Note: The following list is only composed of the books I’ve read. There are way more extensive lists out there, but this one is composed of books which I have personally read and found useful. I can’t promise that everyone will find these books useful.
I will be adding more books and articles as I read them.
Recommended Reading List for Vanatru
The Prose Edda
The Poetic Edda
There are various translations in print today. I have the translation of the Prose Edda by Brodeur and the translation of the Poetic Edda by Caroline Larrington, but I’d encourage you to shop around and find one you like.
Academic Books of Interest
Iron Age Myth and Materiality by Lotte Hedeager. A fascinating look at the relationship between myth and material culture, mostly focusing on Odin and elite warriors.
Heathen Specific Resources
Elves, Wights, and Trolls: Towards the Practice of Germanic Heathenry, Vol. 1 by Kvedulf Gundarsson (Note: This is an EXCELLENT text for anyone interested in elves, trolls, and other beings in Norse cosmology. It’s also scholarly without being dry.)
Rites of Pleasure: Sexuality in Wicca and Neopaganism by Jennifer Hunter (a great resource for those who are interested in Pagan perspectives on sexuality)
Queer Magic: Power Beyond Boundaries edited by Lee Harrington and Tai Fenix Kulystin (I haven’t finished reading this book yet, but it’s already a must read, not only for queer Pagans/polytheists/witches but allies looking to make our spaces more affirming.)
Vanatru Specific Resources
Visions of Vanaheim by Svartesol et al. The second edition is out, but I very much prefer the first edition, as based on reviews of the second it focuses on the unnamed Vanir and Nornoriel Lokason’s personal practice over the Big Gods and Vanatru 101 focus. If you can find the first edition, I highly recommend picking it up.
Freyja, Lady, Vanadis: An Introduction to the Goddess by Patricia M. Lafayllve. Please note: the author has a history of being subtly anti-Loki.
Fire Jewel: A Devotional for Freyja by yours truly under the pseudonym Gefion Vanirdottir. A collection of articles, rituals, and poems dedicated to all things Freyja, strictly devotional in nature, so not a resource if you’re interested in actual scholarship (Lafayllve’s intro is much better for that).
Seidr: The Gate is Open by Katie Gerrard. I liked this book but it’s important to keep in mind that this is the author’s personal experience with seidr. For a more general book on trance, Trance-Portation is much better.
Trance-Portation: Learning to Navigate the Inner World by Diana Paxson This is a more generalized look at trance and attaining altered states of consciousness, but it is an EXCELLENT introduction.
Embracing the Moon: A Witch’s Guide to Ritual Spellcraft and Shadow Work by Yasmine Galenorn Some may find this book to be too Wiccanesque, but it was basically my Witchcraft 101 book.
The Green Witch by Arin Murphy-Hiscock An inoffensive 101 guide to green witchery, does get a bit Wiccanesque, specifically when she starts talking about deities, but if you’re looking for a place to start, this is a lovely book.
The Witch’s Book of Self-Care by Arin Murphy-Hiscock A book that I definitely needed to read about taking care of yourself and supporting yourself with magic. My one big criticism is whoever decided dark blue headings with pink text was readable needs to be given a talking to because it’s not.
The Way of the Hedge Witch: Rituals and Spells for Hearth and Home by Arin Murphy-Hiscock. A good resource for home-based spirituality, particularly focused on the kitchen.
Under the Witching Tree: A Folk Grimoire of Tree Lore and Practicum by Corinne Boyer. One of the better books of tree lore that I’ve come across. It still has some eyebrow-raising moments and some of the superstitions and practices it describes are completely bonkers but it’s still solid.
The Witch’s Mirror: The Craft, Lore, & Magick of the Looking Glass by Mickie Mueller – a short book about how to choose and use mirrors in magic.
Fiction of Interest
The Chalion series by Lois McMaster Bujold
Curse of Chalion
Paladin of Souls
The Hallowed Hunt
MUST READS for any god-touched folks.
The Temple of the Twelve series by Esmerelda Little Flame
Novice of Colors
Novice of Colors: Experiential Journal
Flight of Colors
These books are a bit New Agey, the writing isn’t the best, and they’re very heteronormative but the books combine spiritual course of study with fiction. The Experiential Journal is harder to find but is focused on a more practical application of material in the books.
Miscellaneous Pagan Topics
The Earth Path: Grounding Your Spirit in the Rhythms of Nature by Starhawk (Note: Starhawk can be kind of preachy at times, but the Earth Path might be of interest if you’re looking for ways to better connect to your local environment.)
Field Guide to the Little People by Nancy Arrowsmith (an AMAZING RESOURCE for anyone interested in fairy lore—includes a lot of Northern entities: koboldes, the fylgia, etc.)
New Paths to Animal Totems: Three Alternative Approaches to Creating Your Own Totemism by Lupa (Animal totems from a neopagan perspective that is beginner-friendly without being culturally appropriative.)