Based on medieval Norse legend, Saga is a novel of enormous power, one of those rare historical fictions which the reader knows is authentic in its evocation of another time and place. We meet Arnkel, the fierce Norse chieftain of Swan's fjord who has sworn to recapture the lands his bitter, ageing fatherMore »
Based on medieval Norse legend, Saga is a novel of enormous power, one of those rare historical fictions which the reader knows is authentic in its evocation of another time and place. We meet Arnkel, the fierce Norse chieftain of Swan's fjord who has sworn to recapture the lands his bitter, ageing father has sold off, robbing his son of his inheritance. Arnkel feuds with his neighbours, exploits the desires of his closest supporter for another man's wife and hires assassins to carry out his will. Arnkel schemes against Snorri, a rival chieftain; their claims against each other are taken to 'the Thing', the country's tribal council, where clans meet to celebrate as well as to settle disputes. The land is stalked by evil -- whispering elves are everywhere -- and violence is a constant threat: neighbour distrusts neighbour and no one knows where or when death will strike. The difficult reality of life is always in the foreground; one can virtually see and feel the harsh beauty of the land, the passions and the rivalries of the clansmen and women. This unique novel makes medieval Iceland come alive: its rituals, the role of the supernatural, the enormous influence of law. Saga is a novel never to be forgotten.« Less
a novel of medieval Iceland
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