Happy Friday friends! For todays book review, I am going to be discussing my latest read; Beowulf. I am sure many of you have heard of this book; the author has yet to be discovered/recognized, the middle English writing style, and overall dread that you hear High Schoolers in English class discussing. Personally I was very excited, with the highest of hopes that this would be yet another book I really enjoyed. My opinion on Beowulf is this; it is a difficult read. The book’s verbiage and language is difficult to get past, however, if you can eventually get past that, the story and plot I found to be fascinating. The book (although it is not divided this way) has three parts. Beowulf, the most powerful and strong person in the world at that time has to fight three different villains of all shapes and sizes. Reading this poem (it is an epic poem, similarly to last weeks the Iliad) I got a slight sense I was in a fairy tale whilst reading, and my imagination was going crazy trying to picture the monsters and places Beowulf had to travel to.
I think this poem is worth the read. After reading it I was content that I had it under my belt and I think the references throughout the novel (such as Cain and Abel) are vital in explaining the importance of the text. To give you readers some perspective, I ended up reading the book twice, from two different editions, one after the other just to make sure I understood what I was reading. If you are looking for a more factual-based edition with a close rendition of the original text, pick up Donaldson’s translation through Norton publishing. I preferred to read the Seamus Henley version (that being the one I had purchased myself, not for school), and found it much easier and providing much clarity to what I had read. If you have already read Beowulf, what were your thoughts? I’d love to know if I wasn’t the only one having a hard time time with it. If you have not read it yet, try it out! While my rating for this book will probably be one of my lowest that I have done on here, that doesn’t mean I regret reading it, or think it is a bad book. I think it is a book that I will read many times in my life, and only appreciate more as I grow up with it. Happy reading friends!
Quote of the Day: “And such was his affection that he could not help being overcome: his fondness for the man was so deep-founded, it warmed his heart and wound the heartstrings tight in his heart” – Beowulf.
Five Star Rating: ★★