Congratulations to Sherilyn Hellberg for winning the American Scandinavian Foundation’s Leif and Inger Sjöberg Award for her translation of Danish author Caspar Eric’s work.
Trolls: An Unnatural History (Chicago, 2014) is John Lindow’s new book. To explain why trolls still hold our interest, John Lindow goes back to their first appearances in Scandinavian folklore, where they were beings in nature living beside a preindustrial society of small-scale farming and fishing. He explores reports of actual encounters with trolls—meetings others found plausible in spite of their better judgment—and follows trolls’ natural transition from folktales to other domains in popular culture. Trolls, Lindow argues, would not continue to appeal to our imaginations today if they had not made the jump to illustrations in Nordic books and Scandinavian literature and drama.