The Troll with No Heart in His Body and Other Tales of Trolls from Norway

The Troll With No Heart In His Body

The Troll With No Heart In His Body and Other Tales of Trolls, from Norway consists of tales retold by "The Troll Lady," Lise Lunge-Larsen, with striking woodcut and colored ink illustrations by Betsy Bowen. Lunge-Larsen is a storyteller who emigrated to Minnesota from Norway, bringing with her mythic Norse stories of giant trolls with tiny brains. In her introduction, she says, "Nothing can truly show children, even adults, more about how to live, about who they are, and about their place in the world, and the struggles of life than a good folktale, and these troll stories I count among the best."

One of my favorites is "The White Cat in the Dovre Mountain," in which a pack of ferocious, greedy trolls are led to believe that a huge white bear is a harmless cat - with poor results for the trolls, of course. (Although in this story, the trolls don't explode into a thousand little rocks, which is the end they come to in several of the stories!) The author includes a source note with each story, in addition to a bibliography. This book is visually appealing and the stories, both dramatic and humorous, are well-written. Recommended for grades 2-5.
(Posted by Ellen.)