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Grendel

Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Grendel
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Item Details

Authors: Gardner, John, 1933-1982
Statement of Responsibility: John Gardner
Title: Grendel
Publisher: New York : Vintage Books, 1985, c1971
Characteristics: 174 p. ; 21 cm.
Local Note: Published also by Vintage, 1989
LCCN: 85040133
Branch Call Number: FIC G
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Oct 24, 2014
  • eferry rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

While the description on our site calls Grendel merely a re-telling of the story "Beowulf," it's a lot more.

Grendel focuses on the titular character, the monster Grendel, as he lives, plots, and imagines in his life in Denmark in the early years AD. Most of the story is written using modern terms (sometimes in a hilariously anachronistic way) and is much more accessible than the original epic.

It's a short read, but (as any high-schooler might tell you) there are innumerable ways to interpret Grendel and his way of thinking.

Try it out!

Nov 09, 2011
  • MeeisLee rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

"Grendel is a beautiful and heartbreaking modern retelling of the Beowulf epic from the point of view of the monster, Grendel, the villain of the 8th-century Anglo-Saxon epic." -Amazon.com

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I found Grendel to be an interesting take on the Beowulf epic. I actually read Grendel before reading Beowulf, and it changed how I viewed the original epic. Grendel, a monster, reflects some of the confusion and questioning present in humans. The setting is in 4th century AD in Denmark but his language is obviously modern. I don't think it takes away from the story as I found the old English in Beowulf overbearing and confusing.

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