Qty:1
  • List Price: $27.95
  • Save: $9.32 (33%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 20 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
The Vikings has been added to your Cart
Condition: :
Comment: 100% guaranteed delivery with Fulfillment By Amazon. Pages of this book are crisp and clean. This book shows minor shelf wear associated with limited use. Purchase of this item will benefit the Friends of the Houston Public Library.
Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
Sell yours for a Gift Card
We'll buy it for $2.40
Learn More
Trade in now
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Vikings Hardcover – October 16, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-1605984834 ISBN-10: 1605984833 Edition: 1st

Buy New
Price: $18.63
28 New from $9.31 19 Used from $9.50
Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover, October 16, 2013
"Please retry"
$18.63
$9.31 $9.50
Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


Featured Book: The Death of Caesar
Author Barry Strauss sheds new light on this fascinating, pivotal moment in world history. Learn more
$18.63 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 20 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

The Vikings + Viking: The Norse Warrior's [Unofficial] Manual
Price for both: $34.11

Buy the selected items together
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Featured Ancient History Books
Learn more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Pegasus; 1 edition (October 16, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1605984833
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605984834
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 0.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #637,098 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Inextricably tied up with the history of others—Romans, Britons, Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Picts, Gauls, and Gaels—the Vikings have long been portrayed through their contemporaries&' eyes. Not the scholarly type, the Vikings left only scant runes as their written record. Scottish archaeologist and historian Oliver takes clues from their contemporaries, burial remnants, and other cultural activities to tell their story. Instead of assuming the perspectives of the terrified writer of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, or Alcuin, or the Venerable Bede, or Tacitus, he takes the opposite point of view. And though one might question the objectivity of an author so clearly enamored with his subject, the result is a fascinating tale of explorers, chieftains, warlords, and a resourceful, stalwart people of immense seafaring prowess. Beginning before the sacking of Lindisfarne in C.E. 793, Oliver details their exploits from Kiev to Newfoundland, and the startling way they may have affected the Battle of Hastings in 1066—thereby changing the course of history—all of which makes for riveting reading. Though the book&'s organization is somewhat choppy, anyone interested in finding out more about these real-life raiders will enjoy everything Oliver reveals. Agents: Eugenie Furness, Furniss-Lawton (UK); Sophie Laurimore, Factual Management (UK). (Oct)

Review

“Looks beyond the clichéd impressions of hairy raiders to exhaustively explore their less well-documented maritime and agricultural innovations.” (Lonely Planet Traveler)

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Steven Spenser (real name) on February 16, 2014
This is not a straightforward history of the Vikings, who don't really appear until p.116 in Chapter 5. Before that the author explains why he became fascinated by Vikings as a child, and lays the foundation for their eventual appearance on the European scene with plodding chapters on the Bronze Age, the fall of the Roman Empire in the west, and other social, economic and political developments that led to the Viking Age.

After this lengthy set-up, the book starts to get going with descriptions in Chapter 5 of how Swedish Vikings established trading centers and kingdoms at the east end of the Baltic, eventually founding Russia. Chapter 6 gives a sketchy account of Viking interactions with the Byzantine empire, then--confusingly--shifts its focus to Viking incursions into Western Europe. At this point the author's primary interest in the Viking history of the British Isles becomes evident. We learn little here about Viking explorations into the Mediterranean, but quite a lot about the important role Vikings played in the early history of Ireland.

Oliver repeatedly refers to the Vikings' hunger for silver coins from the Mideast, and their southward trade dealings beyond the Black Sea. Historians think Vikings may have reached beyond Constantinople all the way to Baghdad, but you wouldn't know it from Oliver's book. Frustratingly, he throws out a choice tidbit--"Finds of silk back home in Sweden suggest they had penetrated China and the Indian subcontinent by then as well"--but, incredibly, doesn't follow up on it at all. Vikings in India? In China? THAT's something I'd never heard of, but Oliver can't be bothered with providing any more detail.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By C. P. Anderson on January 8, 2014
I'm guessing this might be the kind of history book for people who don't like history. Instead of analysis, theories, and even just plain facts and narrative, what you get instead is lots of purple prose, lots of details about places the author visits, lots of very high-level flights of fancy, lots of repeated information, lots of stuff that's not even related to the topic.

Just to give you an idea, here's how one chapter begins:

"The little Swedish island of Faro lies just off the northern tip of Gotland, like a raft that has slipped its mooring. Even mainland Swedes tend to misinterpret the name 'Faro' - hearing in it their word 'far,' meaning 'sheep.' Since 'o' means island, they tend to assume the place is called the 'island of the sheep' - and given the number of sheep there, it is an easy mistake to make. On Faro, however, there is a distinct dialect of the Swedish tongue, called Modern Gutnish, which has been spoken in some of the islands since at least the medieval period. Modern Gutnish is derived, as might be expected, from Old Gutnish, another branch of the Old Norse language. For Gutnish speakers on Faro (and they are few and far between now, among a total population of fewer than 600 souls) the word for sheep is 'lamm.' On Faro 'far' has connotations of distance travelled, the journey, and so the name is better understood as either 'the travelers' island' or, even more precisely. 'the island that must be travelled to.' Since it lies marooned off the coast of an island off the coast of Sweden, it seems like a suitable name.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Richard Jones on March 3, 2014
Wanders a little, but gives a great summary of events and extent of Viking incursions. Would have liked to have seen maps within the Chapters to help locate where the author is referring to as well as indications of likely direction of travel and stops along the way. Many, many places in Russia, England, Scotland and Ireland are referenced, but unless you have an Atlas you are sunk in terms of positioning yourself geographically. Also, there are so many different lineages of Vikings, Norwegian, Swedish and Finnish that it would have been useful to give a genealogy of some sort. The same is true of the kings from the 'host' lands that fought off the Vikings. Lastly, a summary chronology would have been extremely useful.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Theophanu on December 29, 2013
Verified Purchase
This is a fun read, with lots of anecdotes about the author's experience on the open Atlantic in a viking ship, eating strange Icelandic foods, etc. But this book is anything but exhaustive, and all but the most recent archaeological information can be found elsewhere. Definitely not the place to go if you want detailed Viking information, but it's okay as a starting-point on the subject.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By MAYA'S BOOKS on January 20, 2015
I will say I read this book because of the TV show on the History channel Vikings. I did not feel I got a history lesson on the vikings culture , which is what I was looking for. It was a wordy author's account of his travels
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By HP Seaton on November 5, 2013
Mr. Oliver has written a strongly flavored history of Vikings. The book is grounded in scholarship and research but it's the author's connection of his modern travels and descriptions with those long gone times that really makes it shine. His passion for the subject comes through on every page and really enhances the book.

I would have loved more on the collision of the Norse religion and Christianity, but he did a great job of keeping it lean, while still informative. Maybe down the road he could be persuaded to do a book just on that subject. Fingers crossed.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
The Vikings
This item: The Vikings
Price: $27.95 $18.63
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com