The Edda is a collection of Norse myths, written in the 13th century by a dude named Snorri. It's where we got most of our knowledge of Norse mythology today, and it's wicked awesome. I learned, for instance, that your legs may hump each other and produce a child while you're asleep, which is something I'm going to be more careful about from now on. And that mead started as god spit, then turned into blood, and ended up being farted out of Odin's ass, which is, by a train of logic that actually kinda makes sense when you read it, why it's called the drink of poets. These are important things to know.
I also learned that much of what I learned from reading Thor comics when I was 13 isn't totally accurate. There's no mention at all of him being in the Avengers.
I enjoyed learning about the Norse poetic style of "kenning," where the point is to pile image upon image to make a complicated chain of meaning. For instance, "spurner of the bonfires of the sea," where "bonfires of the sea" refers to the sun's reflection off it, which is golden, and a spurner of gold would be: a generous man. That's cool because it's exactly what rappers do! Here's an example from the mighty Dres of Black Sheep:
I try to stay aware of the drama, it’s crazy
Plus, see I got to tell your mama that I’m Swayze
Here, Swayze refers to the late actor's classic movie Ghost,
and ghost means he's gone; so Dres is saying that he's leaving your mama. Which must be sad for her.
I'm not saying that rappers were influenced by Vikings. That would be an awesome thing to say, but not a reasonable one. I'm just saying there's sortof a kinship there.
It's not every day that you get to learn about the spiritual connection between hip-hop and Vikings. This is a cool book, man.