Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Song of the Vikings Published Today

Today is the official publication date of Song of the Vikings: Snorri and the Making of Norse Myths and the start of my Maine-to-Georgia (believe it or not!) book tour.

Actually, the official date was yesterday, but the hurricane intervened—my publisher’s offices in New York were closed.

I did make it to my first event, a lecture at the Samuel Reed Hall Library at Lyndon State College in Vermont, about 3 miles from my home. LSC had electricity; we didn’t. While there, I was interviewed by Channel 7 news for local TV.

Tomorrow, I go to Portland, Maine, where I’ll be speaking at the University of Southern Maine in the Glickman Library, Room 423, at 5:00. Portland-area friends, please join me!

Here’s the rest of the tour:
            11/2: Maine: Portland Free Library @ noon
            11/5: New Hampshire: Dartmouth Bookstore, Hanover @ 6:00
            11/7: Vermont: Mount Holly Town Library, Belmont @ 7:00
            11/8: New York: Cornell University Library @ 4:30
            11/9: Pennsylvania: Bucknell University Bookstore @ 5:30
            11/10: Virginia: Icelandic J√≥labasar, American Legion Post 177, Fairfax @ 11-3
            11/11: Pennsylvania: Webster’s Bookstore, State College @ 6:30
            11/12: Pennsylvania: Penn State Comparative Literature Luncheon, 112 Kern, University Park @ 12:15
            11/13: North Carolina: Malaprop’s Bookstore, Asheville @ 7:00
            11/17: Georgia: Eagle Eye Book Shop, Decatur @ 1:30
            11/20: Massachusetts: UMass-Amherst @ 2:30
            11/29: Vermont: Sterling College @ 6:30
            11/30: Vermont: Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center @ 7:00
            12/3: New York: Scandinavia House, New York City @ 6:30
            12/6: Vermont: Phoenix Books, Burlington, VT@ 7:00

Not near any of these events? Check out my book trailer:

Or take a peek at the jacket flap:

Snorri Sturluson, the thirteenth-century Icelandic chieftain who gave us Odin, Loki, and Thor, was as unruly as the Norse gods he created

Norse mythology has seeped into our imagination. Tales of one-eyed Odin, Thor and his mighty hammer, the trickster Loki, and the beautiful Valkyries have inspired countless writers, poets, and dreamers through the centuries, including Richard Wagner, JRR Tolkien, and Neil Gaiman. Few modern fantasy novels, films, or games are free of wandering wizards, fair elves and werewolves, dragons and dwarf smiths, magic rings and weapons, heroes that speak to birds, or trolls that turn to stone. But while Homer and Ovid are widely celebrated for their stories of Greek and Roman gods, the medieval Icelander who gave us Viking mythology is nearly forgotten.

In Song of the Vikings, author Nancy Marie Brown brings to life Snorri Sturluson, wealthy chieftain, wily politician, witty storyteller, and lover of Viking lore. She paints a vivid picture of the Icelandic landscape, with its colossal glaciers and volcanoes, steaming hot springs, and moonscapes of ash, ice, and rock. This was the world that inspired Snorri’s words, and led him to create unforgettable characters and tales, including nearly every story we know of the gods we still honor in the names Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. It was Snorri who created the archetype of the bold, blond, laugh-in-the-face-of-death Viking, and Snorri who gave the word saga the meaning it holds today.

Brown takes the reader on a tour of medieval Icelandic society as well, with its web of laws and blood feuds fueled by the Icelanders’ fierce sense of independence. There Snorri’s extravagant personality and unscrupulous tactics brought him close to ruling his country—and even closer to betraying it—before he was betrayed himself. He died a coward, cringing in his cellar, his Viking ideals abandoned. But his books lived on.

Drawing on her deep knowledge of Iceland and its history and first-hand reading of the original medieval sources, Brown gives us a richly textured narrative, revealing a spellbinding world that continues to fascinate. 

Learn more at


  1. SONG OF THE VIKINGS arrived on my front porch yesterday via and I have already begun reading!!
    I am directly descended from Snorri (but as my Icelandic cousins point out, so is most of Iceland) and fell in love with Iceland on my first visit there! Like you I felt a vague familiarity with the landscape and, like you, realized how much that had to do with my reading and re-reading of Tolkien over the years and his description of areas of Middle Earth.
    Thank you for the book!
    Best Always,

  2. Congrats! If I can get back from a business trip on time, I'm hoping to stop by and say hello when you're in Fairfax...