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Iceland: Land of the Sagas Paperback – Oct 6 1998


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Iceland: Land of the Sagas + Lonely Planet Iceland 8th Ed.: 8th Edition + Rough Guide Iceland 5e
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Villard; Reprint edition (Oct. 6 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375752676
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375752674
  • Product Dimensions: 29.2 x 21.6 x 1.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 726 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #5,332 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you read and appreciated the Icelandic Sagas, this should be a great book for you!

The pictures are very impressing, the text is solid and the impression is great.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found the content interesting and relevant for those planing to visit Iceland. Unfortunately the quality of the photographic reproductions and binding were very poor. The outside cover seperated from the inside pages within a week of having purchased the book.
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This book is a nice and poetic way to go through the history and cultural background of Iceland. It's not a travel guide and practical informations date back a little bit. It's a good way to get a glimpse of the past and understand what place the sagas take in the history, culture and geography of the country
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Black Griffin on May 9 2004
Format: Paperback
I am glad I got this book just for the text, which is excellent. But I'm surprised at rave reviews for the photos, which to me are absurd. They hardly explore Iceland's unique topography and instead turn it into a generic rugged Anywhere. Notice that in almost every photo there's some sign of habitation: a building, an animal,a person in a boat, etc. The thing that distinguishes Iceland is that there's NO ONE there. You can drive for hours, as I have along the coast on a road that's simply a leveling of the gravel, without seeing another car, building or even a road sign. It's creepy and exhilerating. It's the ideal place to be alone. The landscape is so unusual it reminds you of nothing familiar, nothing from your past. And except for rocky outcroppings, it's flat in a way that makes you feel you could be on the moon. I love Iceland, am obsessed with it, and go there as often as possible. For me it is a source of existential peace. For a true picture of the landscape, listen to the music of Sigur Ros, and investigate the photographs of artist Olafur Eliasson. Or go and take your own pictures. They'll be better than these.
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Format: Paperback
Another coffee table paperweight? Not by a long shot! I am planning a trip to Iceland and have been reading fairly intensively in the subject. When I began reading this book, I did not expect to learn much. What a pleasant surprise! I spent a whole Sunday poring through it and was surprised at how excellent the text is -- and how well Jon Kracauer's superb photographs supplements it.
David Roberts digs deep into the sagas, quoting from such relatively abstruse sources as GIMLI'S SAGA, GRETTIR'S SAGA, and BARD'S SAGA. The helpful bibliography lists a number of works I never knew existed, including a book by Sir Richard Francis Burton, the African explorer, about a summer he spent in Iceland as well as a number of rare travel books written by Europeans going back as far as the 18th century. One thing unique about this book is that Roberts and Kracauer visit many out-of-the-way places mentioned in the sagas, such as the almost inaccessible Isle of Drangey, where Grettir the Strong met his death.
If you hope to visit Iceland, get this book first. It will give you not only an excellent background in the sagas but an awe for this isolated land that is so close and yet so far.
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Format: Paperback
I ordered this book before coming to Iceland-- When I received the book I first was amazed by the Photography, it was outstanding. I couldn't wait until I was in Iceland so that I visit some of the places I saw in the book. (It looks even better in person-- no trick photography here) I also read about the sagas-- Sagas in Iceland are a very big part of the culture--No ifs ands or buts. They love telling stories about the sagas and thanks to this book I have been able to carry on some interesting conversations with the local Icelandic folks. Most sagas are rich with excitment. If you are looking for a book with great photos mixed with Icelandic culture-- Here's your book!
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