Author(s): Frans G. Bengtsson
This saga brings alive the world of the 10th century AD when the Vikings raided the coasts of England. Acclaimed as one of the best historical novels ever written, this engaging saga of Viking adventure in 10th century northern Europe has a very appealing young hero, Orm Tostesson, whose story we follow from inexperienced youth to adventurous old age, through slavery and adventure to a royal marriage and the search for great treasure. Viking expeditions take him to lands as far apart as England, Moorish Spain, Gaardarike (the country that was to become Russia), and the long road to Miklagard. The salt-sea spray, the swaying deck awash in slippery blood are the backdrop to fascinating stories of King Harald Blue Tooth, the Jomsvikings, attempts to convert the Northmen to Christianity, and much else. Like H. Rider Haggard, Bengtsson is a master of the epic form.
'A masterpiece' New York Times 'The author and his excellent translator bring that old, warrior world alive with such vigorous enjoyment and simplicity that the deeds of those men roving about the world in their dragon ships seem as marvellous as those of our atomic age' Daily Telegraph 'A boldly illuminated picture of the Northmen... confidently recommended' The Times 'A banquet of adventure by sea and land, with man-size helpings of battle and murder, robbery and rape' New Statesman
Frans G. Bengtsson, Swedish essayist, novelist, poet, and biographer, was born in Tossjo, near Kristianstad, as the son of the manager of an estate in Skane. Bengtsson was the first successful practitioner of the informal essay in Sweden, a genre that he virtually introduced to the literature of his own country. His best-known novel is Rode orm (1941-45, The Long Ships), a Viking saga written in an ornate and romantic style.