Award-winning travel writer Nicholas Jubber journeys across Europe exploring Europe's epic poems, from the Odyssey to Beowulf, the Song of Roland to the Nibelungenlied, and their impact on European identity in these turbulent times.
'A thought-provoking treatise interwoven with blistered-feet-on-the-ground accounts of spots both pretty and gritty' National Geographic
'Compelling, thought-provoking, and courageous, this epic-poetic journey peels back layers of collective emotional and imaginative inheritance. Jubber gets under the skin of our complicated continent and his timing is dead right' Kapka Kassabova
'A genuine epic' Wanderlust
'The prose is colourful and vigorous... Jubber's journeying has indeed been epic, in scale and ambition. In this thoughtful travelogue he has woven together colourful ancient and modern threads into a European tapestry that combines the sombre and the sparkling' Spectator
'EPIC CONTINENT sets out on a physical and mythological journey to uncover what it means to be European' Geographical
These are the stories that made Europe.
Reaching back into the ancient and medieval eras in which these defining works were produced, and investigating their continuing influence today, Epic Continent explores how matters of honour, fundamentalism, fate, nationhood, sex, class and politics have preoccupied the people of Europe across the millennia. In these tales soaked in blood and fire, Nicholas Jubber discovers how the world of gods and emperors, dragons and water maidens, knights and princesses made our own: their deep impact on European identity, and their resonance in our turbulent times.
Journeying from Turkey to Iceland, award-winning travel writer Nicholas Jubber takes us on a fascinating adventure through our continent's most enduring epic poems to learn how they were shaped by their times, and how they have since shaped us.
In the great literary tradition of writers like Jan Morris and Patrick Leigh Fermour, Jubber has a deep knowledge of the epics whose narratives and journeys he follows - The New European
An original and thoroughly absorbing book by a travel writer of immense ability - The New European
Epic continent is an Odyssey on its own, which travels both in space and time . . . Nick Jubber gets to the old heart of a still-troubled continent - Professor Tom Shippey
Brings out the many ironies of literary and political history ... and show[s] that the past is still with us all - TLS
A timely study of how epic can sadly harden frontiers and justify violence, while retaining the more hopeful possibility of re-invention to prompt dialogue and shape new communities of song - author of The Idea of the North
Epic Continent sets out on a physical and mythological journey to uncover what it means to be European - Geographical