The Long Ships – Frans G. Bengtsson

thelongships1It is time to engage in a little bit of blog resurrection. My reading has been somewhat haphazard in the last few months, so choosing a book to review is not an easy task. The Long Ships by Frans Bengtsson is a novel I finished more than half a year ago; maybe I could have written a proper, detailed review in the beginning of 2013, but that’s not the case now. I feel, though, that I must write something about it. For this is the sort of novel you discover unexpectedly, like a hidden treasure buried in the piles of rubble you were distractedly raking through. Such gems must not remained unmentioned. The distance of time may not permit me analytical sharpness, but effusive enthusiasm I still have aplenty, so I will focus on that and try to tone down the effusive bit as much as possible.

In the introduction to the book Michael Chabon calls it a work of fiction that “stands ready, given the chance, to bring lasting pleasure to every single human being on the face of the earth.” What a way to negatively bias the readers. And yet, if Chabon’s impossible breed of a book ever existed, The Long Ships has its genes. Continue reading