson, Jesse L. Byock (translator),

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Prose Edda as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The most renowned of all works of Scandinavian literature and our most extensive source of Norse mythology

Written in Iceland a century after the close of the Viking Age, The Prose Edda tells ancient stories of the Norse creation epic and recounts the battles that follow as gods, giants, dwarves and elves struggle for survival. In prose interspersed with powerful verse, the Edda shows the gods' tragic realization that the future holds one final cataclysmic battle, Ragnarok, when the world will be destroyed. These tales have proved to be among the most influential of all myths and legends, inspiring works…


Norse Myths

By Carolyne Larrington,

Book cover of Norse Myths: A Guide to the Gods and Heroes

There are many books that aim to provide a succinct, coherent introduction to the subject of Norse mythology. Few, however, manage to so with the clarity and authority of Professor Carolyne Larrington’s The Norse Myths: A Guide to the Gods and Heroes. This book deals with all of the critical aspects of the mythos: from Ginnungagap (‘the howling void’) to Ragnarök (‘the doom of the gods’) by way of Yggdrasil the world-tree, the divine families (the Æsir and the Vanir) and the giants who opposed them, as well as the doings of human heroes like Sigurd the Volsung. This is an excellent introduction to the subject that includes retellings of many of the most important myths alongside illustrations and vital historical and literary context. If you are just beginning your journey into this realm of monsters and gods, there are few better places to start.

Norse Myths

By Carolyne Larrington,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Norse Myths as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Who were the Norse gods - the mighty AEsyr, led by Odinn, and the mysterious Vanir? In The Norse Myths we meet this passionate and squabbling pantheon, and learn of the mythological cosmos they inhabit. Passages translated from the Old Norse bring this legendary world to life, from the myths of creation to ragnaroek, the prophesied end of the world at the hands of Loki's army of monsters and giants, and everything that comes in between: the problematic relationship between the gods and the giants, in which enmity and trickery are punctuated by marriages and seductions; the (mis) adventures of…


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Interested in Norse mythology, polytheism, and vikings?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Norse mythology, polytheism, and vikings.

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