Mythological Mondays: Trolls!

Mythological Mondays is a feature I created to spotlight books brimming with--you guessed it--mythology! I adore this sub-genre and can't wait to share my love with all of my fellow bookworms! This feature isn't just focused on novel reviews; it may also include interviews, looks at original mythological tales, etc. Please feel free to do this with me! If you guys ever do a mythological feature and want to join this and snag my lovely mermaid, I would LOVE to see the feature. Leave a comment for us all to see! It doesn’t have to be Greek mythology, or even mythology per say. It can be mermaids, unicorns, or heck, even fairy tales (because I’m too lazy to do a separate fairy tale feature…). It doesn’t even have to be every Monday. I’m sure there will be Mondays when I skip,, uh, recently?^^;;;

Happy Troll Day!

In honor of the Illustration Reveal of some troll art from the upcoming THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM today at A Backwards Story, I've decided to center today's Mythological Mondays post guessed it...trolls!!

What do you think of when you think about trolls?

Do you think of the cute (or, depending on your state of mind, creepy) troll dolls that were once a big fad?

Do you think of an old,  ugly creature that lives under a bridge, may or may not have a club, and may or may not eat people?

Okay, tell the truth:  The first thing that came to mind was the term used for those idiots who troll the web and post stupid comments in forums just to incite a flame war.  Ahhh, but where do you think that term COMES from!?

My first exposure to trolls was probably the classic children's story THREE BILLY GOATS GRUFF, where the troll was an evil creature under a bridge.

My next big memory is from Gail Carson Levine's ELLA ENCHANTED.  Those trolls were slicker, but still evil.  Their voices were like honey and if a person didn't stuff wax in his/her ears, s/he could be enticed to death.

I had never seen a positive take on trolls or their abilities until I read Amanda Hocking's best-selling Trylle Trilogy (which I reviewed today!).  I also never realized that changelings could be troll babies until SWITCHED, having only associated the term with the fae.  After a little online research, however, I was intrigued to see that the term does, in fact, also apply to trolls!

When Walden Pond Press asked me if I would reveal illustrations of trolls for the Illustration Reveal Tour of THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM and asked whether I liked trolls or not, I honestly had no opinion one way or the other.  I hadn't read the Trylle Trilogy at the time, and only had the "trolls are evil, disgusting creatures" mentality to go by.  But sure, why not?

Of course, being the curious fantasy lover I am, I wanted to know more about trolls and set out to see what I could find out about their origins.  It seems that trolls have Norse and Scandinavian roots.  They're often secluded creatures that live away from humans, though they often remain in groups with other trolls.

Trolls are often portrayed as ugly, stupid creatures that lumber and are easy to take by surprise,  though they're so strong that they can put up a tough fight.

What do you think of when you think about trolls?  If you've read SWITCHED, has it changed your perspective at all?  Do you still see all trolls as dim-witted and/or persuasive beings, or are they something more?

Want more trolls?  Check out today's review of Amanda Hocking's Trylle Trilogy and take part in the tour stop for THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM with an exclusive story excerpt and two illustration reveals!