Alan Lee, illustrator of such classics as The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, talks to Five Books about his favourite stories drawn from myth and fairy tale, what they mean to him, and how important it is for young readers today to experience these ancient stories.
The Vikings discovered America and traded slaves in Baghdad. They sometimes buried their dead in ships, but probably did not burn them. And they did not wear horned helmets. Historian Eleanor Barraclough separates myth from reality and recommends the best Viking books.
Lucy Coats, author of one of the best books Greek myth books for children, recommends her own favourites. There’s one for children, one for teenagers, one for scholars, one to read out loud and one that’s very definitely adult in content…
Rory McTurk, Emeritus Professor of Icelandic Studies at the University of Leeds, introduces us to the landscape of old Icelandic culture, addressing the Icelandic sagas, medieval Nordic history, and links to Anglo-Saxon England.